News

Changing insurance arrangements from 1 October 2016

Posted 8 July 2016 9:21am

Changing insurance arrangements from 1 October 2016 – introducing lifePLUS cover

A notice regarding the introduction of lifePLUS cover was sent to members from 11 July 2016. The text of the notice is as follows.

Changing PSSap insurance arrangements from 1 October 2016 - Introducing lifePLUS cover.

We're writing to let you know about important changes to the insurance offered to PSSap members, which will apply from 1 October 2016. These changes offer cover which reflects the changing needs of our members, and are designed to better enable you to have the right level of cover for your situation.

This notice (which consists of this notice and the Booklet) also explains what you need to do, and where to find more information.

What's changing?

From 1 October 2016, PSSap will introduce lifePLUS cover, which will be available exclusively for PSSap members. This is a new approach to Income Protection and Death and Disability insurance. lifePLUS cover has two offerings:

  • lifePLUS auto cover – the default insurance offered to new members, as well as some existing PSSap members, and
  • lifePLUS choice cover – insurance which gives you the ability to customise your insurance for your circumstances.

To find out which offering is available to you, please refer to the Booklet. You will need to know your Insurance Category, details of which are below.

On 1 October 2106, the current Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) will be replaced. The Booklet, which will be part of the new PDS, will contain details of the cover that will apply from 1 October 2016.

Why these changes are necessary

PSSap insurance is a valuable part of your overall superannuation benefits, and part of our service is making sure that this insurance continues to meet the needs of members.

Over the past two years, we have conducted a thorough review of our insurance offering. We identified a need to change for the following reasons:

Members needs have changed

We identified that our members' needs have changed, which requires us to adapt our approach. For example, we saw a need to improve income protection benefits while members underwent treatment and rehabilitation.

We're also mindful that our members want to continue contributing to their retirement fund even if they're prevented from working due to illness or injury.

For this reason, we made the decision to provide more comprehensive default insurance via lifePLUS auto cover. More information on the changes is located in the Booklet.

Australian public service career patterns are changing

In recent years, we have seen career patterns change. Today, many PSSap members are working in the Australian Public Service (APS) intermittently, taking career breaks as well as continuing to work later in life.

For this reason, we have decided to support members by allowing members to retain certain insurance benefits while they move in and out of APS employment.

We've also decided to extend the maximum age for Income Protection cover from 65 to 67.

The price of insurance has increased

The superannuation industry has experienced an increase in the cost of insurance over the past several years. These increased costs have been driven largely by an increase in the number of claims received. PSSap is no exception.

While we have managed to keep premium rates unchanged for the previous three years, we now need to increase premiums to accurately reflect insurance costs.

Your current insurance cover

We will now outline your current levels of insurance cover. Read this information carefully, as it determines what cover you'll be eligible for under the new arrangements from 1 October 2016.

Member Number: Individual Information

Based on our records as at 30 June 2016, your current insurance cover is:

  1. Death cover: Individual Information
  2. TPD cover: Individual Information
  3. Income protection cover:Individual Information
    • Waiting period Individual Information
    • Benefit amount Individual Information
    • Benefit period Individual Information

Your current insurance cover described above means that you will be in the following Insurance Category: Individual Information.

This category is described in the Booklet, and the purpose of identifying this category is to help us explain how your insurance will change under the new arrangements.

Refer to section 5 of the Booklet. This section outlines how insurance for members in your category will change from 1 October 2016. This section also explains your options for varying your cover.

You may also log into your PSSap online account to confirm your existing levels of cover.

Do you need to do anything?

All existing PSSap members will be transferred to either lifePLUS auto, or lifePLUS choice, depending on their current level of cover and Insurance Category (see ‘Your current insurance cover’ for your category).

If you are classified as Insurance Category 1 or 2 and want to change your cover, complete the PSSap insurance election form and return it to us no later than Friday 2 September 2016.

Make sure you understand what these changes mean for you. You can do this by:

  • noting the Insurance Category that has been identified as applying to you; and
  • carefully reading the Booklet to understand how your insurance will change from 1 October 2016.

Temporary restrictions to service

To prepare for these changes, we are upgrading our systems. As a result, between 2 September 2016 and 1 October 2016, we will not be processing most requests to change insurance. The exception to this is requests to cancel all cover.

If you would like to change your cover, please do this before 2 September 2016, or from 1 October 2016.

Other services (including investment changes and processing contributions) will continue as normal until 5pm on the 27 September 2016 when the processing of certain member transactions (including investment switches and roll-ins, contributions and benefit payments) will be deferred until the system upgrade has been completed. More information regarding this deferral period will be provided via pssap.gov.au closer to the time.

Where to get advice & information

Before making a decision, visit pssap.gov.au/lifepluscover for more information about current and future insurance arrangements. In the Booklet, you'll also find details of where to get more information.

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