Zurich Life Insurance

Zurich Life Insurance Australia offers a wide range of products including Death cover, TPD, Trauma cover, Income Protection and Business Expenses insurance. These products can assist you in choosing the best cover to suit your budget and requirements. In 2019, Zurich acquired Onepath, which means they now service around 20% of the Australian retail life insurance business.

Published March 24, 2020

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Our viewpoint: Is Zurich Insurance the right choice for you?

Zurich is a reputable company with a long history of providing service to their customers. The company was founded in 1872 with the Australian office opening its doors in 1961. As a large company with branches worldwide, they are financially stable and have been known to pay out claims in a fairly reasonable amount of time. They offer a wide range of policies to meet many different requirements and budgets.

Determining whether they are the right choice for you depends on a variety of factors, such as your specific requirements and budget. You may want to compare Zurich with other life insurance brands before making a decision.

About the Zurich Insurance Group

Zurich Financial Services Australia (Zurich Australia Insurance Limited) is one of the longest standing independent players in the Australian life insurance market. Over the years, they have gone from strength to strength acquiring companies including Onepath and Macquarie and expanding their reach in the Australian market.

The insurer is part of the Swiss-based worldwide Zurich Financial Services Group, which operates under the Zurich Global brand. The Zurich Insurance Group has over 50,000 employees worldwide and delivers insurance products to over 200 countries. They are based in Zurich, Switzerland and have offices in North America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America.

Through their promise of intelligent protection, Zurich helps their customers understand and protect themselves against risk. As a customer, you can gain access to Zurich LiveWell, a health and wellness program that rewards you for leading a healthy lifestyle.

Financial strength

Financial ratings are typically a good way to discern the insurance provider’s stability. Good ratings help to show that a company has the financial ability to pay out claims, now and in the future.

According to Standard & Poor’s Financial Strength report (January 2020), Zurich has an A+ rating, meaning the company can generally meet financial commitments, like paying out claims. However, compared to an AA and AAA rating, the insurer is somewhat more susceptible to changes in circumstances and the economy.

Zurich Australia also has a treaty reinsurance agreement with SCOR, which helps to contribute to their financial stability.

Zurich is registered under section 21 of the Life insurance Act 1995. The act is supervised by The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) that regulates how life insurance companies manage their financial risks. This increases the likelihood of policyholders receiving a payout, even if the provider runs into financial difficulty.

Types of products offered

  • Wealth Protection: This is a comprehensive range of Retail life insurance products available through a financial advisor.
  • Ezicover: A range of easy-to-understand insurance options that you can purchase directly from the insurer, without the advice of a broker.
  • Zurich Active: This is a range of life insurance policies that pay out a lump-sum payment if you were to suffer from a specified health event such as sickness or injury or the treatment of these events as defined in the Zurich active cover PDS. It also covers you in the event of your death or diagnosis of a terminal illness.
  • Sumo: This life insurance product is designed for high-income earners or business owners that might require extra cover.

Zurich Wealth Protection policy options

Zurich Wealth Protection is made up of a variety of policies designed to cover a range of scenarios. Products include Death Cover, Total and Permanent Disablement (TPD) cover, Trauma cover and Income Protection insurance.

Death Cover

Death Cover pays a lump sum benefit to your beneficiaries should you die or be diagnosed with a terminal illness. This money may be used to provide financial support to your loved ones, for example, to pay the mortgage, settle outstanding debts and pay for your funeral.

Entry Age: Between 10 and 70 years old
Expiry Age: 99 years old

Minimum Cover: $50,000
Maximum Cover: There is no maximum amount; however, your sum insured depends on your requirements.

Total and Permanent Disablement (TPD) Cover

With TPD cover, a once-off payment is made to you if you were to suffer a total and permanent disability as a result of severe injury or illness that would prevent you from working in your Own, or Any occupation. This payout can be used to help you adapt to your new lifestyle and pay your bills.

Entry Age: 15 years old to 65 years old, depending on your choice of cover, i.e. Own or Any Occupation.
Expiry Age: 99 years old unless it’s linked to Trauma insurance, in which case it becomes 65 years old.

Minimum Cover: $50,000
Maximum Cover: It is generally $5 million for TPD and modified TPD and $2 million for domestic duties TPD.

Trauma Cover

Trauma cover provides a lump sum payment if you suffer from one of the critical illness specified in your product disclosure statement (PDS). The benefit can be used for a variety of things such as to pay for medical expenses or make mortgage repayments.

Entry Age: 15 to 59 years old
Expiry Age: It’s generally 99 years old if linked to Death Cover, and 75 years old if purchased as a stand-alone policy.

Minimum Cover: $50,000
Maximum Cover: It is generally $2 million, but $1 million for the occupation of domestic duties.

Income Protection

Zurich Insurance Income protection cover pays a monthly benefit if you are incapable of working for longer than your waiting period due to injury or sickness,

Entry Age: 19 to 60 years old.
Expiry Age: It is generally 65 years old, but can go up to 70 years old (with age 70 benefit period) depending on your occupation rating.

Minimum Cover: $1,500 per month.
Maximum Cover: $30,000 per month and an additional $30,000 per month restricted to a one or two year benefit period.

Business Expenses

Business expenses cover provides a monthly payment that reimburses the costs of either key person replacement or fixed business expenses if the insured person were to become disabled. In most instances, it’s for longer than the specified waiting period. This means either the costs associated with running a business or the cost of hiring someone to do your job will typically be covered.

Entry Age: Generally, 19 years old to 60 years old.
Expiry Age: 60 years old.

Minimum Cover: $1,000 per month.
Maximum Cover: $60,000 per month.

We make it easy for you to compare policies online with our powerful comparison engine.

Buy with confidence today for peace of mind tomorrow.

Does the company provide value for money insurance?

Whether Zurich provides value for money depends on your specific requirements. They offer a wide range of products to meet many different circumstances and budgets. It may be worthwhile checking out other major life insurance brands and compare quotes to see which one will best meet your requirements.

Zurich Insurance Australia – Pros

  • 24/7 cover: You’re protected 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
  • Cooling off period: You have 21 days from policy commencement to decide if your policy meets your requirements. Within this time, you can cancel the policy and get a full refund, provided you have not claimed.
  • Worldwide cover: The policy covers you no matter where you are in the world.
  • Guaranteed Renewable: As long as you pay your premiums, the insurer is obligated to continue your coverage until you lodge a claim or your policy expires.
  • Optional Benefits: These are a range of optional benefits you can add for an additional fee, that allows you to customise your policy to further meet your requirements. For example, the Life Cover Buy Back option and Double TPD.

Zurich life insurance – Cons

It might be worth checking if there are any exclusions when applying for a life insurance policy from Zurich. An example would be that no payouts will be paid if death were to occur as a result of suicide, within the first 13 months after the commencement of the policy.

The overall customer experience

According to the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA), as of November 2019, Zurich had a claims acceptance rate of 95.5 % for death cover that had been purchased through a financial adviser, and on average it took 1.4 months to decide whether to pay the claim.

A customer satisfaction rating is another great way to grade the customer experience. According to the Roy Morgan Single Source, Zurich was ranked third with an overall score of 71.8 % between July 2018 and July 2019.

You might also want to read customer reviews on independent sites to find out what kind of experiences current clients have had with the company.

General features and benefits offered by Zurich Wealth Protection

  • Terminal illness benefit: The policy will typically pay a lump-sum payment upon diagnosis of a terminal illness.
  • Advancement of funeral expenses: An advance payment of $15,000 can be made towards funeral expenses.
  • Accidental injury benefit: If you were to suffer a specified accidental injury, you might get an advance payment of part, or all of the Death benefit.
  • Future Insurability: This typically allows an increase in cover without reassessing your personal circumstances when major life events occur, such as the birth of a child or marriage.
  • Accommodation Benefit: If you require full-time care or are confined to a bed, the policy may reimburse some of the accommodation and travel expenses for an immediate family member, provided they have travelled over 100 km.
  • Financial Planning Service: The provider will typically reimburse the cost of financial advice up to $3,000 following a claim payment.
  • Interim cover: You’ll generally be covered for accidental injury or accidental death while your policy is being assessed. Interim cover usually lasts for up to 90 days or until your assessment is complete, whichever comes first
  • Inflation protection: Your cover typically increases every year to keep up with inflation.

Note: These are the general benefits for a Retail Zurich Life Insurance policy and excludes cover purchased directly or via superannuation.

How to apply for a Zurich insurance policy

You can apply for a Zurich life insurance policy using our comparison site.

To apply, you generally need to decide what kind of cover you require, including any optional benefits. Once you’ve decided which policy meets your specific requirements, you can fill out an Application form and the Life Insured’s Statement, which asks about your lifestyle, pastimes etc.

Once the application is made, your statement will be assessed by Zurich Insurance. At this point, they may raise some medicals such as an examination, blood tests or reports from your doctor.

Depending on the outcome of the assessment, the insurer typically approves the application or issue revised terms. Revised terms, exclusions or loadings, are generally issued when your profile is deemed a higher risk.

Your policy is then issued, and a policy schedule is provided to provide you with all the details of the policy, including cover commencement date, sums insured, and expiry age. It also includes any exclusions, loadings or special conditions.

How to lodge a Zurich insurance claim

  • You or your beneficiary must contact the insurer as soon as possible. This can be done over the phone, their self-service portal on the website, or via email.
  • Zurich’s claims team will provide you with the claim forms and request any supporting documents that may be required.
  • Complete and send the claim forms and the documentation required.
  • Once the documents have been received, the insurer will start their assessment.
  • They might require a medical examination to confirm a medical diagnosis, after which you will typically have to send them additional information.

Frequently asked questions and answers

  • Who owns Zurich insurance?

    Zurich Insurance Australia is part of the Zurich Financial Services Group.
  • Where is Zurich Insurance headquartered?

    The Zurich Financial Services Group is based in Zurich, Switzerland.
  • What will happen to my OnePath policy, now that Zurich acquired them?

    Current Onepath Life customers will experience no change to their policy benefits or premiums. They will receive the same level of service, now supported by the strength of a global insurance company.
  • How to cancel Zurich life insurance

    You can generally cancel your life insurance policy at any time, provided you inform Zurich in writing. If you’ve paid your premiums in advance or cancelled within the 21 day “cooling off period” you are typically entitled to a refund of those premiums if you have not lodged a claim.
  • What is Zurich LiveWell, and how do you get it?

    Zurich LiveWell is the company’s digital wellness program that encourages a healthy and active lifestyle by providing you with rewards and discounts when taking part in various wellness activities.

    New customers can get access to Zurich LiveWell when purchasing insurance through a broker. Current customers can request access from their broker when making changes to their existing policy, for example, increasing or adding cover.

  • What are some of the key exclusions of Zurich life insurance?

    Zurich life insurance generally won’t pay a claim if death was due to suicide within the first 13 months of your policy commencing. Other exclusions for income protection and TPD might include if injury or sickness was as a result of taking un-prescribed drugs, engaging in criminal activities including acts of war, and self-inflicted injury or any attempt to injure your self. Please read the Zurich Insurance PDS document for the complete lists of exclusions and limitations.
  • Are Zurich life insurance premiums tax-deductible?

    It generally depends on your policy ownership structure. Policies held in your personal name, outside of superannuation, are generally not tax-deductible. However, if the policy is being paid through your super fund, your premiums can generally be tax-deductible to the fund.
  • Can you get Zurich insurance if you have a pre-existing condition?

    When applying for life insurance when you have a pre-existing condition, there are generally many factors that are taken into consideration, such as your specific condition, the date you were diagnosed, the prognosis and your overall health. You might want to request that we do a pre-assessment for you to determine how an insurer might assess your application.

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