Specialist insurer PPS Mutual, whose products are offered exclusively through accredited financial advisers, said it has updated definitions and expanded the range of benefits available in its Professionals Choice product range in an effort to better meet the needs of its members.
Key changes, applying to all existing and new policies, include moving from a 12-month to a 24-month terminal illness definition within its life cover, and enhancing a range of trauma definitions including prostate cancer, stroke and coronary artery bypass surgery, the insurer said.
PPS Mutual said it will also now extend business expenses benefit payments within its Professionals Choice range, meaning members will be able to access additional business expenses payments beyond the first 12 months of their initial claim if they have not yet reached their full benefit entitlement.
Business expenses have also been widened to cover both interest and capital on loans, the insurer said.
“The suite of enhancements have been passed back to all our members so that everyone is on the same product series,” PPS Mutual director of proposition, Matthew Pilcher said. “Additionally, as a mutual insurer, our members benefit directly from sharing in the profit of the insurance that they buy.”
Following industry speculation around the deductability of insurance premiums, a product ruling was also issued by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) in 2016 in respect of PPS Mutual’s Professionals Choice product range.
Pursuant to the ruling, PPS Mutual said premiums incurred by a member in relation to its Professionals Choice Income Protection Insurance that do not contain an Extras Package Benefit are 100 per cent income tax deductible in the hands of the member.
Where a member has selected an Extras Package Benefit, the total premiums incurred are 95 per cent income tax deductible in the hands of the member, the insurer said.
PPS Mutual recommended that members obtain their own independent taxation advice as to how the ruling may apply to them.