INSURANCE REPOSITORIES (IR)
What is Insurance Repository system (IR)?
IRDAI has introduced the IR system to provide policyholders a facility to keep insurance policies in electronic form and to undertake changes, modifications and revisions in the insurance policy with speed and accuracy in order to bring about efficiency, transparency and cost reduction in the issuance and maintenance of insurance policies.
When IR system was introduced?
IRDAI has introduced the concept of insurance repository in the year 2011.
Is there any regulations/guidelines/circulars issued governing the IR?
Yes. IRDAI has issued Guidelines on Insurance Repositories and electronic issuance of insurance policies dated 29th April 2011, Circular for Procedure for appointment of Approved Persons dated 18th July 2013 and revised guidelines on Insurance Repositories and electronic issuance of insurance policies dated 29th May 2015.
Who is Approved Person?
Approved Person means an entity approved and appointed by an insurance repository as its agent to perform certain assigned tasks in relation to and incidental to the functions of Insurance Repository.
What is e-Insurance Account? (eIA)
eIA is an electronic account opened by a person with an insurance repository wherein the portfolio of insurance policies of policyholder is held in electronic form.
What is e-Insurance policy?
e-insurance policy is a policy document which is an evident of insurance contract issued by an insurer digitally signed in accordance with the applicable provisions prescribed by law and issued in an electronic form directly to the policyholder or through the platform registered insurance repository
What is iTrex (Insurance Transaction Exchange)?
iTerx is a central index server that offers de-duplication services and acts as a KYC repository, messaging servicing hub between entities creating eIAs, electronic policies and their servicing.
Is FDI allowed in Insurance Repository?
Can Insurance Repository sell/solicit Insurance policy?
No, Insurance repositories cannot sell/solicit insurance policies. They are authorized only to maintain the policies in electronic form and provide a service record of all insurance policies.
Do I need to pay for opening of e-Insurance Account or on periodic basis?
NO. e-Insurance Account is offered ‘free of cost’ to the applicants.
Can any individual open more than one e-Insurance Account with any Insurance Repository?
NO. As per the IRDAI guidelines, an individual cannot open multiple e-Insurance Accounts.
What are the requirements to be completed for opening an e-Insurance Account?
An e-Insurance Account holder or policyholder is required to a. Fill the e-Insurance Account form and b. Submit • Photo ID, • Recent passport size photograph, • Cancelled Cheque (In case of ECS/NEFT services for Insurance premium payment transaction) and • Address proof to the office of Insurance Repository or Insurance company or authorized Approved Person (AP) appointed by Insurance Repository.
Can I open an e-Insurance Account without having a life or non-life policy for my own self?
Yes, an individual who is not having any Insurance policy can open an e-Insurance Account. After buying a policy, the policyholder can give a request for dematerialization to the Insurer or Insurance Repository or Approved Person.
Can I convert my existing paper polices into electronic policies?
Yes, it is possible to convert the existing paper policies into electronic form. A service request may be made to the Insurance Repository or Insurer or the Approved person in this regard.
If I already have an e-Insurance Account, how do I buy a new policy in electronic form?
Once you have opened an e Insurance Account, to buy a new policy in electronic form, you just need to quote your unique e-Insurance Account number in your new insurance proposal form and make a request to issue policy in an electronic form.
Which are the Insurance policies that can be held in electronic form?
All Life insurance, Health insurance, General insurance & Annuity policies that are issued by registered insurance companies with IRDAI and who have signed up with the Insurance Repositories are eligible to be held in the electronic form.
How can I come to know that my policy is successfully credited into my eInsurance Account?
You will receive a confirmation mail and SMS on your registered e-mail id and mobile number.
What are the benefits of holding Insurance Policies in electronic form?
The following are the broad benefits of holding Insurance Policies in electronic form: Safety: There is no risk of loss or damage of a policy as is common with paper policies; the electronic form ensures that the policies are in safe custody and can be easily accessed whenever and wherever needed. A copy of the policy can be downloaded at any time by accessing the e-Insurance Account. Convenience: All Insurance policies, be it life, pension, health or general, can be electronically held under a single e-Insurance Account. This means all details of all policies are available in a single account (place). The details of any of the policies can be accessed at any time by logging on to the online portal of Insurance Repository. Single Point of Service: Service requests in respect of e-Insurance Account or any of the electronic policy can be submitted at any of Insurance Repository’s service points. A single request can sometimes cater to the requirements of several Insurers. As an illustration, a single change of address request made to the Insurance Repository can update the policies issued by multiple Insurers. There would be no need to go to several offices of individual Insurers for service. Less Paper work and savings in time: An e-Insurance Account holder is freed from the trouble of submitting KYC details each time a new policy is taken. Further, any changes in personal details like address or contact number can be effected through a single request thus saving on paper and time. Statement of Account: At least once every year, the Insurance Repository would send a statement of account to the e-Insurance Account holder with the details of the policies of the account holder. Payment Options: Premium for all the policies can be paid online and several service requests can be logged from the e-Insurance Account. Increased number of service touch points: Since, the Insurance Repositories function in addition to the Insurers, the policyholders will have increased number of touch points for having their servicing needs attended. Easy payout transfers: Policy benefits would be paid through electronic facility to the registered bank account, thus ensuring speedier and convenient settlement. Single view: Single view of all policies will be made available to an authorized person in case of death of the e-Insurance Account holder.
What are all the details will be available in the e-insurance Account?
A list of all policies that are credited will be available in the e-Insurance Account. For each policy, policy level details like the status, commencement, maturity/expiry, nomination, assignment, endorsement, address, terms and conditions etc., would be available. In addition, the e-Insurance Account holder will be able to download a copy of the policy bond.
What is the procedure to effect changes in my policy or e-Insurance Account? Should the request be made to the Insurance Company or Insurance Repository?
All requests in respect of either your e-Insurance Account or any of the electronic policies may be made to the Insurance Repository. However, requests in respect of the policies can also be made directly with the Insurer concerned. Upon a request, the Insurance Repository would handle all servicing needs that fall within scope of their services directly and would forward the others to the Insurer concerned. An update to the policyholder would be provided by the Insurance Repository on the status of the request in respect of all the requests that it receives.
Who is an Authorized Representative and what is his/her role?
An Authorized Representative is a person who is appointed by e-Insurance Account holder to operate his/her e-Insurance Account in case of unfortunate demise or incapability of e-Insurance Account holder to operate the account. The Authorized Representative will intimate the Insurance Repository about the demise/incapability of policyholder with valid proof. An Authorized Representative has only access rights to the e-Insurance Account in the event of demise of the policy holder. The Authorized Representative would only to act as a facilitator and is not entitled to receive any policy benefits unless designated as a ‘nominee’ or ‘assignee’ by the deceased policy holder.
Can an Authorized Representative be changed?
Yes. Authorized Representative can be changed by making a request to the Insurance Repository.
Can ‘Nominee’ and ‘Authorized Representative’ be the same person?
Yes, both Nominee and Authorized Representative can be the same person.
What is the grievances redressal mechanism at Insurance Repository?
Every Insurance Repository will have a policyholders’ grievances cell to address the grievances in respect of repository services and electronic policies held by them.
Is it possible to opt out of the Insurance Repository system?
Yes, the policyholder shall make a request to his insurer and upon completion of all formalities in respect of the same, the hard copy of the policy document shall be made available.
How will the Authorized person deal with the e-Insurance Account?
After the demise of the e-Insurance Account holder and after settlement of all Insurance claims, the Authorized representative needs to make a request to the Insurance Repository to close the e-Insurance Account.