Insurers focus on disability income policies

Jiji PressTOKYO (Jiji Press) — Japanese insurers are putting more focus on disability income insurance policies, including those designed for companies, to offer protection against the loss of income due to illness or injury.

The products, which are less susceptible to interest rate swings, are lucrative for the insurance companies as they have been suffering anemic investment returns amid the Bank of Japan’s prolonged negative interest rate policy.

Disability insurance pays monthly benefits and provides other merits for policyholders who become unable to work for a long time due to hospital treatment or serious physical impairment after illness or injury. Such benefits can be used to pay living costs that medical insurance does not usually cover.

Since last year, nine insurers, including Lifenet Insurance Co. and Sumitomo Life Insurance Co., have launched disability income insurance policies for individual customers. In October, Nippon Life Insurance Co. and Tokio Marine & Nichido Fire Insurance Co. will follow suit.

Details of insurance policies differ from insurer to insurer.

Products from Nippon Life feature wide coverage, including for recuperation at home and hospitalization for mental disorder. For a 30-year-old man, a 35-year disability insurance contract that guarantees benefits of ¥100,000 per month is available for a monthly premium of ¥3,520.

“With the number of single-member households increasing amid the trend to remain unmarried or marry late, there is a growing need for defense against the risk of not being able to work,” a Nippon Life official said.Speech

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