Buying Insurance in Cyprus
- How can I buy insurance?
The most common choice is to buy an insurance through an individual agent, who is able to advise you on the various types of insurance and help you decide what best suits your needs.
Another option is to do your own research and buy directly through an insurance company. You can reach a company in person, by phone, or even on the internet.
Besides, you can purchase some insurance products from external authorised suppliers and institutions, e.g. your bank.
Whatever your choice, make sure you are buying from an authorised, reliable provider, who will answer your questions and will be crystal clear about your options…
You can find a very helpful list of insurance companies that are members of the Association of Insurance Companies of Cyprus on our website: www.iac.org.com.
2. Important questions to ask before buying an insurance
First of all, it is really crucial to ask your insurance provider what your insurance policy does not cover. Also: What options do you have? How much will it cost you? It is important that you are adequately informed before making the right decision.
More specifically, we strongly recommend that you:
• ask about the risks that your insurance policy will cover, as well as any additional coverages you can secure,
• learn about the exemptions that will be included in your insurance contract and which of them can be covered, if necessary, with a minor additional premium,
• ask for a rough copy of your insurance contract. Read it carefully, write down any queries you may have and ask for clarifications from the insurance agent of your choice, before making your final decision.
• Shop around: get offers and information from other sources too, insurance companies or intermediaries, to form a complete view of the market.
Finally, keep in mind that you may are already partially covered from various other sources. For example, your employer, the manager of your apartment building, your credit card provider may provide you with some insurance coverage as a part of a benefit package, under certain conditions. Why not investigate these possibilities too?
3. According to the law, what are my rights regarding the information I should be provided with before buying an insurance?
By law, each insurance company or intermediary must provide you with certain information, such as the full details of the company and/or the intermediary, the law that regulates the insurance contract, and the procedure to be followed in case you have a complaint.
In detail, if the insurance is through an insurance intermediary, he should provide you with the following information:
• Is there a conflict of interest with the insurance company he proposes?
• Do you have the right to lodge complaints against ombudsmen, and what is the exact procedure that you should follow in that case?
• The insurance policy that he proposes derives exclusively from the insurance companies he cooperates with or from the wider market, through an unbiased analysis?
• Does your insurance contract stipulates that the premiums he collects are not considered to have been collected by the insurance company?
• The ombudsman should, based on the information you have provided, clarify your requirements and needs and the reasons on which his advice on the insurance product he proposes to you is based.
• Especially for a life insurance, together with the invitation, ask to be given the relevant prospectus, with all the information provided by law.
4. What information should I provide when buying the insurance?
As a general rule, the information required for insurance purposes is included in a form called an insurance application. Please, be thorough and make sure that all the answers you write down are correct and true. Even if there is no specific question, make sure that you have not hidden any fact that would affect the insurance company’s judgment in accepting or not the risk. Otherwise, and since your answers are the basis of your insurance policy, you risk even being left unprotected!
And two last tips:
Never sign an insurance offer that is not official and complete.
If there are corrections in the insurance proposal, make sure you initial them.