Capsuleer Accidental Death, Dismemberment and Specific Loss Indemnity
Officially termed Capsuleer Accidental Death, Dismemberment and Specific Loss Indemnity, this type of special risk coverage is generally offered to capsuleers to protect them and their crews in the event of unexpected injury. Capsuleers are generally able to obtain more information and quotations on Capsuleer Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D) insurance solutions through their insurance brokers.
New Eden is a dangerous place, especially for those who live in space. Of all the myriad activities one might engage in, it could be argued capsuleers (and their crews) live the most dangerously. Capsuleers spend the majority of their time traveling the cosmos encased in a capsule surrounded by neuro-embryonic containment fluid and may engage in space-based conflict on a daily basis. Their chance of bodily harm is determined mainly by the ship they fly along with any accompanying associates versus the ship and associates of the adversary. These situations nearly always result in equipment and crew loss as well as a high instance of capsuleer clone death. Insurance programs exist to assist in financial recovery after equipment loss but they do not address the consequences of bodily harm to the capsuleer and his crew.
Even with today's medicine accidents can still result in financial hardship, if not disaster, to any capsuleer or the agent or corporation he works for. Agents and corporations have a legally implicit responsibility attached to the assignments they provide to their pilots. It is therefore imperative to provide accident coverage. Most liability insurers will not provide liability coverage if quality accident coverage is not already in force.
Accidents are serious and expensive. Capsuleers command a great deal of wealth but this wealth can be quickly eroded by the high cost of living in space combined with the recurring cost of equipment and crew turnover. Benefits offered by other insurance programs including Life insurance cannot guarantee a family's economic security when the "breadwinner" is unable to continue securing an income. Capsuleer AD&D insurance is a solution to provide financial relief for such events. It can include coverage for crews (and, in some cases, the immediate family members of the capsuleer and crew). Most benefits are paid in addition to any other group or private insurance.
Due to the high-risk nature of their lifestyle, capsuleers will often be declined for coverage by mainstream insurers, leaving only a handful of "special risk" insurance carriers willing to take them on. These insurers nevertheless face unique challenges when considering capsuleers as a viable market segment for AD&D insurance. Capsuleer wealth makes them an attractive source of revenue, however this same wealth also means insured amounts are much higher than those granted to members of the general population. Anti-selection is also of great concern as the potential for incidence of claims causing catastrophic loss is high. These factors require insurers to arrange facultative reinsurance to protect solvency, the high cost of which is usually loaded into premium rates.
Thankfully, capsuleer death resulting from space-based conflict cannot be claimed as accidental, as there was intent to be placed in harm's way. Additionally, true capsuleer death in space is mitigated by the unique cloning technology integrated with each pod and as such is not actually death as commonly accepted. True death due to transmission failure or clone vat mishap is virtually unheard of and usually covered under insurance provided via the medical facility where the clone is stored, however also often included in Capsuleer AD&D insurance as a free ancillary benefit.
The likelihood of space-based conflict producing a situation where capsuleers in their pod environment sustain bodily injury (but not death due to pod breach) resulting in incapacitation, paralysis, or dismemberment is low. Generally when these events occur they are due to mechanical malfunction or sabotage. The rarity of such situations does not mean the impact to quality of life is any less than for non-capsuleers who may suffer the same sort of injuries from more common events like motor vehicle accidents. Depending on the nature and permanency of injury, capsuleers are just as likely to require new occupational training or may be left incapable of maintaining their independence. The most costly injury to capsuleers is brain or spinal injury whereby they are no longer able to interface with a ship's systems for pilot control, although many brain injuries (such as mind-lock) are often followed later by true death. Where most Life insurance policies would not respond in such situations, Capsuleer AD&D insurance can while also providing benefits to help cover deep-space rescue and recovery, medical costs, and other expenses associated with these accidents.
The real value in Capsuleer AD&D insurance comes when capsuleers exit their pods and leave behind the capsule's unique cloning technology. It also finds use when capsuleers and their medical clones are simultaneously destroyed, resulting in true death.
In stations and any other non-pod environment, capsuleers are vulnerable to the same type of accidents as non-capsuleers. Accidents can happen anywhere: from tripping over a chair leg in the local bar or failure of a lift door causing limb severance to more radical situations like fedo attacks during extreme intoxication or pirate assault on station property.
Special risk insurers do not condone criminal acts. However, most policies do not include exclusions for injuries received during the commission of such activities. Speculation exists as to whether this is due to navy and/or corporate influence, as many capsuleers are regularly employed by the empires and other organizations to take care of tasks better left off the public record. A back-door drug negotiation resulting in the murder of the capsuleer is an example of a criminal situation which could still result in a claim payout for accidental death. Benefits are paid to the beneficiary in case of true death, otherwise to the individual.
Capsuleer AD&D insurance includes payment of a lump sum benefit, or a fraction thereof, for accidental loss of life, loss of or loss of use of arms, legs, hands, feet, eyesight, speech, hearing, fingers or toes according to a "loss schedule". This loss schedule also includes paralysis benefits. A variety of ancillary benefits come standard in most plans, however some require additional premium rate loading.
The most costly—yet most widely sought after—add-on benefit for Capsuleer AD&D insurance is the Psychological Reconditioning Benefit. Capsuleers who endure repeated clone death generally suffer lasting psychological effects such as fracturing of the ingrained sense of the human lifespan and loss of perspective on the frailties of existence and permanency of true death. The benefit provides reimbursement of the costs of confidential counseling, mental rehabilitation, and other personality adjustments provided at least 30% of all clone deaths incurred by the capsuleer prior to the date of claim were due to accidental means.
Some insurers speculate the reason capsuleers buy AD&D insurance stems not from a desire to protect their families and crews but rather out of fear of mental illness and thus a desire to gain access to the Psychological Reconditioning Benefit. Capsuleer mental instability, if left unchecked, can result in total loss of control and thus end the capsuleer's career. However, industry standards prevent insurers from writing this coverage as a stand-alone product.
Popular ancillary benefits include:
Accidental Medical Reimbursement: Reimbursement of certain medical expenses incurred as a result of an accident.
Bereavement Benefit: Payment of expenses incurred by the spouse and dependent children of the deceased capsuleer or crew member for up to six sessions of grief counseling by a professional counselor.
Clone Vat Indemnity: If true death is sustained due to capsule transmission failure or clone vat mishap, the Principal Sum applicable to the capsuleer shall become payable.
Crew Counseling Benefit: Reimbursement of expenses for counseling services provided to the crew member by a recognized professional. The services must be ordered on the advice of the attending physician.
Education Benefit: Payment of reasonable and necessary expenses incurred by the deceased capsuleer or crew member's dependent child who is enrolled in a school for higher learning, or enrolls in a school for higher learning within 12 months of the date of death, but not to exceed four consecutive annual payments.
Family Transportation Benefit: Reimbursement of travel and accommodation expenses incurred by any immediate family member to attend a hospitalized capsuleer or crew member located at a point not less than five light years or five jumps, whichever distance is greater, from the hospitalized individual's normal place of residence.
Funeral Expense Benefit: Payment of reasonable and necessary funeral expenses, provided a body is recovered.
Identification Benefit: Reimbursement of travel and accommodation expenses incurred by any immediate family member required to identify the deceased capsuleer or crew member's body, provided the body is located at a point not less than five light years or five jumps, whichever distance is greater, from the immediate family member's normal place of residence.
Psychological Reconditioning Benefit: Payment of reasonable and necessary expenses for confidential counseling services, mental rehabilitation, and treatment of other capsuleer personality disorders provided by a recognized professional and ordered by the attending physician. This benefit is payable only if 30% of all clone deaths incurred prior to the date of claim were due to accidental means.
Rehabilitation Benefit: Reimbursement of reasonable and necessary expenses incurred within two years of the date of the accident by a capsuleer or crew member to undergo special training in order to be qualified to engage in a new occupation in which he would not have engaged except for such accident.
Repatriation Benefit: Payment of expenses incurred for the transportation of the deceased capsuleer or crew member's remains to the normal place of residence, including preparation of the remains for such transportation.
Spousal Retraining Benefit: Reimbursement of reasonable and necessary expenses incurred within three years by the spouse of the deceased capsuleer or crew member who engages in a formal occupational training program in order to become specifically qualified for active employment in an occupation for which the spouse would not otherwise have sufficient qualifications and would not have engaged in prior to the death of the capsuleer or crew member.