Understanding The Dependant Protection Scheme (DPS) In Singapore 2023

In Singapore, Dependants’ Protection Scheme (DPS) is known as a term life insurance scheme which all Singaporeans and PRs are automatically entitled to, as long as you’re aged from 21 to 65. However, you have the choice to opt out of it if you do not wish to be covered. A DPS policy is often more affordable than other types of insurance like endowment plans or health insurance, and you can even use your CPF savings to pay for the yearly premiums.

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What Is A Dependant Protection Scheme (DPS)?

For Singaporeans and PRs, a maximum coverage sum of $70,000 is provided up till age of 65, and similar to other term life insurance policies, this benefit will be paid out to your family in the event that you pass on, or become permanently disabled.

Letter of notification

Once you start working and make your very first CPF contribution, you’ll automatically become a CPF member and receive a letter of notification from Great Eastern Life, who is currently the sole administrator for DPS. Prior to 2021, DPS was administered by two insurance companies, either Income Insurance (formerly known as NTUC Income) or Great Eastern.

Welcome package

You can expect to receive a welcome package from Great Eastern Life which will be of great help in guiding you on the process to complete your DPS application. If you have enough money in your CPF Savings for the most basic coverage, you’ll definitely be eligible for the DPS policy and be covered for the next twelve months, before you’re prompted for a renewal.

Health declaration form

The health declaration form is one of the documents enclosed in the welcome package, and you’ll have to complete this form and return it to Great Eastern Life within 21 days from the date of receiving your letter of notification. Although all Singaporeans and PRs are automatically enrolled in this DPS, this scheme is not a guaranteed issuance policy, that is why you have to declare your health via the health declaration form sent to you in the welcome package.

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How Does The Dependant Protection Scheme (DPS) Work?

DPS policies can be a beneficial way to help you have a peace of mind with some level of financial protection at affordable premiums, since you can use your CPF Ordinary Account or Special Account savings to pay for the annual insurance premiums. 


To get you started, let’s use an example to illustrate. Assuming that you’re 25 and you’ve just started on your first full time job. You’ll be paying $18 a year up to the age of 35, with premiums rising every 5 years up to $298 a year from the age of 55.

This infographic displays how much premiums to pay annually for dependent protection scheme from age 25 to 65

DPS Annual Premiums

AgeDPS Annual PremiumSum Assured
34 and below$18$70,000
35 to 39$30 $70,000
40 to 44$50$70,000
45 to 49$93$70,000
50 to 54$188$70,000
55 to 59$298$70,000
60 to 64$298$55,000

Coverage

The coverage that a DPS policy provides is pretty reasonable as it covers you for death, terminal illness and total and permanent disability (TPD) with a worldwide coverage period of up to the age of 65. 


As the purpose of a DPS plan is to provide the basic coverage against the above three aspects, there is no cash value and there will be no payout at the end of the coverage period even if you’re still alive and well. 


Payout assured (upon death)

The sum assured for you when you’re between 21 and below 60 years old is $70,000. The sum assured will be reduced to $55,000 when you turn 60 all the way till the day before you turn 65 years old.


If you’re looking for some insurance plan with guaranteed cash value and non-guaranteed bonuses, the DPS does not offer these features, so you can consider other types of policies like endowment plans which enable you to withdraw a certain amount of money per year after your policy acquires cash value, or retirement savings plans that include a non-guaranteed bonus portion on top of the guaranteed cash payout amount. 


Premium payments using CPF savings 

You’ll have the option to pay in cash if you prefer not to have your DPS premiums automatically deducted annually from your CPF Savings. In the situation that your CPF Savings has insufficient funds to pay your annual premium, you can opt to lower your sum assured (the minimum sum assured is $5,000).


Exclusions

The general claim exclusions terms and conditions for the DPS include self-inflicted injury or suicide, criminal offences punishable by death, or a claim arising out of your own intentional criminal act. You will not be able to claim for any of these events if they occur within the first policy year of the cover.


Besides that, if you’re not in good health before the commencement of your DPS cover, or you’ve provided false or misleading information, you’ll not be entitled to any of the DPS benefits.

Pros And Cons Of The Dependant Protection Scheme (DPS)

As compared to other life insurance plans i.e. whole life insurance plans, endowment plans, the DPS does offer you some advantages but also have some disadvantages, which all depends on your needs and lifestyle.

Pros

  • More affordable premiums
  • Flexibility to opt out of the DPS
  • Choice of payments of premiums using CPF Savings or cash
  • Lower premiums when getting insured from a younger age
  • Enhanced DPS or term life insurance coverage options available if needed

Cons

  • No cash value / accumulated cash payout over the years
  • No non-guaranteed bonuses
  • No investment opportunities
  • Limited coverage, not a lifetime coverage

Dependant Protection Scheme (DPS) vs Other Life Insurance

DPSEnhanced DPS planEndowment planWhole life insurance plan
CoverageDeath, terminal illness, total permanent disability from 21 years old to 65 years oldDeath, terminal illness, total permanent disability from 21 years old to 65 years oldLifetime coverage for death, terminal illness, total permanent disabilityLifetime coverage for death, terminal illness, total permanent disability and critical illness
Payout assuredUp to $70,000Up to $500,000Depends on the insurer’s offer of the percentage of capital guaranteed, guaranteed and non-guaranteed bonusesDepends on the insurer’s offer of the percentage of capital guaranteed, guaranteed and non-guaranteed bonuses
Guaranteed cash valueNoneNoneYesYes
Non-guaranteed bonusesNoneNoneYesYes

An infographic showing what the differences are between a dependent protection scheme, endowment plan and whole life insurance in terms of coverage, payout assured and guaranteed cash value

Best Term Insurance Plans 2023

Min. Death and TI Coverage
S$500,000
Min. Total and Permanent Disability Coverage
S$500,000
Max. Renewable Age
74
Monthly Premium
S$28.50
Min. Death and TI Coverage
S$500,000
Min. Critical illness Coverage
S$50,000
Max. Renewable Age
101
Monthly Premium
S$28.47
Min. Death and TI Coverage
S$100,000
Min. Critical illness Coverage
S$100,000
Max. Renewable Age
80
Monthly Premium
S$26.75
Min. Death and TI Coverage
S$75,000
Min. Critical illness Coverage
S$25,000
Max. Renewable Age
85
Monthly Premium
S$26.81
Min. Death and TI Coverage
S$100,000
Min. Critical illness Coverage
S$20,000
Max. Renewable Age
75
Monthly Premium
S$28

How Do I Claim From The Dependant Protection Scheme (DPS)?

Before you make a claim from your DPS, there are certain things to take note of and these include knowing who is involved, when did the incident/illness take place, what to claim for.

Step 1

Inform Great Eastern Life of the incident/illness

Once you’ve informed them via the Great Eastern Life DPS customer service hotline +65 6839 4565 or via email at [email protected], Great Eastern Life will check your eligibility for the specific claim, cross-check against your former health records, and request for any required documents to be submitted.

Step 2

Have the supporting documents ready for submission

The documents you’ll need to submit include:

  • Original medical report, post mortem report and/or toxicology report
  • Total and Permanent Disability claim form (available for download on Great Eastern Life’s website)
  • Doctor’s statement document (available for download on Great Eastern Life’s website)
  • Original receipt for the fee charged for completion of the doctor’s statement
  • All available lab and test results
  • Death claim form (available for download on Great Eastern Life’s website)
  • Certified and original copy of the death certificate
  • Letter from Immigration and Checkpoint Authority (ICA) for death occurring overseas Identity card and proof of relationship with deceased
  • Doctor’s Statement if the death occurred overseas
  • Last Will of deceased (if applicable)
  • Original copy of policy report for accidental death

Step 3

Approval of your claim and settlement

For whichever relevant claim that includes the fee charged for completion of the doctor’s statement, Great Eastern Life will reimburse the fee to your preferred bank account after concluding the claim (with reference to the original receipt you’ve presented to them). If your family member has passed away and you are unsure if he/she’s covered under DPS, you may email [email protected], or check with Great Eastern Life.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Dependants’ Protection Scheme compulsory?

No. Although all Singaporeans and PRs are automatically entitled to the Dependants’ Protection Scheme (DPS), there’s a choice to opt out of it if you do not wish to be covered.

How much do I need to pay for my Dependants’ Protection Scheme (DPS) premium?

It depends on your age. DPS premiums usually range from $18 to $298 per year. If you’re 21 years old, you’ll need to pay $18 a year up to the age of 35. By the time you’re 50, you’ll be paying $188 per year, with premiums rising every 5 years up to $298 a year from the age of 55.

Are there any claim exclusions for the Dependants' Protection Scheme (DPS)?

Yes, the DPS claim exclusions include self-inflicted injury or suicide, criminal offences punishable by death, or a claim arising out of your own intentional criminal act. Any DPS member will not be able to claim for any of these events if they occur within the first policy year of the cover. Besides that, if you’re not in good health before the commencement of your DPS cover, or you’ve provided false or misleading information, you’ll not be entitled to any of the DPS benefits.

Is the DPS better than other term insurance plans?

Yes and no. It really depends on what your financial needs and goals are. Let’s say you’re just looking for a simple coverage for death, terminal illness and total and permanent disability (TPD), the DPS will suffice.

On the other hand, if you’re thinking of getting more comprehensive coverage, the enhanced DPS plan or other types of term insurance plans may be suitable to supplement your existing DPS.

Does DPS offer guaranteed cash values and non-guaranteed bonuses?

No. Unlike endowment plans or whole life insurance plans which offer guaranteed cash values or non-guaranteed bonuses that increase your total sum assured, DPS do not offer any of these cash values or interest returns.

Do DPS premiums increase with age?

Yes. For example, if you’re 21 and you’ve just started on your first full time job with CPF contribution, your premium will be $18 a year up to the age of 35, with premiums rising every 5 years up to $298 a year from the age of 55.

What will happen if I wish to cancel my DPS policy earlier than the end term?

There is no cash value or interest returns payout when you cancel your DPS policy before the end term. You’ll need to download the Opt-Out Form and email the completed form to Great Eastern Life at [email protected] to complete your cancellation.