Australia: Royal Commission's report signals a makeover for insurance industry
Source: Asia Insurance Review | Mar 2019
Conclusions drawn by the Royal Commission into misconduct in the banking, superannuation and financial services industry are an opportunity for the sector, including insurers, to start afresh, improve business practices and cultures, and put customers at the forefront of financial institutions’ thinking, according to Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) CEO Rob Whelan.
In a response to the final report of the Royal Commission that was released on 4 February, the ICA acknowledged the findings and recommendations of the commission. It welcomed the federal government’s rapid response and treasurer Josh Frydenberg’s pledge that action would be taken on all 76 recommendations. The ICA said that the conclusion of the commission should improve confidence in the financial services sector.
Mr Whelan said, “Since the announcement of the financial services Royal Commission in November 2017, Australians have had every right to be disturbed and angered by reports of misconduct, and by case studies that have revealed the deep personal impact felt by consumers who have been poorly treated.
“The Insurance Council of Australia and its members pledge to do better and to continue to be held accountable. Repairing public confidence in general insurance is essential if we are to continue to provide effective and efficient risk-based products to households, businesses, governments and the broader community.
“The ICA notes commissioner Kenneth Hayne has not identified any systemic issues relating to general insurance. He has avoided a one-size-fits-all approach and has sensibly provided recommendations designed to address issues specific to each industry sector.
Several recommendations, including those relating to add-on insurance and unfair contract terms, are already being addressed by the industry and ASIC, the ICA added. A