Thinking of getting life insurance? If you compare the policies of the major insurance companies here in the Philippines, you’ll discover that they’re more or less the same, offering similar benefits and riders. So the deciding factor then is: customer service.
We all know how life insurance agents (or financial advisors as they now call themselves) can be so attentive to the point of obsequiousness when they’re trying to make a sale, but what about afterwards?
This is not a review of the insurance products of Sun Life Financial Philippines per se — like I said, you’ll most likely find comparable offerings from its main competitors such as Philam Life or Manulife. Instead, this is about our experience with their after-sales service, especially the all-important claims time, which is the true test of an insurance company.
Twenty years ago, my mother bought a simple endowment life insurance policy from Sun Life of Canada (Philippines), the life insurance arm of Sun Life Financial Philippines. With this particular plan, the beneficiary (me) will receive a guaranteed payout, called an endowment, plus non-guaranteed returns in the form of dividends, upon maturity of the policy or death of the policyholder (my mother). (Sun Life no longer offers this plan; among their current products, the closest to it is Sun Acceler8.)
I don’t know if the other local insurance companies offer this, but one thing I appreciate about Sun Life is that they have a convenient online portal, My Sun Life, where one can easily check policy details. Through My Sun Life, we were able to keep tabs on the dividend values, so we knew exactly how much the policy was worth.
The policy matured last month, and we’re happy to report that we received the benefits from Sun Life with no problems at all. My mother called their toll-free number at 1-800-10-SUNLIFE (7865433) the day after maturity for confirmation, and the rep said they will issue the benefit check within several business days and send it to the address on file via courier.
True enough, the check arrived after 14 business days. My mother and I were pleasantly surprised and impressed at Sun Life’s easy claims process, as we were expecting to have to haul ass to one of their branch offices to fill out a bunch of forms and submit a ton of identity documents in order to personally claim the payout. (In comparison, my mother had to go through exactly this laborious process a few years ago with another insurance company, PhilPlans, for her pension plan with them.)
It was indeed hassle-free dealing with Sun Life. Basically, the only action on our part was to call their call center at no cost. One of the reasons my mother chose Sun Life was because of their longevity — apparently they pioneered life insurance in the country and have been around here since 1895 (!). I can see now why they’re still standing strong when other insurance companies have gone belly-up. Our experience with Sun Life has been positive, and as such I don’t hesitate to recommend them for your life insurance needs.