All you need to know about Electronic Insurance Accounts
You will be swimming in paper if you don't get organized. There is a simple way to pull you out of this mess. Use the EIA (Electronic Insurance Account).
Once you start down the path to insuring, one thing that you'll notice is that the paperwork piles up fast. You buy another set of insurance policies, and you get another set of papers that you need to safeguard. The bottom line is: You will be swimming in paper if you don't get organized. There is a simple way to pull you out of this mess. Use the EIA (Electronic Insurance Account).
This will even help those who are often unaware of any life insurance policies been taken by the family. In fact, this is the key reason why unclaimed money with life insurance companies grew over 250% in the four-year period between 2009-10 and 2012-13. At the end of 2012-13, unclaimed money with life insurance companies was Rs 4,866 crore compared to Rs 1,373 crore in 2009-10. An EIA would help you avoid this.
Here are some things to know about Electronic Insurance Accounts:
What is EIA?
Don't get misled by the complicated name. The Electronic Insurance Account or e-Insurance Account is like a bank account. Instead of storing your money, the EIA helps you store your insurance documents online in electronic format. It can also come handy while buying insurance over the internet and manage it online. Thus, you can have all your electronic policies in one place. Your entire portfolio is accessible with just a click of the button.
How does EIA work?
Much like the bank or demat account, you have a service provider who opens an 'insurance repository'. This acts as the central holding place for all your insurance copies. Consider the insurance repository to be your bank. Just like the bank has lakhs and crores of money through deposits from customers, so will the repository hold your insurance policies in electronic format.
You have to approach an insurance repository to open your Electronic Insurance Account. Once you do that, you will be given a unique account number – much like your savings bank account details. This number will represent your identity and your insurance holdings.
What are the benefits of EIA?
· Since all your policies are in one place, you are now better equipped to know your investments.
· You can also make better decisions for tax implications since you have all the data.
· You will be relieved from the tedious job of going through the physical policy papers.
· You can now manage all your life insurance policies of all insurers under a single e-Insurance Account.
· To add to this, opening an EIA is free of cost. Once EIA is opened and you submit your documents, you do not have to worry about document submission henceforth. The EIA has your data; and this will be used every time you purchase a new policy.
· EIA makes your life simpler when you need to change your personal details in the policy, like your address. Just open your account and make the changes in your personal details column; the information gets percolated to all your policies automatically. So, you no longer need to run to the insurance policy office to update your information or to pay your premiums. Everything is at just a click of the button.
Where can you open EIA?
The insurance market regulator – Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) allows the following five entities to act as 'Insurance repositories', which are authorized to open e-Insurance Accounts.
- NSDL Database Management Limited
- Central Insurance Repository Limited
- SHCIL Projects Limited
- Karvy Insurance Repository Limited
- CAMS Repository Services Limited
These authorities are allowed to maintain a data of insurance policies in electronic form on behalf of the insurers.
How to open EIA?
It's as simple as opening a bank account online. It is just a three-step process. You need to download the EIA opening form from the preferred insurance repository and fill it up with your details. You need a copy of your date of birth, PAN or UID card, address proof and a cancelled cheque. Self-attest these documents with your signature and scan the same onto your computer. If you do not have a scanner, you can go to the nearest cyber-café to get the documents scanned. You will then get these documents as an image or pdf file. Just upload these documents along with the form at the insurance repository's website. There you go; you are ready to manage and claim your insurance money in a fast and easy way.
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