Insurance perks for common-law partners on the rise
The adoption of insurance products that provide benefits covering common-law partners is gaining ground in the Philippines, with the Razon-led Manila Water Company Inc. rolling out the perk on Jan. 1.
Meanwhile, insurance firms AIA Philippines and PruLifeUK are already offering products for nontraditional family set-ups such as those with single parents, LGBTQI+ partners and adoptive children.
Manila Water said in a statement this move was part of their commitment toward inclusivity, gender equality and employee benefit accessibility. The policy covers regular, probationary and project-based employees.
“To increase our employees’ awareness and engagement, we launched our ‘ToDEI Counts!’ campaign starting with this expanded coverage in our benefits,” said Janine Carreon, director of Manila Water’s corporate human resources group.
“We want to embrace our differences and make Manila Water a place that champions diversity and sustainable development goals,” Carreon said.
She added that the utility firm espouses the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal No. 5, which is the achievement of gender equality.
Carreon said the “breakthrough employee benefit policy” is a huge push in promoting diversity, equity, and inclusivity across the Manila Water enterprise.
In August, AIA Philippines announced it started allowing customers to enlist their same-sex partners as insurance beneficiaries, noting that this move was aligned with the Insurance Commission’s (IC) position on the matter.
The IC has affirmed that any individual, regardless of gender identity, may designate any individual as a beneficiary, subject only to certain exceptions under the Civil Code.
In a legal opinion dated March 4, 2020, the IC said “an individual who has secured a life insurance policy on his or her own life may designate any person as beneficiary.”
However, the IC added that this rule does not apply if the insured and the beneficiary were guilty of adultery or concubinage, and if the beneficiary is a public official or his wife or children or forebears and that such benefit is not allowed in the holding of the government office.
AIA Philippines chief executive Kelvin Ang said everyone should have the means to protect their loved ones from life’s many risks, and expressing love and responsibility to those we care about should not be limited by how we identify as people.
Thus, customers of AIA Philippines can enlist their partners as beneficiaries together with other family members of their existing and future policies, regardless of their marital status
The company added that customers who wish their partners to be sole beneficiaries may still be allowed on a case-to-case basis, requiring documents that show proof of their relationship.
Meanwhile Pru Life UK earlier this year unveiled its product dubbed PRUHealth FamLove, touted as “a first-of-its-kind” yearly renewable life insurance and critical illness plan that protects up to four family members under one policy.
Under this plan, family members also include same-sex or common-law partners, parents, and adoptive children.
The product is designed for customers to share their critical illness protection coverage with different types of family members, including single parents, cohabiting partners, LGBTQ+ partners, and adoptive family members.
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