The family of a late taxi driver are distraught after the Central Provident Fund (CPF) Board allegedly rejected the taxi driver’s widow’s Home Protection Scheme (HPS) on the basis that her late husband concealed his health condition prior to his passing.
Writing to the Chinese daily, Madam Li Yue shared that her husband, Mr Se Chun Hua, passed away five months ago from a fatal heart attack he suffered while he was ferrying a passenger on a trip in his taxi. Madam Li Yue said that her husband managed to park safely by the roadside, to ensure the safety of his passenger and other road users, even while he suffered from cardiac arrest.
The critically ill Mr Se Chun Hua was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at a local hospital where he received treatment for five days. His wife, however, had to make the difficult decision of removing life support because she feared that she and her husband do not have sufficient savings in their Medisave account to continue paying for medical bills.
Mr Se Chun Hua left behind his devoted wife and two children. His eldest daughter is a freshman at the Singapore University of Social Sciences’ School of Business. The 21-year-old has to fork out $4260 just for her school fees this year.
Scrambling to provide for her family after her husband’s passing, Madam Li Yue managed to borrow $5000 from a good friend but the money only lasted the family five months. This was when a Housing and Development Board (HDB) officer informed Madam Li Yue that she is eligible to make a HPS claim.
According to CPF Board’s website, HPS is “a mortgage-reducing insurance that protects members and their families against losing their HDB flat in the event of death, terminal illness or total permanent disability.”
If granted, the HPS claim would have been a huge source of financial assistance for the widow and her children since she could continue servicing her HDB flat loan.
CPF Board, however, rejected the widow’s claim. Madam Li Yue revealed that she received a letter from the Board allegedly stating their belief that her late husband had concealed his health condition since he did not inform the insurer of his pre-existing diabetes and heart disease conditions.
Mr Se Chun Hua had been paying hefty HPS premiums when he was alive. Last year, the late family man’s HPS premiums went up from $1100 to $1382.16 per annum. Madam Li Yue says that the CPF Board had only returned $269.46 from her husband’s unused HPS premium.
Revealing that her husband signed the HPS agreement five years ago, the widow argued that no one had explained the insurance policies to them and that no one requested her husband’s medical records. Asserting that they would have provided the records if the insurer requested it, Madam Li Yue said:
“The hospital has his records – thus it is obvious that we cannot hide anything [even if we tried]…My husband believe that the HPS is a form of financial protection from the government, and that was why he signed the agreement…Yet he is being accused of dishonesty even after he had passed away.”
Madam Li Yue pointed out that the insurer should only have made her husband pay premiums after requesting his medical records.
Madam Li Yue and her children are now left scrambling for another means to protect their home since CPF Board has rejected her claims application, after years of accepting premiums.
The disheartened widow also revealed that her taxi company that her husband drove for, TransCab, did not provide employee insurance. On top of this the company charged the family a “repair fee” since they were unable to find the cab’s key when the company wanted to take the taxi back:
“Not long after my husband passed away, the company sent a letter to us and informed they are taking back the taxi. However, as we were unable to find the key, they have charged us a “repair fee” with the amount of $25.58.”
Madam Li Yue lamented, “The cold rigidity and ruthlessness of the company in this situation had left me speechless.”