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DPS: A Comprehensive Guide on the Dependants’ Protection Scheme

Dependants' Protection Scheme (DPS) - Financial protection for your family. Learn more about the benefits and eligibility criteria. Opt out or apply now!

Last Updated on by Tree of Wealth

The Dependants’ Protection Scheme (DPS) is relatively less familiar to Singaporeans compared to well-known schemes like MediShield Life or CPF LIFE. However, it may come as a surprise that you are actually automatically covered under DPS when you make your initial CPF contribution as a working individual.

So, congratulations, you are already covered!

Now, you might be wondering what this coverage entails and what benefits it offers. Stay with us as we delve into the details and answer these questions for you.

Learn more about CPF here: CPF CORNER

Understanding the Dependants’ Protection Scheme (DPS): An Overview

The Dependants’ Protection Scheme (DPS), exclusively provided by Great Eastern Life, is an elective term-life insurance program available to eligible CPF members aged 21 to 65. Its primary purpose is to offer financial protection to you and your family in the unfortunate event of your untimely death, terminal illness, or total permanent disability (TPD), which could result in a sudden loss of household income.

It’s important to note that while the CPF Board automatically enrolls you upon your initial valid working CPF contribution, the DPS differs from compulsory schemes like CPF LIFE or MediShield Life. It is entirely optional, providing you with the flexibility to opt out at any time should you choose to do so.

If you are not automatically enrolled in the DPS or if you are a Singaporean or Permanent Resident (PR), you have the option to apply directly for DPS coverage. Additionally, individuals who are 16 years old and above, but below the age of 21, are also eligible to apply for DPS coverage.

You may be interested: Discover how Critical Illness Coverage complements your CPF DPS: Best Critical Illness Insurance Singapore

Prior to April 1, 2021, DPS coverage was also provided by NTUC Income, hence if you were previously covered under DPS before April 1, 2021, there’s a possibility that your policy was initially handled by NTUC Income. However, as of the time of writing (August 17, 2022), your policy would have been transferred to Great Eastern.

The good news is, if you’re an existing DPS member who was insured prior to April 1, 2021, you won’t be required to submit a new health declaration form for any illnesses that emerged after the commencement of your previous DPS coverage. Usually, when there is a change of insurer involved, such a requirement is typical for most insurance policies. Rest assured that Great Eastern Life will continue to cover any health conditions that developed on or after the commencement of your DPS coverage under NTUC Income.

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The Dependants’ Protection Scheme (DPS) offers several benefits to its members, including:

  1. Term-life insurance coverage: DPS provides coverage of up to $70,000 as a lump sum payment to eligible beneficiaries in the event of the insured member’s death, terminal illness, or total permanent disability.
  2. Special pricing offers and member benefits: DPS members have access to exclusive pricing offers and a range of additional benefits provided by the scheme.
  3. Affordable premiums: DPS offers affordable premiums that can be conveniently paid using funds from your CPF Ordinary Account (OA) and/or Special Account (SA), making it easier to maintain coverage.

To be eligible for these benefits, it is essential to complete a health declaration form for DPS. This form requires you to disclose and provide full details about your health history, which includes, but is not limited to:

  • Past and current illnesses you have experienced.
  • Any previous surgeries, treatments, or medical tests you have undergone or are scheduled to undergo.
  • Any physical or mental impairments you may have.

It is crucial to provide accurate and complete information in your health declaration form. Withholding or misrepresenting any information could have consequences, such as potentially affecting your ability to make future claims and even invalidating the validity of your DPS coverage.

It is important to note that these premium rates are subject to change and are accurate as of the time of writing. The premiums for DPS can be conveniently paid using funds from your CPF Ordinary Account (OA) and/or Special Account (SA).

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The coverage provided by DPS includes a term-life insurance benefit of up to $70,000. This coverage ensures that in the event of your death, terminal illness, or total permanent disability, a lump sum payment will be made to the eligible beneficiaries.

Remember to review the latest premium rates and coverage details before making any decisions, as they are subject to updates and revisions by the relevant authorities.

The premiums for DPS can be paid using funds from your CPF Ordinary Account (OA) and/or Special Account (SA). If there are insufficient funds in your OA, the premium amount will be deducted from your SA.

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In the event that your CPF account does not have enough funds to cover the maximum sum assured ($55,000 or $70,000, depending on your age), you have two options:

  1. Insure for a lower amount: You can choose to be insured for a lower sum assured of $5,000.
  2. Top up the difference: Alternatively, you can make a cash, cheque, or GIRO (General Interbank Recurring Order) payment to cover the remaining amount within 60 days from your policy renewal date.

It is important to note that if no premium is paid within 60 days from the renewal date, your DPS policy will lapse, and you will no longer have coverage under the scheme. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure timely payment to maintain the validity of your DPS policy and continuous coverage.

Your CPF does much more than DPS! Read more: CPF Healthcare

Who can be your dependents?

When it comes to nominating dependents for the Dependants’ Protection Scheme (DPS), it’s not limited to just your family members or next-of-kin. You have the flexibility to choose any individual you wish to receive the DPS claim benefits in the event of a death, terminal illness, or total permanent disability (TPD) claim.

However, it’s important to consider certain criteria for your nominees. They must be of sound mind and possess the mental capacity to make decisions. Being of sound mind refers to the ability to make independent and rational decisions, without suffering from any permanent mental disorders that distort one’s perception of reality.

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In cases where your nominated beneficiaries are not of sound mind, the claim benefits will be paid to a deputy appointed by the Order of Court or a donee named in a valid Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA). A Lasting Power of Attorney is a legal document that allows an individual, aged 21 or older and mentally capable, to voluntarily appoint one or more persons called donees to make decisions and act on their behalf if they lack mental capacity in the future.

It’s essential to carefully consider your nominees and ensure they meet the criteria mentioned above to ensure a smooth process in the event of a DPS claim.

How to make DPS nominations

To make a nomination under the Dependants’ Protection Scheme (DPS), you must be at least 18 years old. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to proceed:

  1. Download the DPS nomination form: Visit Great Eastern’s website and download the DPS nomination form. Ensure you have access to a printer to obtain a hardcopy of the form.
  2. Complete the nomination form: Fill in all the required details on the nomination form. This includes your policy number (available via the GE app) and the information of your nominees, such as their names, NRIC numbers, addresses, telephone numbers, and dates of birth.
  3. Have two witnesses: You will need to have two witnesses present with you when signing the nomination form. The witnesses must be over the age of 21 and cannot be a nominee or the spouse of a nominee.
  4. Ensure accurate percentage allocation: Similar to making a CPF nomination, when nominating beneficiaries for DPS, you must specify the percentage of benefits allocated to each nominee. The percentages should be stated up to two decimal places and should add up to a total of 100%. This allocation applies to death claims.
  5. Submit the nomination form: Once you have completed the nomination form and obtained the required signatures from your witnesses, mail the hardcopy of the form to the physical office of Great Eastern.

It’s important to note that the process of making DPS nominations is similar to making CPF nominations. By following these steps, you can ensure that your nominations are properly recorded and that the benefits will be distributed according to your wishes in the event of a claim.

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How to make a DPS claim:

Step 1: Understand the claim criteria The purpose of the Dependants’ Protection Scheme (DPS) is to provide financial protection in the event of the insured member’s untimely death, terminal illness, or total permanent disability (TPD). To ensure a valid claim, it’s important to understand the criteria for terminal illness and TPD:

  • Terminal Illness: Certified by a registered medical practitioner under the Medical Registration Act as an illness expected to result in death within 12 months.
  • TPD (Total Permanent Disability): Inability to permanently engage in any employment or total permanent loss of physical function in both eyes, both limbs, or one eye and one limb.

It’s worth noting that a claim can only be made if the terminal illness or TPD occurred on or after 1 May 2016. You may also be required to undergo a medical examination by an appointed Medical Practitioner.

Step 2: Understand the claim exclusions Certain events and circumstances are excluded from DPS coverage. These exclusions include:

  • Self-inflicted injury or suicide within the first policy year
  • Committing a criminal offense punishable by death
  • Claims arising from intentional criminal acts
  • Pre-existing serious illness, terminal illness, or TPD before the policy commences
  • Providing false or misleading information
  • Claims arising from wars, warlike operations, or participation in riots

Step 3: Prepare the necessary documents Making a DPS claim involves different documents and payment methods depending on the category of the claim: death or terminal illness/TPD. Here are the required documents for each:

Death Claim:

  • Death Claim form (available on Great Eastern Life’s website)
  • Certified true copy of the death certificate
  • Letter from the Immigration and Checkpoint Authority (ICA) if the death occurred overseas
  • Claimant’s identity card and proof of relationship with the deceased
  • Doctor’s Statement if the death occurred overseas (completed by the last attending doctor)
  • Last Will of the deceased (if applicable)
  • Newspaper cutting and/or policy for accidental death
  • Medical report, post-mortem report, and/or toxicology report
  • Any other required documents

Terminal Illness/TPD Claim:

  • TPD claim form (available on Great Eastern Life’s website)
  • Doctor’s Statement (completed by your medical practitioner)
  • Receipt for the fee charged for completing the Doctor’s Statement (to be reimbursed after claim approval)
  • All available lab and test results
  • Any other required documents

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Step 4: Claim methods Claims can be made directly by submitting an application to Great Eastern Life. Use the provided claim forms for death claims and TPD claims. Alternatively, claim applications will be sent to the nominees or next-of-kin (if there are no assigned nominees) upon the insured member’s death under DPS. Great Eastern Life will be notified by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) once they are informed of the member’s death.

By following these steps and providing the necessary documentation, you can initiate the DPS claim process smoothly.

DPS concludes under the following circumstances:

  1. Age 65: When you reach the age of 65, your DPS policy will cease.
  2. Successful TPD/Terminal Illness Claim: If a successful claim is made for total permanent disability (TPD) or terminal illness, the DPS coverage will end.
  3. Death: Upon the death of the insured member, the DPS coverage will terminate.
  4. Loss of Singapore Citizenship or PR Status: If you lose your Singapore Citizenship or Permanent Resident (PR) status, the DPS coverage will end.
  5. Non-Payment of Premium: If you fail to pay the DPS premium for the minimum sum assured within the 60-day period from your policy renewal date, the coverage will be terminated.
  6. Opting Out: If you choose to opt-out of DPS, the coverage will be terminated accordingly.

These are the scenarios in which the Dependants’ Protection Scheme (DPS) comes to an end.

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The decision of whether to opt out of DPS is ultimately up to you, but here are some factors to consider:

  1. Coverage: DPS provides coverage of up to $70,000, which may not be sufficient if your monthly income is higher than $583. Assess whether this coverage aligns with your financial needs and the level of support your dependents would require.
  2. Existing Life Coverage: Evaluate whether you already have other life insurance policies that offer an adequate death benefit. If the combined coverage from your existing policies is equivalent to 10 years of your annual income, you may consider opting out of DPS.
  3. Affordability: Take into account the affordability of the DPS premiums based on your age group. The premiums start as low as $18 per year and gradually increase with age. Consider whether the cost fits within your budget and if the benefits outweigh the expense.
  4. Value for Money: DPS offers a cost-effective option for life insurance coverage. The premiums can be paid using your CPF funds, which are not easily accessible for other purposes. Assess the value and benefits you receive from DPS in comparison to other available insurance options.

Ultimately, weigh the coverage, affordability, and value provided by DPS against your personal circumstances and financial goals to make an informed decision on whether to opt out of the scheme.

Learn more: CPF Tips & Guides

To opt out of DPS, you can follow these steps:

  1. Contact Great Eastern: You can call Great Eastern directly and speak to a customer service officer to inform them of your decision to opt out of DPS. They will guide you through the process and provide any necessary forms or instructions.
  2. Welcome Letter and Application Form: If you received a physical welcome letter from Great Eastern indicating your successful enrollment into DPS, it will typically be accompanied by an application form to opt out. Fill out the form as instructed and follow any specific submission instructions provided.

Here’s how the opt-out process differs for auto-joiners and applicants:

  • Auto Joiners: If you opt out within 2 months of the policy commencement date, you will receive a full refund of the premiums paid.
  • Applicants: If you applied for DPS directly and decide to terminate the policy within a 14-day period from the policy commencement date, you will receive a full refund. If you terminate the policy after the 14-day period, a pro-rated premium based on the remaining days of your coverage will be returned to you.

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Premium Refund Process:

  • Cash, Cheque, or GIRO Payments: If you paid your premiums via cash, cheque, or GIRO, your refund will be issued to you by cheque.
  • CPF Deductions: If your premiums were deducted from your CPF account, the premium refund will be credited back to your CPF account.

Important Considerations:

  • Health Declaration: If you wish to rejoin DPS with Great Eastern in the future, you will be required to submit a health declaration, which will be subject to health underwriting.
  • Loss of Benefits: Upon opting out of DPS, you will no longer be entitled to the benefits provided by DPS.

Make sure to carefully review the opt-out process and any specific terms or conditions provided by Great Eastern to ensure a smooth transition out of the DPS.

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Consider Alternatives: Exploring Options Beyond DPS for Comprehensive Life Insurance Coverage

If you have opted out of DPS or are looking for alternatives, one main alternative is to consider a term life insurance plan. Term life insurance plans provide similar coverage for death, terminal illness, and total permanent disability, but they may have higher premiums compared to DPS.

It is recommended to research and compare different term insurance plans offered by insurers in Singapore to find one that best suits your needs.

You can refer to resources such as our articles or consult with a reputable financial advisor who can provide personalized recommendations based on your specific circumstances.

While DPS offers affordable coverage, the maximum coverage amount of $70,000 may not be sufficient for many individuals. To fill the protection gap and ensure adequate coverage, it is advisable to consider additional term insurance plans or other types of life insurance policies.

If you know someone who wants to learn more about DPS, you can share this article or information with them to help them understand the benefits and considerations of the scheme.

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