If you or a family member are planning on visiting the U.S. from India, you're probably looking at purchasing visitors medical insurance and/or trip insurance. As an Indian citizen you might be wondering if you should buy your Visitors Insurance from India or the U.S.
Although an Indian-based insurance company might offer a less expensive policy, you must consider several other factors when purchasing visitors medical insurance from an Indian-based insurance carrier.
Cons to Purchasing Visitors Insurance from India
- In the case of a disputed claim filed in the United States, there might be an issue of regulatory jurisdiction. Indian insurance regulators might not recognize your dispute. On the other hand, U.S.-based insurance providers, being fully regulated, can pay heed to any disputes that may arise.
- You might be required to pay upfront if your hospital or doctor in U.S. does not recognize your insurance. Then you might file the claim with your insurance provider in India for reimbursement. However, claim processing in India might result in time administrative difficulties when working with the insurance agency.
- If you need immediate assistance, connecting with customer support of an Indian insurance provider might be difficult, as it might be unavailable in the U.S. time zone. This might cause delay at the time of need when you need assistance or have to file claims.
- Most Indian insurance providers do not offer renewable policies. Make sure you are aware of all the policy conditions. Find out whether you can renew the insurance if your family member extends their trip.
- Almost all Indian visitors insurance providers offer limited coverage plans, which don't offer much selection.
- Indian insurance regulations might not be able to protect your rights when you are within U.S. jurisdiction.
- A U.S.-based insurance company can be a better choice, since it's subject to U.S. insurance regulations.
- Since some Indian insurance providers are new to the field, they might not be able to provide you with the much-needed support.
- Many Indian plans are not cancellable or refundable. This means you might not get a refund if you have an emergency and have to return to India early. Many insurance providers in the U.S., however, offer a Cancel for any Reason (CFAR) benefits with their insurance plans. This is especially useful in the era of COVID-19.