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Mon, Jan 30, 2023

Insurer enhances education cover to meet global education needs

Emigration is a reality for working South Africans, with many people seeking or thinking about starting a new life abroad. Data released by Statista in 2020 shows that 915 000 South Africans left the country between 2015 and 2020. 

As parents there may be some concerns about whether an insurer would fund their children’s overseas education should they emigrate.

Liberty’s Chief Specialist of Risk Products, Kresantha Pillay says that insurance has had to evolve with the changing needs of the client. “We find that more parents are considering the option of educating their children overseas. We have therefore looked at how our Educator benefit needs to adapt to cater for these evolving needs,” says Pillay.

Where the insured parent is no longer able to provide for their child due to death, disability or critical illness, the benefit offers cover for early childhood development, pre-primary, primary, secondary and university, so their children’s future education remains secure.  “We critically evaluated our Educator benefit to ensure it meets the evolving needs of parents or guardians in this country, in particular those considering emigrating.  We have enhanced this benefit to ensure we have improved its flexibility and comprehensiveness all the way from early childhood development to university, securing the full educational journey of a child so that their future is never in doubt,” says Pillay.

She gives two examples of how Liberty’s Educator benefit would work in the case of emigration: In the first case, the insured breadwinning parent passes away and the child’s education is now being covered by the policy while they are being cared for by the surviving parent. This parent then decides to emigrate overseas. In terms of this cover, the benefit continues to pay for the child’s education overseas up to a rand denominated limit.

In the second example, the insured parents of a child decide to emigrate to the United States to start a new life. This is a time of uncertainty, and they wish to maintain cover while moving to the US, so their financial adviser submits a request for continued cover overseas and this is approved with no further changes to the policy. Thus, there is no break in policy cover during the complex process of emigration and their child’s future education remains secure should the insured parent become critically ill, disabled or pass away.  In addition, if the child beneficiary has special needs and has to attend an approved institution where these needs are catered for, Liberty will cover the tuition fees for that institution subject to a maximum rand limit of 150% of the normal maximum limits of the policy.

University education overseas  

Having established that Liberty is able to pay for your child’s school education overseas, the question then arises if university education is covered in the same way? Pillay says that Liberty automatically offers cover for overseas tertiary education as part of this benefit.  “Many parents who can afford to send their children to leading overseas institutions are doing so, and this reality is also what prompted us to meet this growing client need. We also recognize that South African parents and their children may decide to lead global lifestyles, so we’ve designed cover that keeps their futures on track wherever life’s journey may lead them,” Pillay says.  Cover automatically includes selected overseas institutions upfront, providing up to 98 000 US dollars a year at a qualifying institution and also looks after boarding or residence fees. All other universities fall withing the rand denominated limit.

With this, parents will know that their child will always have the opportunity to benefit from the best possible start in life in this globally integrated world where opportunity might mean moving to a different country.

Parents who want to explore the options of cover available to secure their child’s future should speak to a Liberty financial adviser who can guide them through the multitude of options that are available.

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