Going to a conflict zone? Get special risk insurance coverage

Unfortunately, we live in a world that has many regions and countries where war and terrorism are commonplace. Nearly all mainstream travel medical insurance and expat health policies have restrictions on claims that are the result of war, terrorism, riots and civil strife. Some others will exclude coverage in well known high risk countries such as Iraq and Afghanistan. Most people will not travel to such countries for pleasure, though that has been the case in Afghanistan recently where some “adventure tourists” were attacked by the Taliban. In general, people are traveling to high risk countries for the following reasons:

  • To conduct aid work with NGOs
  • As reporters for news organizations and outlets
  • To conduct business, especially in the mining and oil industries. This can also include companies selling services and products to businesses or government entities in these countries
  • As part of a government delegation or embassy assignment
  • Or to see family members

Whatever your reason for traveling to a high risk country, it make sense to obtain adequate insurance coverage that will not exclude war or terrorism if you get caught up in an unfortunate event. It may or may not be available depending on your country of residence as obtaining individual war risk coverage is much more difficult than sourcing a group plan for employees. The kind of coverage we would want for visiting high risk countries are plans that cover passive war and terrorism coverage, which means you are an innocent bystander and not an active participant in terrorism and war.

If you are traveling to a high risk country for under one year, then most people will want an emergency only travel medical insurance plan that can cover passive war risk. If you are an individual who is going to become an expat in a conflict zone or country where terror is commonplace, then it will be wise to see if the individual expat health plan can cover war/terrorism – unfortunately, most if not all individual expat health plans will have a war and terrorism exclusion. Expat Financial through our parent company TFG Global can source excellent group expat benefit plans that can cover expat employees in high risk and even war zones which can cover passive war and terrorism. We can even source group business travel plans that can cover claims that are the result of a war or terrorist act. Please contact us to see if we can find a plan for your company.

Recent terrorist attacks reminds us of importance of terrorism coverage for expats

Unfortunately, the world has been gripped by an increase in the number of high profile terrorist attacks, including Paris, Thailand, Indonesia and the recent terrorist attack by ISIS operative in Brussels, Belgium. The recent advances of the terrorist group ISIS in Iraq, Libya, Syria and other countries has unfortunately increased the level of terrorism and civil strife in the region. Unfortunately, the terrorism ideology is spreading from countries such as Syria and Iraq throughout many parts of the world. Europe is currently in the grip of a major terrorist threat.

Normally, expatriate employers and individual expats will want to obtain a policy which doesn’t exclude terrorism, war or civil strife if they are residing or visiting high risk countries where terrorism and other disturbances are a common place occurrence. However, the recent events in “safe countries” such as France and Belgium, may cause many expatriate HR managers and even individual expatriates to start thinking about obtaining a plan that will not exclude a claim that is the result of being caught up as an innocent bystander should terrorism strike. Most expat health, life and disability plans will exclude passive war and terrorism. Passive war or terrorism means you were not being an active participant in the even and were simply caught up as an innocent bystander. However, TFG Global/Expat Financial is able to source global medical coverage, international life & disability and other coverage that will cover passive war and terrorism – usually on a group basis, but we can sometime source individual plans as well for some travelers and expats.

If your company is sending people abroad, today’s risk environment may necessitate obtaining a plan that will cover today’s terrorist environment where such events can strike almost anywhere. Luckily, our company is extremely experienced in covering employees and travelers to very high risk countries such as Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia. The international group insurance plans that we can source for multinational employers, governments and NGOs often include war risk at little or no extra charge. We are also a Lloyds of London appointed agent which has direct access via our underwriters in London and can source coverage for employees in the most risky and challenging regions. These underwriters can source special risk coverage that can meet almost any risk matrix.

Its the world we live in and terrorism will likely not reduce in the near or medium term. It makes sense for expat employers to obtain coverage that will protect their employees for terrorism risk in high and low risk regions of the world. We can only hope for the best that terrorist events will become less frequent, but plan for the worst.