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Bima Sugam: How IRDAI’s online insurance marketplace will benefit customers

Bima Sugam is scheduled to be launched in June 2024. It will most likely enhance the user experience with insurance and may boost the wider adoption of insurance policies.

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDAI) approved the setting up of the Bima Sugam platform last week. Bima Sugam is an online insurance marketplace which will be used for buying and selling insurance policies, as well as servicing them and settling claims. In other words, it will be a one-stop shop for all your insurance needs.

  • The policyholder will have their eBima accounts on the portal with all the details of their purchased insurance policies in one place
  • Bima Sugam further will help policyholders to make premium payments, change contact details, nominee details, and more
  • With an online platform reducing distributor margins and eliminating intermediaries, policyholders can also benefit from cheaper premiums

The initiative aims to establish a Digital Public Infrastructure towards universalisation and democratisation of insurance as well as empowering and safeguarding policyholders’ interests and achieve the vision of “Insurance for all by 2047”, said IRDAI in a recent press note. This marketplace can serve as a one-stop solution for all insurance stakeholders, promoting transparency, efficiency, and collaboration across the entire insurance value chain.

What it will mean for customers

The Bima Sugam platform, once operative, will offer several benefits to customers.

“IRDAI’s approval will serve as a regulatory endorsement for consumers, confirming that Bima Sugam operates as a licensed marketplace for insurance products in the country. It will boost their trust in the platform and allow them to benefit from its services without harbouring doubts,”

भारतीय बीमा नियामक और विकास प्राधिकरण (IRDAI) ने एक ही जगह पर एक ही जगह पर ऑनलाइन सभी इंश्योरेंस पॉलिसियों को मुहैया कराने की तैयारी कर ली है। इंश्योरेंस रेगुलेटर भारतीय बीमा नियामक और विकास प्राधिकरण (आईआरडीएआई) ने इलेक्ट्रॉनिक मार्केटप्लेस ‘बीमा सुगम’ या डिजिटल पब्लिक इंफ्रास्ट्रक्चर पर एक एक्सपोजर ड्राफ्ट जारी कर दिया है। इसे एक वन-स्टॉप सॉल्यूशन या प्रोटोकॉल के रूप में माना जा सकता है जिस पर इंश्योरेंस पॉलिसी की खरीद, बिक्री, सर्विसिंग और क्लेम सेटलमेंट से लेकर शिकायतों तक का निपटारा किया जा सकता है। इसके जल्द लॉन्च होने की उम्मीद बढ़ गई है। रिपोर्ट्स के मुताबिक, यह इस साल जून में लॉन्च हो सकती है। इससे पहले बीमा नियामक ने इसे जनवरी 2023 में लॉन्च करने का प्लान बनाया था। मौजूदा समय में लोगों को हेल्थ, लाइफ, प्रॉपर्टी और एक्सीडेंट रिस्क को कवर करने के लिए अलग-अलग इंश्योरेंस पॉलिसी (Insurance Policy) लेनी पड़ती है। मगर इंश्योरेंस सेक्टर का रेगुलेटर इरडा एक ऐसी सिंगल पॉलिसी लाने पर काम कर रहा है, जो हेल्थ, लाइफ और प्रॉपर्टी के इंश्योरेंस को कवर करेगी।

All insurance policies in digital form in one place: 
The policyholder will have their eBima accounts on the portal with all the details of their purchased insurance policies under one portal. “This will give the insurance holders ease of access and the hassle of keeping the hardcopy of documents will be eradicated,”

Bima Sugam further will help policyholders to make premium payments, change contact details, nominee details, and more. “The conversion of policies from physical paper format to e-format will benefit policyholders and reduce the risk of theft and loss of the respective policy,”

Lower costs: With an online platform reducing distributor margins and eliminating intermediaries, policyholders will benefit from cheaper premiums. Additionally, IRDAI may also provide discounts for the policies purchased via the platform.

Easier settlement of claims: The platform is designed to help individuals settle their claims in a paperless process based on just their policy numbers.

“Since all insurance plans will be linked and stored under one platform, the insurance company can access the required details immediately. It will simplify the documentation process, making the claim settlement process quick and hassle-free. Needless to say, such a move could streamline the settlement process for policy nominees, especially in the face of an emergency,”

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