IRDAI Bima Sugam: Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai), recently announced the launch of Bima Sugam—an online marketplace that will house all companies selling life and non-life insurance on a single platform. The portal is scheduled to go live on January 1, 2023.
In a bid to digitise the insurance marketplace to the benefit of policyholders, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has launched Bima Sugam. Literally translating to easy insurance, Bima Sugam is an online marketplace offering a spot to all sellers of insurance on a single platform. The online platform, encompassing both life and non-life insurance, is set to go live on January 1, 2023.
Multiple insurance-related processes, including buying and selling of policies, keeping details of the current policy handy (portability facilities), settling claims, and changing insurance agents, will be accessible via Bima Sugam. It allows buyers to purchase life, motor, or health insurance policies directly. These facilities will be available to customers via an electronic insurance account (E-IA).
Bima Sugam will have a largely democratised ownership pattern. Multiple insurance companies providing general and life insurance are expected to become significant shareholders of the one-stop online insurance platform.
Bima Sugam also envisions web aggregators like PolicyX and PolicyBazaar, banks, brokers, and insurance agents serving as facilitators in peddling insurance policies to customers.
Capitalising on the prospect of centralised data that will be available on the platform, once people start using it, Bima Sugam will give buyers a great variety of policy options to pick from. It will also reduce the cost of policies falling on the client’s head by reducing the amount one often needs to pay to the intermediaries. The new initiative is also expected to allow for the faster acceptance of new/sandbox products.
The forum will thrust for end-to-end digitisation of the insurance-selling ecosystem. It will rely on policyholders giving consent via Aadhaar verification. This will be necessary for clients to be able to access policies. Policyholders who have signed up to be a part of the forum will get their E-Bima or E-insurance accounts. Using these, they will be able to view their policies and file a claim. All the information stored in one place would make claim settlement a more comfortable process for nominees/beneficiaries.
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