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Eligibility for funeral cover: who qualifies

17 May 2024
4 minute read

Do you want to take out funeral insurance but not sure if you meet the requirements for funeral cover policies? Good news! We investigated and found that South Africans can take out funeral policies with registered insurers if they meet the eligibility criteria – and that these are not extensive, and the majority of South Africans will qualify for cover and can take out funeral insurance.

Members and additional members on your funeral policy: what you need to know

People covered on funeral policies are known as members. It is important to distinguish between two types of members, the main member and additional members. The main member on a funeral policy is the person who takes out the policy and is responsible for paying the premiums. Additional members are family members and extended family members also covered on the policy, such as the spouse or child of the main member, aunts and uncles and grandparents.

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Key requirements for funeral cover

There are three requirements for main and additional members on funeral cover policies.

1. You must be a South African citizen or resident

South African funeral policies can be taken out by South African citizens, some foreign nationals and permanent residents, depending on the requirements of your insurer. Some insurers only offer funeral cover for South African citizens, while others may offer cover to permanent residents and foreign nationals. In some cases, permanent residents and foreign nationals may only be covered as additional members. These details should be on the insurer’s website, but ask if you are unsure.

2. You must meet the insurer’s age requirements

These may differ for main and additional members.

Main members: You have to be over 18 years to take out a funeral policy. When it comes to a maximum age limit, insurers differ in their requirements. Some allow people up to 65 years to take out a policy, others over 70, some even over 80.

Additional members: Children can be covered on funeral policies as additional members, and in some cases only until they are 21 or older if they are full time students. Adults can be covered as additional members up to a specified age such as 74 years, which differs from insurer to insurer. In some cases, there are additional requirements for older members, such as a once off premium payment.

3. Additional members must be related to the main member

Each insurer has definitions of who qualifies as an additional member, which depends on their relationship to the main member. Spouses, life partners, parents and children of the main member are immediate family and usually qualify as additional members. Extended family members such as siblings, aunts, uncles and cousins, by birth, adoption or marriage, may also qualify as additional family members.

If an additional member does not meet the insurer’s definitions claims may be declined, so make sure of the relationships of additional members to main members and that they meet your insurer’s requirements for funeral cover. Your insurer should list these on their website or you can contact them for full details. The definitions of additional members that apply to your policy will also be stated on your policy documents.

Questions an insurer won’t ask you

Most funeral policies are not underwritten, which means insurers won’t look at occupation, income or health when you apply for funeral cover. This not only means you don’t have to give out your personal medical information, but also that no insurer can reject your application based on your health!

Funeral policies are easy to buy and easy to manage

Insurers know how important funeral insurance is so they make sure most South Africans meet the eligibility requirements. Licensed insurers make their policies easy to buy and explain policy terms and conditions in plain language.  Claims processes are easy to follow and require minimum documentation so valid claims can be paid quickly. The vast majority of claims are paid within 48 hours of all documentation being received. Importantly, premiums are kept affordable and each member can select a different sum assured, within regulations and the limits allowed by the insurer, such as R50 000 maximum cover for a main member.

Online applications for 1Life Funeral Cover

You can get a 1Life Insurance quote and buy funeral cover online, saving up to 40% on monthly premiums! Funeral policies can be accessed and managed online using the online policyholder services portal and WhatsApp service centre. This allows you to manage your policy in your own time, safely and securely.

Eligible for funeral cover? Why not apply today

Funeral insurance policies are available to most South Africans. Nearly half of all South Africans have funeral cover as they know it can help pay for a respectable funeral, without burdening family members and friends with further generational debt! Do you have your funeral cover in place? Visit 1Life Insurance today to get a quote and buy online so you and your family have the funeral cover you need!

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