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Private accident insurance - superfluous or useful?

What kind of insurance is an accident?

The insurance companies define an accident as follows:

"An accident occurs when the insured person involuntarily suffers damage to his health as a result of an external event that suddenly affects his body."

  • "Suddenly" means that the event occurred within a relatively short period of time have to be. Damage to health through, for example, long-term exercise in sports does not constitute an accident. Morbid disorders as a result of psychological reactions (anger, excitement, shock) are also not insured.
  • "Acting on the body from the outside" means that forces are required that act on the body, such as For example, collisions in traffic or injuries from falling objects.
  • "Involuntary" means that the accident was not self-caused. A suicide or self-mutilation therefore falls not under insurance coverage. However, anyone who acted with gross negligence is insured.

Damage to limbs or the spine after high exertion is also considered an accident by the insurers. The prerequisite is that a joint is dislocated or muscles, tendons, ligaments or capsules are pulled or torn. Normal movements of daily life are not enough.

You have to prove to the insurer yourself that you have suffered an accident according to these criteria.

The private accident insurance includes all accidents of daily life - both in your free time and at work. The protection applies worldwide.

Who Needs Accident Insurance?

Private accident insurance is particularly important for the self-employed, people without a job, housewives and housewives, for people with a very high risk of accidents and for employees with previous illnesseswho cannot take out disability insurance.

It is less useful for other groups of people:

  • Workers are already covered for accidents at work and commuting and for occupational diseases. This is compulsory insurance that the employer must take out and pay for you as an employee through the professional association. Private accident insurance does not improve your protection during work.
  • Children and adolescents also have insurance coverage in kindergarten, school and university. The way there and back is also insured.

However, there is no insurance cover for leisure, at home, on the road or on vacation. If you want to be covered here, you can consider taking out private accident insurance.

It is important, however, that many of the risks covered by accident insurance can be covered more comprehensively and cost-effectively with other insurance policies. Therefore, if you are dealing with accident insurance, be sure to look around for other insurances and find out more before you take out an insurance policy.

  • For most people, occupational disability insurance, for example, is much more important than accident insurance. This also occurs if you become unable to work due to an illness, not just an accident.
  • Daily sickness allowance insurance also helps in the event of loss of earnings in the event of illness, not just in the event of an accident.
  • You can better cover your own death and the care of your descendants with term life insurance.

Private accident insurance distinguishes between two risk groups:

  1. In the Risk group A the risks with a low accident risk are recorded. These are people with commercial or administrative work. In most societies women are assigned to this risk group.
  2. In the Risk group B people who perform physical or manual work are grouped together. If you end up in this group, it usually means that you have to pay a higher insurance premium.

Which benefits can be insured?

The most important benefit of the accident insurance is the payment of a one-off sum of money, the Disability benefit. The prerequisite is a "permanent impairment of physical or mental performance". This is the case if the consequences of the accident are likely to persist for more than three years and no improvement is to be expected.

The amount of the compensation depends on the degree of disability that has occurred. The accident insurance pays a percentage of the agreed sum insured. It depends on how the loss of the body part is taken into account in your insurance contract.

A few examples from the most widely used member tax:

  • an arm in the shoulder joint: 70 percent
  • one leg to mid-thigh: 60 percent
  • a hand in the wrist: 55 percent
  • one eye: 50 percent
  • hearing in one ear: 30 percent
  • the sense of smell: 10 percent

For example, if you have a contract with an insured sum of 300,000 euros and you lose an eye in an accident, you will receive 150,000 euros as a disability payment. In the event of partial loss or partial inability to function, the values ​​will be reduced accordingly.

For certain professional groups such as musicians, surgeons or hairdressers there are tariffs with their own member taxes. Individual parts of the body can be insured much better.

Important additional benefits from the accident insurance

Be careful of that cost Search, rescue or rescue missions are insured. Also should the insurer for accident-related cosmetic operations Afford.

Unnecessary benefits in accident insurance

Often, the Risk of death locked in. However, this only applies to accidental death. For example, anyone who needs a provision for the event of death to protect their relatives should think better about taking out term life insurance.

Additional Services can be agreed depending on the tariff. These include, for example, a daily sickness allowance, daily hospital allowance with and without convalescence allowance as well as transitional benefits. This additional protection is either superfluous or better secured through other contracts. For example, you can better insure loss of earnings with private daily sickness allowance insurance. Then you will not only receive benefits after an accident, but also in the event of illness.

It is also possible to get one with the accident insurance Accident pension to agree. However, this variant is less recommended, as pension payments often only start from a degree of disability of 50 percent and are also very expensive. Daily sickness allowance or occupational disability insurance are better suited to compensate for a loss of income due to an accident. In both of these cases, you will receive money even if you are ill.

The agreement of a dynamics is not necessary. The sums insured are then usually increased by an agreed fixed percentage. The premiums increase accordingly. It is better to choose high insurance sums at the beginning of the contract. At a young age, the gaps in coverage are large; you would need as much money as possible from the insurance company after an accident. As you get older, however, you will have higher pension and pension entitlements and therefore need less money from accident insurance.

Be careful with one Accident insurance with premium refund: Here, completely overpriced accident insurance is usually linked to a savings process with poor interest rates. Insurance for risks, on the one hand, and contracts with which you want to save money, on the other, should always be taken out separately.

Special tariffs with higher benefits in the event of serious accidents

If you want to get a particularly high level of insurance, you could of course increase the sum insured accordingly. Instead, many insurers offer models to insure at least a higher level of impairment. But that has both advantages and disadvantages!

  • It is usually cheaper to choose such tariffs instead of significantly increasing the sum insured.
  • In many accidents, however, you will not achieve the necessary disability for higher payments.

As a result, you will then pay higher contributions for the insurance, but it will rarely step in with higher payments.

Most accidents are not so severe that you will actually benefit from such tariffs. If you are toying with the idea of ​​concluding such contracts, you should definitely seek independent advice, for example from your consumer advice center.

What should you watch out for?

At the Application to take out accident insurance you must answer the questions about the state of health completely and truthfully, otherwise the insurance cover is at risk.

Tariff level and contribution are based on the risk to be insured (job, hobbies, etc.). A Change of occupation or hobbies you must therefore inform the insurer immediately.

In the event of an accident, you have to Note deadlines. Otherwise your insurance cover is at risk. The deadlines can vary among insurers. In your own interest, take a look at your insurance conditions.

Which height should the insurance be taken out? A common rule of thumb for determining a sufficient basic disability sum is based on age and income for employed persons:

  • 30 years = six times the gross annual income
  • 40 years = five times the gross annual income
  • 50 years = four times the gross annual income

Find a suitable provider and tariff

The differences in contributions and benefits between accident insurance providers are enormous. A support in your decision-making

This content was created by the joint editorial team in cooperation with our federal association (vzbv) and the Rhineland-Palatinate consumer center for the network of consumer centers in Germany.