Attention has now turned to general insurers at the Financial Services Royal Commission, with numerous issues highlighted over the last two days.
Allianz has attracted heavy criticism for some of its practices around travel insurance, particularly in relation to inaccurate information on its website, some of which was in place for six years. Further questions were also raised around the insurer’s broader practices around compliance, and car insurance.
IAG and Swann also came under fire for various add-on insurance products for cars and motorcycles. It appears that, on many occasions, such insurance is built-in to financing products for vehicles. The ABC reported that IAG EGM Business Distribution and Group Executive Ben Bessell acknowledged that “the consumer’s focus is usually on the purchase of the vehicle and the add-on insurance is usually ‘sold to rather than bought by’ the consumer.”
However, it appears that action has already been taken by at least some car insurers to correct the various wrongs exposed. In what will likely be welcome news for many consumers, five separate insurers – Allianz, QBE, Suncorp, Swann and Virginia Surety – are also planning to refund a total of $118 million for add-on car cover to customers around Australia.