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MPO guide to health insurance renewals

In this guide, we’ll look at how health insurance renewals work for existing policyholders and some Top Tips to help save you time and money

A photo of Daniel Sharpe-Szunko, the author

By Daniel Sharpe-Szunko

Published on: 26 September 2023

8 min read

MPO guide to health insurance renewals

One of the key differences between health insurance and other types of personal protection policies, is that you will have an annual renewal. This works in a similar way to car and home insurance which means that you’ll receive a renewal notification every 12 months just before your policy anniversary.

Health insurance renewals can be slightly confusing for policyholders so it’s important to understand the process and what you need to think about. You can also save money on your health insurance by shopping around and getting renewal quotes from other insurance companies.

There can be some nasty surprises when it comes to health insurance renewal time, especially if you’ve made a claim in the past 12 months. Renewing insurance can be frustrating and time consuming, but it is worth doing usually to keep premiums low and make sure that you’ve got the best cover.

In this guide, we’ll look at how health insurance renewals work for existing policyholders and some Top Tips to help save you time and money.

QUICK SUMMARY – Getting the most out of your Health Insurance renewals

When you renew your health insurance you might not understand all your options or what you need to do. The main things to remember are:

  • Health insurance gets renewed annually – but you don’t need to stay with your current provider if you don’t want to
  • You can save money by shopping around and comparing quotes from other providers
  • Your provider will get in touch with details about your renewal (you shouldn’t need to contact them first)
  • You can speak to a health insurance specialist if you need more help and advice about renewing your policy

Health insurance renewal is the process of renewing your health insurance cover for another year. It’s pretty simple and your provider will get in touch with you when it’s time to renew your policy.

There are a few important things to remember when renewing health insurance:

1. You might end up paying more now

Chances are your price might change from the price you’re paying at the moment. Your provider won’t blind side you with this, they will let you know if your price is changing. Normally prices will go up because you’re another year older and they might increase more if you’ve claimed within the last year.

Consider carefully if you can afford to pay more, even if it’s only a small increase. We’d suggest thinking about adding no claims discount to your policy if you can. If you haven’t needed to claim within the last year, you then benefit from a lower price this year.

2. Check what other insurers can offer you

Every insurer wants to be the biggest and the best, so they’re always thinking of new discounts and ways to bring in new customers. This is great for consumers as it can help you save money.

It’s not always easy to compare health insurance policies which is where comparison sites or getting some extra advice can be useful. if the main thing you worried about is cost price comparison sites should be able to give you an idea of which providers have the best prices.

if you want to compare features of policy use this can be a bit trickier. Health insurance policies can vary wildly in the way they work and what features and benefits are included. A health insurance specialist can quickly compare policies for you and explain everything, so you know exactly what’s going on with your cover.

3. You might want a different type of policy now

A few years ago you might have decided on family health insurance to protect your partner in your children. If your situation has changed (e.g. you’re no longer with your partner, your children have grown up) you might want to switch to an individual plan.

After all there’s no point paying for more cover than you really need – it’s just a waste of money.

There are loads of different options for health insurance in the UK and different types of policies available. This gives you a good range of choices for the cover you need.

Renewing your health insurance is something that you have to do every year. It’s important to think carefully about whether your provider is still working well for you.

Whether you’ve been with your insurer for one year five years or 10 years, you don’t have to stick with them if you don’t want to. You should always take the time to consider:

  • Is health insurance still right for you?
  • Is it something that you can afford?
  • Does it work with your budget and your lifestyle?

If the answer to any of these questions is no, you might decide not to take out health insurance for another year. This is completely fine, just because you’ve had health insurance doesn’t mean that you always have to have it.

Even if you answered yes to all those questions, you should still assess if you are happy with what your provider is offering. Something that’s great about health insurance is that lots of providers will offer discounts or rewards to their customers. The best example of this is Vitality who have a massive reward scheme to give their members discounts on things like holidays, cinema tickets and more.

Do I need to renew my health insurance with my current provider?

No there’s no need to worry that once you pick a provider you’re locked in for life. This is never true no matter what type of insurance policy you’re buying. You’ve always got the option to cancel your cover at any point or not to renew it when you’re asked.

Can I switch to a new insurer instead of renewing?

Of course you can. You’re never stuck with an insurance provider, though we understand it can feel like a lot of hassle to switch. It’s actually quite easy to switch over health insurance as most policies will only last for one year.

When are health insurance policies renewed?

Most of the time your health insurance policy will need to be renewed every year. Your insurer should get in touch just before your policy is 12 months old.

Why is it good to renew your health insurance?

You may think it’s a bit of a hassle to sign onto an insurance policy that you will have to renew every year. However we think that this is actually a good thing, as you’re forced to think about what you need for your health insurance on a regular basis.

Remember as well that other types of insurance such as car insurance or home insurance also have one year policy terms, so health insurance isn’t unusual in this way.

When it’s time to renew your cover, you should think about if you feel like your insurer has given you good value for money within the last year. It’s possible that you might realise that you’ve spent more than you needed to, because you’ve kept benefits that you don’t really need.

How do I renew health insurance?

The main question people tend to have is ‘how do I renew my health insurance?’. Don’t worry, you don’t need to go through a full application process again if you’re sticking with the same provider.

The insurer should tell you how much your cover will cost for the next year if you stay with them. They may also let you know about any new benefits that you could add to your policy or any other changes.

Will my provider contact me when I need to renew?

Yes, your insurance provider should get in touch when it comes time to renew your policy. Most insurers will contact you a few weeks before the renewal date. This gives you time to think about if you want to keep your policy for another year or not.

Will the price go up when I renew my health insurance policy?

Annoyingly your price might go up when you renew your cover which is why it’s important to think about all your options. As with other types of insurance, your age will have an impact on how much you pay. As you renew your cover every year, you will be one year older and so your price might go up.

Does health insurance automatically renew?

This depends on the insurance provider that you’ve chosen. some health insurance companies will renew your policy automatically once you hit the policy renewal date. this can be useful if you have no interest in changing your policy and don’t have the time to sort out the renewal yourself.

Keep an eye out for your insurer contacting you around a year after you bought your policy. they will normally get in touch a few weeks before to let you know they’re going to renew your policy for another year. Understandably, things may have changed since you bought policy and you might not want it anymore.

Luckily it’s really easy to not renew your cover. All you have to do is get in touch with them and tell them you don’t want to renew your policy for another year. If your provider doesn’t automatically renew you won’t have to do anything at all.

Insurers that will automatically renew policies are:

Your renewal date is the date that your policy will reset for another year. this is normally 12 months after you initially bought your policy.

How does renewing health insurance affect my policy?

It doesn’t – unless you want it to. You don’t need to change your policy and you can stick with the exact same terms as you had last year.

The only thing that might change is the price. Whether the price goes up or down depends on you. If you’ve claimed in the last year you might see prices rise, and if you haven’t your price might be lower now (no claims discount).

If you need some advice about what to do when renewing health insurance, it’s best to speak to a health insurance expert. For extra support and guidance, you can speak to our health insurance partners on 0800 009 6559 or click here.

Useful health insurance guides

Here are more of our recent MPO news and guides about health insurance and health related topics.

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