IRDAI allows life insurers to issue policies electronically due to Covid-19

Amid rising cases of coronavirus and disruption in normal business activities, regulator IRDAI on Tuesday allowed life insurers to issue life insurance policies electronically.

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) issued a circular exempting the life insurance companies from the requirement of issuing policy documents and copy of proposal form in physical form, subject to certain conditions.

This exemption will be valid for all policies issued during 2020-21, it said.

The decision, according to the regulator, follows the feedback received from the life insurers expressing difficulties in printing and dispatch of policy documents and also the desirability of adopting digital means of doing business in the interests of policyholders and other stakeholders.

The regulator further said there will be a mandatory 30-day free look period for all such electronic policy documents.

Also, the insurer will be required to obtain the express consent of the policyholder to receive an electronic policy bond. If a policyholder insists on hard copy, the same has to be issued without any charge, it added.

Meanwhile, the regulator has also permitted the life insurers to file quarterly investment returns electronically.