Generali Philippines Fail

My interest in investing, particularly in UITF (unit investment trust funds) led me to ask a local BDO (Banco de Oro) branch about this specific product. The teller ushered me towards a desk with a representative who I thought was in charged with investment concerns. She turned out to be an insurance agent for Generali Philippines.

While she was explaining the product, it was definitely enticing - an investment package which comes with health coverage. I forgot the 24-hour rule and signed up right away. And since it's an industry standard to collect the first premium after filling out the form, I also paid. I didn't pay the year's entire value yet and just chose a monthly option. I'm glad I opted for that. 

After a month, my application was still pending. The supposed policy number was nowhere to be found when I called their hotline about it. It was also a pain to call the Generali phone number. You are being tossed around from one department to another. They eventually just referred me to the agent who processed my application.

Since the rep was based in the province, our communication was limited to texts and email. I don't feel like calling because I'm pissed and I may say something rude on a call. She urged me to pay for the second month's premium even if my policy was still pending approval. She assured me that it was already in the main office and was awaiting verification and that this was a common scenario. Based on research (which I unfortunately didn't do before signing up), I found out that there were even other applicants who waited longer and ended up discontinuing. 

Another month after, there was still no definite word about whether or not my policy was already approved or active. I didn't pay for the supposed third month's premium anymore and requested to cancel the application instead. The cancellation was faster than the waiting time for the policy's activation. I received my refund in a check about two weeks after. I met up with the agent instead of waiting for the check to be mailed. 

After a more thorough research, I've read numerous complaints about Generali Philippines and found alternative companies instead which offer a similar product. It looks like BDO is pushing this new product, the same applies with BPI. Someone was also asking about UITF in BPI and was encouraged to try a similar product through BPI-Philam Life. I should have stuck with my guns instead (like that guy) and declined the offer. He did and was able to sign up for what he originally wanted. 

Based on suggestions from Pinoy personal finance blogs, you are better off investing your money in more stable companies like Sunlife if you are considering VUL (Variable Life Insurance).

Here's a quick read timeline of my dilemma with Generali: 

November 2015 - application sent at the end of month; paid the first premium
December 2015 - paid the second premium but policy number was still not active
January 2016 - requested for a cancellation of the application
February 2016 - refund check received
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