Sometimes, the costs for medical and hospital services turn out to be lower overall than the premiums paid. This results in the insurance company accumulating surpluses. We pay these surpluses back to our customers. That’s fair.
Insurance companies have to submit an estimate for the coming year by the middle of the year before so the authorities can approve premiums in good time. To do this, the insurance companies look at things like the previous year’s operating result and the current year’s trends such as tariff changes for medical services or upcoming changes in legislation.
Despite lots of uncertainties, insurance companies are required to set premium rates so that they cover costs. However, this means that, even though they are calculated very carefully, premiums are sometimes set too high and policyholders end up paying too much over the year. Insurance companies use the surpluses this generates in basic insurance to create reserves for the next few years – alternatively, as of 2016, they may now refund them to policyholders.
Due to the fair and transparent way it handles its own reserves, Sympany refunds its customers the surplus money they paid and has been leading by example since 2016.
Sympany calculates it premiums in advance, which is why we think it’s only fair for our policyholders to get back the surplus money that they've paid. It’s a simple idea – surplus refunds from basic insurance are dependent on the operating result in the individual cantons. If the statement of income in a canton shows a surplus, the policyholders in that canton* receive a refund.
* Valid for Vivao Sympany AG
2018 was the third time in a row that Sympany refunded surpluses from basic and supplementary insurance totalling CHF 18.8 million. That amounted to between CHF 50 and CHF 370 per person, depending on the canton.
For example, a family of four received CHF 760 in Basel-Stadt and Basel-Landschaft and, even higher still, CHF 1,480 in Solothurn. In total, six out of ten of all Sympany customers received surplus refunds.
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