Choice renews push for ‘enforceable rules on claims handling’ – Life Insurance – Insurance News

Choice renews push for ‘enforceable rules on claims handling’

19 September 2022

Consumer advocate Choice is renewing its push for an “enforceable” code of conduct after flagging last week the case of a supermarket worker who was unable to claim for disability insurance benefits despite having paid the premiums for years from her super fund.

The worker’s case had already dragged on for more than six months by the time the worker’s legal representative spoke with Super Consumers Australia, the advocate’s super advocacy unit.

Choice says it’s long been recognized that unreasonably delaying insurance claims can impact the mental health of claimants.

Complaints about insurance in super make up 43% of matters that go to the tribunal, and lawyers working in this space say they’ve received complaints about delays “pretty consistently” over the years, Choice says.

“It’s time we had proper enforceable rules on claims handling to prevent claimants like [this worker] from enduring further distress and financial disadvantage from the process,” Super Consumers Australia Policy Manager Franco Morelli said.

“Super funds and industry lobby groups have tried and failed to develop a code, and then dumped it. We can’t let the industry keep getting away with these stopgap measures and weak self-regulation in this vital area.

“Every Australian should have peace of mind that the disability insurance they’re paying for through their super will be there for them if they ever need it.”

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