To support our members during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, we've made some temporary changes to our suspension and financial hardship policies. Continue reading for the eligibility criteria and how to apply for a suspension.
Suspending your policy is like putting it on hold - you won't pay any premiums. Usually if you suspend your policy, you won't be able to claim for services on your policy during this time.
However, with the special COVID-19 financial hardship suspension, you will retain access to some services. Continue reading for the eligibility criteria and how to apply.
We can suspend your health cover for one of two reasons:
you’re experiencing financial hardship
you’re travelling overseas
COVID-19 financial hardship suspension
In recognition of the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, we introduced a special COVID-19 financial hardship suspension for eligible members.
We extended our maximum financial hardship suspension until 1 October 2020 to help eligible members impacted by COVID-19. All members with Hospital cover who suspend during this time will still be able to access cover for COVID-19 related treatment - just contact us for more information.
Am I eligible for COVID-19 financial hardship suspension?
To apply for the special COVID-19 financial hardship suspension, eligible members must:
have been directly affected by COVID-19 through illness, unemployment or reduced work hours.
be receiving, or have registered an intent to claim, Australian Government financial assistance through JobKeeper and JobSeeker and provide supporting documentation.
have been an active member for 3 months if they joined after 27 March 2020.
apply for assistance before 30 September 2020.
COVID-19 financial hardship premium waivers
Unlike financial suspension, where your cover is temporarily put on hold, a premium waiver means that you won’t have to pay any premiums during the period of the waiver but you'll still have full access to your cover.
We have a number of options available to our members to lessen the burden of COVID-19 financial hardship:
If you’re eligible for government assistance through JobKeeper and JobSeeker due to the pandemic, you can apply for a 60-day premium waiver or a financial hardship suspension for up to 6 months.
If you’ve been financially impacted by COVID-19 but are ineligible to receive support from the government through JobKeeper and JobSeeker, you can apply for a 30-day premium waiver or a financial hardship suspension for up to 3 months.
Contact us to discuss your situation and how we may be able to help.
How do I apply?
Simply call us on 13 16 42 and we can help determine which option is best for your situation.
Overseas travel suspension
You can put your policy on hold for a period of two to 24 months if you're travelling overseas.
We’ll need proof of your travel dates, including your full name and the dates you leave and re-enter Australia.
Your policy will not resume automatically when you return - you’ll need to get in touch with us within 30 days of getting home to reactivate your policy.
For overseas workers, we can suspend your health cover if you're travelling outside of Australia for more than four weeks and less than 24 months, and you've served at least one month of membership with nib. Apply for suspension before you leave by sending proof of your travel dates to [email protected]. To resume your cover, simply contact us.
For overseas students, we can suspend your health cover if you're travelling outside of Australia for a minimum of three months and a maximum of two years. You can only apply for suspension after you return to Australia in the form of a refund - just call us on 13 16 42. Your policy will be resumed from the date you returned to Australia, with any arrears requiring payment.
Important information about suspending your policy
Please note: This applies to all suspensions including COVID-19, but excludes premium waivers.
If you haven't finished serving your waiting periods when you suspend your policy, you’ll need to continue serving them once your policy resumes.
If you're an Australian resident and you earn above the Government’s Medicare Levy Surcharge thresholds you could be liable for the Medicare Levy Surcharge for the period of suspension. This is an extra 1% to 1.5% in tax, depending on your circumstances.
If your policy is not resumed within 30 days of the end of the suspension period it could be cancelled. If this happens and you rejoin your cover later, all members on the policy would need to re-serve waiting periods. So make sure you contact us if you need to resume your cover.