What is tuition insurance and will it be right for you?

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Tuition insurance helps pay a student out if a sudden withdrawal from college becomes necessary. Some policies cover events related to the COVID-19 disease pandemic.

High school students who want to go to college after they earn their high school diploma will have to also think about what it means to pay for college. Is tuition insurance right for you?

Tuition insurance can pay off when the unexpected happens.

U.S. News & World Report shares the story of Eric Del Sesto’s son, who got sick with a respiratory condition during his second year at the University of the Pacific, and his doctor suggested that he take a break from school.

At that point, it was too late in the semester to get a refund from the California university, but Del Sesto’s family had purchased tuition insurance prior to the semester’s start. They were therefore reimbursed for that semester’s tuition.

For many families, paying for college is naturally one of life’s biggest investments, in addition to buying a house and saving for retirement. In 2019-2020, tuition and fees averaged around $36,801 among ranked private colleges. The average cost of tuition and fees at ranked public colleges was $10,116 in 2019-2020 for in-state students and $22,577 in the same year for out-of-state students.

What does tuition insurance cover?
As the novel coronavirus pandemic continues and the COVID-19 numbers of both positive tests and deaths rises, the upcoming fall semester is filled with uncertainties. Families who are able to, are thinking about considering buying additional financial protection for paid tuition costs.

The specific policy payment that a family has chosen will determine what the tuition insurance overs. Most options cover the cases in which a student withdraws for medical reasons. Some policies offer even more coverage.

A.W.G. Dewar Inc., a tuition insurance provider that works with schools like Georgetown University and Cornell University, COVID-19 related coverage will vary by school.

Tuition insurance, in general, protects students when they withdraw related to medical (including mental health) reasons. Campus closures related to COVID-19 are likely to be treated differently.

For instance, for a student at Cornell to receive a tuition refund, he or she must have to be diagnosed with the medical condition and a doctor would need to certify that the student’s current medical condition requires the student to withdraw from the semester.

What will tuition insurance NOT cover?
Insurance plans will not typically cover the interruption in education resulting from any college’s decision to close a campus due to COVID-19.

Sesto shares that he was incredibly careful to understand the terms of the policy that he had accepted. He knew he was going to need a statement from his son’s doctor. He made sure to encourage his son to see a doctor right away if he got sick.

Many schools have their own refund policy on a sliding scale, which offers a level of reimbursement if a student drops out within the first month or two of the semester. If a student drops out late, he or she might be able to make up the coursework later and get the credit later eventually.

Insurance policies may be useful only in the case of a mid-semester withdrawal. Families must weigh the chances that their child is going to withdraw for a covered medical reason right in the middle of the semester.

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