Quick reference guide
The Life Insurance Code of Practice (the Code) was launched on 1 July 2017. The Code sets out mandatory standards of service in the Australian life insurance industry for those companies that voluntarily subscribe. There are currently 26 companies who subscribe to the Code.
Guiding principles of the Code
The Code has been developed to:
- Promote high standards of service to customers
- Maintain a benchmark of consistency within the industry
- Establish a framework for professional behaviour and responsibilities
Life Code Compliance Committee (Life CCC)
The Life CCC is the independent body that monitors and enforces the Code. Please let us know if you are concerned that your insurer has breached the Code. You can report suspected breaches here <Link to Contact Us> or by email on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Key sections of the Code that may affect you
Policy document design and disclosure
When you buy a Life Insurance Policy, the insurer will provide you with information about your policy that is clear, informative, and easy to understand. This will ensure you can effectively assess the suitability of the policy for your needs. (Chapter 3)
Advertising and sales practices
The subscribers to the Code are required to be clear and accurate with their advertising. They should include adequate information that is accurate and not misleading. They will follow documented sales rules to ensure staff do not use unacceptable sales practices when dealing with you. (Chapter 4)
Changes and cancellations
Your insurer will provide you with a notice each year before your policy anniversary so you can decide whether the policy is still suitable for you. It will discuss your coverage, premiums, and cancellation risks. They will also let you know how you can contact them to discuss your policy and what to do if you need to make a claim. (Chapter 6)
Making a claim
The Code provides the standard your insurer will meet when handling your claim. They are required to provide you with regular updates, let you know of claim decisions within appropriate time frames, and provide information at specific points during the claim process. (Chapter 8)
Complaints and disputes
If you make a complaint to the insurer, they are required to keep you updated while progressing the complaint. They will also need to advise you of complaint decisions within an appropriate timeframe and provide information at specific points during the complaint process. The insurer will also provide you with contact information for the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) if you are not happy with the progress or outcomes of your complaint or dispute. (Chapter 9)
Access to information
The insurer will abide by the Privacy Act when they collect, use, store, or disclose information about you. If you request this information, it will be provided within timeframes relevant to personal information access requests. (Chapter 14)
Would you like more information about the Code?
The Life Insurance Code of Practice covers these key areas and other scenarios you may face as a holder of a Life Insurance Policy. You can read a full copy of the Code here.