Life Insurance Update – September 2019

19 September 2019

Welcome to our Newsletter, bringing you the latest in Life Insurance Law news.

Extending unfair contract terms to insurance contracts

In response to the recommendation in the Financial Services Royal Commission Report, the unfair contract terms regime is being introduced to insurance contracts.

Once the legislation is passed, the regime will apply to new or renewed standard form consumer and small business life insurance contracts, following an 18 month transition period.

In light of the impending changes, life insurers should start reviewing their standard retail policies for terms which may be deemed unfair under the regime.

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If it’s not on Facebook, did it even happen? Notices to Produce and the Legitimate Forensic Purpose Test

A life insurer has successfully defended a notice to produce issued to a TPD claimant requiring the production of her private Facebook records.

The court accepted that the notice to produce had a legitimate forensic purpose as the life insurer had obtained an external investigation report which supported the conclusion that the private Facebook records would materially assist the insurer’s case.

However it should not be automatically assumed that a request for production of social media records will satisfy the legitimate forensic purpose test.

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AFCA approved to name life insurers in published determinations

ASIC has approved changes to AFCA’s Rules to enable AFCA to name financial firms, including life insurers, in published determinations.

A start date for the naming of life insurers is not yet known.

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