The Long Read

Everything you *need to know* is right above this. Scroll down, only if you'd still like to read more (honestly, why?)

Yes, you can buy riders after buying a term insurance plan but you can only do so on the policy anniversary i.e. the date when your policy completes 1 full year, after coming into effect. 


For example:


  • your 1st policy anniversary is that date when your policy completes 1 year

  • your 2nd policy anniversary is the day when your policy completes 2 years

While riders and optional benefits in term insurance may sound similar, they are not the same. 


Optional benefits are additional benefits that:

  • You can opt for at the time of purchasing a term plan, and not after purchase

  • May or may not have a cost attached to them

  • Have the same eligibility and other criteria as the base term plan 

For example, some insurers may offer return of premiums as an optional benefit. 


Riders are add-ons that:

  • You can buy either at the time of purchasing the term plan or on any policy anniversary

  • Have some additional costs attached to them 

  • Can be denied to you if you do not meet the rider-specific eligibility criteria, even though you are eligible for getting term insurance 

For example, some insurers may offer critical illness cover as a rider. 


Note: What is offered as an optional benefit and what is offered as a rider may vary from insurer to insurer. It is best to check with your insurer to know what they are offering as optional benefits and riders. 


It’s simple. Here’s how:

  • During the term plan application process, your term insurance company will offer you multiple riders that you can choose and add to your policy

  • Based on your needs, you can decide on the appropriate riders, their cover, and other relevant rider details to ensure that they suit your requirements best

  • After selecting the relevant riders, you will have to pay an additional premium for the selected riders

Here are some simple steps to follow to buy riders after buying a term plan. 


Firstly, know what riders you require based on your needs. You can check out the KlarifyLife Term Guide to understand this better. 


Remember, riders can be added to your existing term policy on any subsequent policy anniversary. But since certain riders may have eligibility criteria that you need to meet before adding them, it is advisable that you reach out to your insurer before your policy anniversary. 


The insurer will help you understand what riders you are eligible for so that on the day of your policy anniversary, you can directly add those to your plan and pay the additional premium for the added riders. 

Yes, you can remove riders from your policy only on your policy anniversary. 


You will need to contact your insurer then and tell them what riders you want to remove. Post that, your premium will be adjusted, since you no longer have the riders.

Certain riders may cost you more if you buy them later, after buying a term plan. For example, if you opt for a critical illness rider in year 2 of your term insurance, the rider may become more expensive because of factors such as your age, health conditions, etc., compared to what it may have cost had you bought it along with your term plan. 

Sometimes, certain riders may be outright denied to you. For example, if you're disabled from an accident after buying a term plan, you may not be able to buy a Permanent Disability Rider. It will, of course, vary from insurer to insurer, so you should check with your life insurance company about it. 

Unfortunately, yes, you can be rejected for a rider, even if your term plan is approved. Riders are like mini-plans with their eligibility criteria and T&Cs. Getting rejected for a rider can be due to factors like age, gender, medical history, cover amount, premium amount exceeding a certain value, etc.


For example, say, you have developed an unhealthy lifestyle post purchasing your term insurance or your family has seen a case of cancer. In such cases, if you apply to get a critical illness rider, then you may be rejected because of the new developments, your insurer may feel that you are too risky to offer a critical illness rider. 


In such cases, you can speak to your insurer or insurance advisor to understand the reason for rejection.