The future is uncertain - no one knows what will happen tomorrow or in the coming year. While we all hope that we’d be fortunate enough to live happy, wonderful lives, challenges are inevitable.
Hence, having a plan for emergencies or unfortunate circumstances is vital. One simple yet effective way to protect you and your family from financial strain is to have life and/or critical illness insurance.
However, Bank Negara Malaysia reports that only 41% of Malaysians are currently covered by a life insurance policy or a family takaful certificate. Of the 41%, more than 90% are not covered sufficiently.
Additionally, it’s been discovered that only 4% of B40 households have takaful or life insurance coverage. This means that 96% of the B40 income group are either unable to afford or are uninformed about the importance of insurance coverage.
To meet this gap, Malaysia's Employee's Provident Fund (EPF) has launched the i-Lindung initiative. But before we explain what i-Lindung is all about, here are some reasons why life and critical illness insurance are essential.
What is life insurance?
Life insurance provides a payout to the insured's beneficiary in exchange for premiums paid (usually monthly) if the insured passes away. The sum of money depends on the policy and premium amount.
Why is life insurance important?
Life insurance is important in that it’s guaranteed financial protection for your family if you pass away. It can replace the loss of income, pay the mortgage, education or tuition fees, healthcare, childcare, household debts, daily expenses and even funeral expenses.
What is critical illness insurance?
A critical illness policy provides a lump sum payout if you're diagnosed with a life-threatening condition, such as cancer or heart disease.
Why is critical illness insurance important?
The money from critical illness insurance enables those who are ill to focus on getting well as it can:
Pay for treatment.
Pay daily expenses, so you don’t have to worry about working to cover your bills.
Pay for transportation to treatment centres.
Pay for a vacation if you need a restful place to recover.
What is EPF i-Lindung?
i-Lindung is an initiative launched by EPF on 12 July 2022. It aims to provide EPF members access to affordable life and/or critical illness policies as insurance is an important key to financial planning.
Under this initiative, members can use funds from Account 2 to buy insurance policies from EPF-approved Insurance & Takaful Operators (ITOs). Some key i-Lindung features include:
A medical check-up is not required; as such, it's a great opportunity for those with prior conditions to obtain insurance.
Access to product information so members can make informed decisions about the products before purchasing.
Online quotation for all products.
Flexibility to purchase i-Lindung products anytime and anywhere as the self-service platform is available 24 hours.
Access to policy details once purchase is made.
What does EPF i-Lindung cover?
EPF i-Lindung products currently cover a one-year term for death, total disability and critical illness. However, these products can only be purchased by members for themselves, and thus, you cannot cover your spouse, children or other dependents with i-Lindung products.
Who can apply for EPF i-Lindung?
All Malaysians who are EPF members (i-Akaun users) can apply for EPF i-Lindung. However, you do need to have a sufficient balance in EPF Account 2 to pay for the premiums.
How to apply for EPF i-Lindung?
Applying for EPF i-Lindung is quite straightforward. To purchase i-Lindung products,
First, log into your i-Akaun.
Then, select the i-Lindung tab.
Once the tab is open, choose one or more of the products offered by the ITOs.
You will then be led to complete and submit details at the ITO’s portal.
Next, you will have to authorize the deduction of the product premium from your EPF account. Payment status can be monitored in the ‘Transaction History’ section.
Once you've completed these steps, you'll receive an acknowledgement slip from the ITO from which you purchased the i-Lindung product.
Prudential i-Lindung plans
Prudential Malaysia has been appointed as one of the insurance and takaful operators (ITO) under the i-Lindung initiative. Thus, EPF members can benefit from the following plan(s) by Prudential:
PRUBSN Lindung (Term Protection)
PRUBSN Cegah (Critical Illness Protection)
PRUGuard Life and PRUBSN Lindung are life insurance plans designed to protect your loved ones if you experience death or suffer from total permanent disability. Depending on your needs and budget, you can ensure your family’s financial future from as little as RM10.40 per year.
Meanwhile, PRUCare Life and PRUBSN Cegah are critical illness insurance that provides up to RM100,000 lump sum benefit that you can use to pay for treatments or replace your income while recovering from a critical illness. These covers help lessen financial strain and worry and thus, enable to focus on getting well.
Besides this, there is also the MyRezeki Campaign which will run until 30 September 2022. Launched in conjunction with the i-Lindung initiative, EPF members who purchase Prudential’s i-Lindung coverage are in for the running to win over RM100,000 worth of prizes.
Finally, the Pulse by Prudential App makes tracking your insurance cover easy. You can view your insurance certificate, submit claims and keep track of claim status, all with just a few clicks.
Life insurance and EPF FAQ
Can I withdraw EPF for insurance?
Yes, you can now withdraw EPF Account 2 for insurance. However, you can only buy approved life and critical illness policies from approved ITOs under the i-Lindung initiative.
Am I eligible for i-Lindung if I’m over 55?
Yes, you can apply for i-Lindung if you’re over 55 as long as you’re:
An EPF member,
Within eligible entry age of ITO offered products, and
maintain at least RM100 in EPF Account 55 or ‘Akaun Emas’.
Do I need to undergo a medical exam to purchase i-Lindung products?
No, you will not need any medical assessment to purchase i-Lindung products. As such, it is a good opportunity for those with underlying health issues to obtain some form of insurance. However, you may be required to answer some simple questions the ITO requires.
Are i-Lindung products eligible for tax relief?
Yes, you will enjoy tax relief for premiums paid towards i-Lindung products. However, it’s important to note that the only payment method available is via deduction from EPF Account 2.
Thus, if you do not contribute to EPF but wish to purchase i-Lindung products, you can opt for a voluntary contribution to your EPF. You’ll enjoy tax relief and additional dividends from the amount that goes into Account 1.
How to claim for a policy purchased via i-Lindung?
You can refer to your policy or certificate, or contact the respective ITO to make a claim. You can also check the ‘My Protection Plan’ under i-Lindung for information on policy claims.
When does my i-Lindung policy coverage start?
Your i-Lindung policy coverage will start when the policy or certificate is issued. You will receive your documents via email from the ITO. Additionally, documents can be retrieved from the ‘My Protection Plan’ section on the i-Lindung webpage.
Does i-Lindung offer maturity benefits?
i-Lindung products are pure protection and thus, do not have any cash value or maturity benefits. This means that the ITO will cover the sum insured for the policy, but there will not be any payout once the policy period ends.
Can I cancel the policy I bought under i-Lindung?
Yes, you can cancel the policy anytime. You will receive a full refund of the premium paid if you cancel the policy within 15 days of policy commencement.
A life or critical illness policy can be incredibly helpful if the unfortunate happens to you. Although you may no longer be around, an insurance plan eases much of the financial burden and thus, allows your family to maintain their current standard of living.
If you don't have an insurance policy to cover you and your family yet, why not consider Prudential's coverage under i-Lindung? PruBSN Lindung is affordable, convenient, and with numerous benefits; there's nothing to lose.