Monday, June 14, 2021

How Do I Get Free Money For Getting An Annual Physical?

Sometimes I feel as if I do nothing but discuss life insurance on this blog, when there are plenty of other kinds of insurance to talk about. Yes, from time to time I will write about the need for disability insurance (part of my "Holy Trinity of Insurance") as well as other plans, but I don't feel as if I'm doing them all justice. Especially when it comes to one of the best features on these policies.

Many of these "ancillary" or "voluntary" policies on the market, such as cancer plans, accident plans and critical illness plan, offer a "wellness" or "health screening" benefit.  These benefits give you the incentive to do what you should be doing anyway - getting a check up. The insurance company does not offer wellness benefits available out of the goodness of their hearts. Instead, if they can encourage their policy holders to have an annual checkup, the odds are good that if something is found, it will be caught early and be treatable, thus saving the company money when a claim happens.

Sales agents will use a wellness benefit as part of their presentation and rightly so.  For example, if someone were to purchase a policy that costs around $200* a year and they get back $75 just for getting a check up, the policy really cost about $125.  And if you are buying through payroll deduction and it qualifies to be pre-taxed, you're saving even more!

On those occasions when I do group presentations about these kinds of products, I let the employees know about the wellness benefits and how they vary from policy to policy. I also ask if anyone in the group has received their wellness benefits and hands go up. There's usually some chatter amongst the crowd about how easy it is to get that "free money" as they call it.

Of course, the important part is to remember to get a check up and file the claim.  Unfortunately, too many people fail to file their wellness claims.  Here are a couple of ways to make sure you get your money:
  1.  If you have a plan through work, have your HR person keep "originals" of wellness claim forms in a file cabinet.  You can make a copy of it and remit to the company without having to call your agent. 
  2. Many of the insurance companies have gone to an online claims process which is even faster and easier. 
  3. When you do get a check up, let everyone know.  Inevitably, someone will say, "Did you file your wellness claim?"  Co-workers talk to each other.
  4. When you set your appointment for your check up, set a Google reminder for your claim as well.
I work with one agent who owns every single type of these insurance plans. When he goes to the doctor for his annual check up, he "rings the register" as he files his wellness claim on each and every policy. He'll say things like, "I needed to get checked out, so I may as well make a few hundred on the deal." 

And the interesting part is that this agent, who is in his mid 40's, suffered a mild stroke a few years ago. While his major medical paid the majority of his doctor and hospital bills, his Hospital Indemnity plan paid a benefit directly to him which helped with his deductibles and other out-of-pocket expenses.

The good news is that you don't have to be part of a group to get one of these plans. We offer them on an individual basis for those who are self-employed or don't have plans like this offered through work. If you are interested in a plan like this, check out our website. You can run your own quote on cancer and accident plans as well as hospital indemnity. If you have questions, drop us a note. 

*These numbers are made up, but probably in the ballpark.

Chris Castanes is the president of Surf Financial Brokers, helping people find affordable life, disability, long term care, cancer, accident and other insurance coverages in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee and Georgia. He's also is a professional speaker helping sales people be more productive and efficient, and has spoken to professional and civic organizations throughout the Southeast. And please subscribe to this blog! 

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