Some of the features of your insurance in Equip are changing from 1 July 2016, many being improved and simplified. Here is a summary of the features that have been changed. The full details of insurance in Equip MyFuture can be found in the Insurance in your super – additional guide. The guides will be available on the website from 1 July 2016.
Increased flexibility (salary, fixed, units)
Equip offers flexible insurance options to meet your changing needs. You can change the type and amount of death and Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) cover you have at any time. In some cases, you may have to provide health evidence and fill in a detailed health statement. Generally speaking, if you want to decrease or cancel your cover, you can do this by filling in the relevant form.
You have complete flexibility for the following scenarios:
- Change to a multiple of salary basis (where salary based cover is available) or change the number of multiples of salary
- Change to a number of units of death and TPD cover or change the number of units
- Change to fixed death and TPD cover or change the amount of fixed cover
- Reduce or cancel your death and TPD cover
- Change to death only cover
Salary based death & TPD cover increases
If at present your death and TPD cover is based on a multiple of salary, the amount of your cover will automatically increase in line with your salary increases, up to $1.2m, as long as your employer notifies us of your salary increase. You may wish to speak to your employer about notifying us when your salary increases.
Your employer has until 30 September 2016 to notify us if you had an increase in salary prior to 1 July 2016. For salary increases after 1 July 2016, the increase will take effect from the next 1 January or 1 July after the increase applies and we are notified of the increase. If you are not at work on the date of the increase, the increased amount of your cover will be limited cover until you’ve been at work and actively performing your normal duties for 30 consecutive days.
If your salary decreases, the amount of your death & TPD cover will not automatically decrease.
Changes to what happens when you leave your employer
We have improved the product terms so that when you stop working for your employer, your insurance cover will continue on the same basis and amount and we will continue to deduct premiums from your account. Your cover will continue whilst there are sufficient funds to cover your insurance premiums. At the time there is a change in your employment status, you may wish to review the type and amount of cover you have to ensure it is appropriate for you.
Claim waiting period for TPD claims
The waiting period before you can claim for a TPD benefit has been reduced to three months. Before you make a claim for a TPD benefit, you need to have been a permanent employee working 15 or more hours each week within the 6 months prior to the date of your disablement. You will need to show that, due to illness or injury, you are unable to do any work as a result of the injury or illness for 3 consecutive months before you make your claim.
Injuries or illnesses for TPD immediate assessment
A new feature enables you to obtain a TPD benefit if you are diagnosed with a defined medical condition. If you are unable to perform your usual job as a result of suffering one or more of these defined medical conditions, the insurer will waive the usual 3 month waiting period and will start the assessment of your claim once it receives your completed documentation. Some examples of illnesses and injuries that can be assessed immediately are blindness, loss of hearing, loss of speech, quadriplegia, major head trauma, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson’s disease.
Change to part of the TPD definition from ADL to EWA
There are a number of ways you can satisfy the definition of total and permanent disablement and there has been a change to one of those ways. Instead of assessing your ability to perform Activities of Daily Living, the insurer will assess your ability to perform Everyday Working Activities (EWAs) to do with mobility, communication, vision, lifting, and manual dexterity, and you will need to have lost some capacity in these areas to the extent required to the satisfaction of the insurer.
Additional event for Life Events cover
You can increase your cover without underwriting when certain life events occur. There are now six life events –
A life event happens when:
- you get married;
- you get divorced;
- you purchase a residential home for your permanent residence with a mortgage of $100,000 or more;
- you or your partner gives birth;
- you or your partner adopts a child/children; or
- you take out a new business loan of over $100,000.
When a life event occurs, you can apply for the following:
- an additional one times your salary, if your cover is on a multiple of salary basis;
- the lesser of 25% of your current cover, $200,000 or the value of your loan (where applicable), if your cover is on a fixed cover basis,; or
- one additional unit, if your cover is on a unit cover basis.
Salary definition for SC benefits
If you are a permanent employee or contractor working at least 15 hours a week for an employer with a tailored arrangement with Equip, at the date you are totally and temporarily disabled, we will pay you a monthly benefit which is the lesser of your insured cover and 75% of your pre disability monthly income plus, if you have chosen a superannuation contribution benefit, we will pay an amount into your superannuation account.
Monthly income can be calculated a number of different ways depending on your circumstances.
If you are on leave from your employer, any death, TPD or SC cover you have with us will continue and premiums will be deducted. Your cover will continue whilst there are sufficient funds to cover your insurance premiums.
Any death, TPD or SC cover you have with us will continue if you are temporarily overseas for up to 3 years, provided that:
- you remain a member of Equip throughout the period;
- you have sufficient money in your account for premiums to be deducted; and
- a claim does not arise directly or indirectly from when you have been in a country listed as ‘do not travel’ on the Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade website (www.dfat.gov.au).
Death benefit while on Salary Continuance (SC) benefits
We have improved SC benefits in the event that if you die while you are receiving a SC benefit, the insurer will pay your dependants a lump sum equal to 3 months of your SC benefit.
Change to definition for partial disability (you have some capacity to earn an income) for SC benefits
The insurer will pay you a partial disability benefit if, directly before suffering a partial disability, you suffered total disability continuously for a period of at least 7 days out of 12 consecutive days.
Change to definition for an unsuccessful return to work
If you are suffering total disability and return to work during the 3 month waiting period and your return to work is not successful due to the Injury or Illness causing total disability, then the original waiting period will continue if the number of days you return to work for is no more than 10% of the waiting period.
Goodyear, Minda employees or employees whose employer is a member of TMAA
If you are an employee of Minda or Goodyear or your employer is a member of TMAA, your insurance premiums may be at a higher rate than standard rates. You can however apply to remove your premium loading by satisfactorily answering a few questions.