Life Insurance 

EU protection advice overhaul causing problems

EU protection advice overhaul causing problems

Four out of 10 advisers and mortgage brokers selling protection insurance feel they aren't ready for the Insurance Distribution Directive deadline today (1 October), a survey has shown.

In data released by UnderwriteMe, 60 per cent of advisers felt ready for the regulation changes and more than 80 per cent are already collecting health information from clients as part of the recommendation process.

The Insurance Distribution Directive is European Union legislation that replaces the Insurance Mediation Directive and is designed to regulate the way insurance products are sold, including across borders.

The directive sets out the information consumers should receive before they sign an insurance contract and also imposes conduct of business and transparency rules on distributors.

Late last year, the directive's original application date was pushed back from February to October 2018, meaning regulated firms had an additional eight months to apply the new rules.

UnderwriteMe’s survey of 101 advisers found just under half admitted to contacting one or two insurer underwriting teams to assess the effect of client’s collated information on price and product suitability.

Phil Jeynes, head of sales and marketing at UnderwriteMe, said while it is reassuring to see the majority of surveyed advisers and brokers were fully prepared for the changes, a significant number were yet to engage with what it will mean for their business.  

He said: "Modern technology is designed to support advisers - ringing round a small group of underwriters to gauge the effect of a health disclosure on pricing is outdated and, in the post Insurance Distribution Directive world, may be insufficient.  

"Customers expect intermediaries to give information relevant to their circumstances and health is a key factor - UnderwriteMe’s protection platform provides a single process to obtain factual information to help intermediaries and customers make informed decisions."

rachel.addison@ft.com

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