Hong Kong sees fewer insurance complaints in first half

Report lists various enforcement actions taken in recent months

Hong Kong sees fewer insurance complaints in first half

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

Hong Kong’s Insurance Authority (IA) received 533 complaints for the first half of 2022, down from 723 for the same period last year, representing a 26.3% decrease.

The regulator provided a breakdown of the complaints it received from Jan. 1 to June 30 in its periodical Conduct In Focus report.

Similar to last year, conduct complaints were the most frequent, making up 26% of those received by the IA. The regulator defines conduct complaints as those “arising from the process in which insurance is sold.” This category also includes the handling of client’s premiums or monies, cross-border selling, unlicensed selling, allegations of fraud, allegations of forgery of insurance-related documents, and commission rebate disputes.

Business or operation complaints were the second-most frequent with 22%. These complaints are about the various business operations of an insurer or intermediary, such as cancellation or renewal of policy, adjustment of premium, underwriting decision, and matters related to the management of the insurer.

Representation of information complaints made up 20%. These are complaints about the presentation of an insurance product’s features, policy terms and conditions, premium payment terms, returns on investment, dividends or bonuses.

Claims complaints were 15% of the total. While the IA cannot adjudicate insurance claims or order payment of compensation, it can handle complaints related to the process by which claims are handled, such as delays or inefficiencies in the claims handling process.

The IA summarised several of its recent enforcement actions, including a five-month licence ban for a former broker who mishandled the client’s money, reprimanding an agent for distributing inaccurate marketing material via email, and a 40-month ban for a former broker for misusing his client’s Mandatory Provident Scheme information.

The IA also took disciplinary action against 91 individual insurance intermediaries for failing to comply with the CPD requirements during the 2018/19 assessment period.

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