Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

28 April 2022 - Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Hon David Clark, March 2022 diary released with the following potential financial services sector related meetings noted:

  • 16 March 2022 – Financial Markets Authority (Mark Todd, Chair, Samantha Barrass, CE)
  • 16 March 2022 – Fincap  (Ruth Smithers, CE and Jake Lilley, Senior Policy Adviser)
  • 18 March 2022 – NZ Bankers Association Council (Hon Grant Robertson, NZBA members)
  • 30 March 2022 – Speech at Open Finance Report Launch (Video conference attendees)
  • 30 March 2022 – Retirement Commissioner (Jane Wrightson)

https://www.beehive.govt.nz/minister/hon-dr-david-clark


When Consumer becomes anti-consumer

Sonnie Bailey at Fairhaven Wealth has written the article that needed to be written on Consumer's coverage of life insurance. When I read this article I particularly resonated with this line:

"I’m consistently disappointed with Consumer when it talks about insurance."

I believe a lot of financial advisers would agree, along with many in the insurance industry, and many clients that have had good claims paid or felt the limitations of insurance products bought on, say, price alone. Some advisers would put it less politely. My concerns have been such that I wonder about the value of their other research - what technicalities about which I am unaware, are being missed? The article is significant, an 18 minute read, but excellent on every point. Every time Consumer writes about insurance I think I shall write a detailed review of their stance. Now, I don't need to, as Bailey has written it for us. Do read it.

 

 


Database V14.6 now Live!

Our updated database is now live on Quotemonster and reflects the following changes:

Changes to Research include:

  • New policy documents and minor rating changes for Accuro and Unimed
  • Asteron Life's new range of enhancements (for more details click here)
  • Cignas’ new range of enhancements (for more details click here)
  • Income and Mortgage Protection product weightings have been updated (for more details click here
  • Definition reviews for:
    • Aplastic Anaemia - Trauma
    • Critical Cancer & Booster (AMP only) – reflecting the difference between the base and plus range
    • Peripheral neuropathy- Trauma
    • Diagnostic tests – Medical
    • Imaging – Medical
    • Product flexibility – Medical
    • Support & Allowance – Medical
    • Inflation Adjustment (Partners Life Income and Expenses only)
    • Offsets – Income protection
    • Partial Disability – Income and Mortgage Protection

Changes to Quotemonster include:

  • The option to add a 50% benefit loading to health cover – initiated by your feedback
  • Family Protection Research now available for AIA, Cigna, Fidelity Life and Partners Life
  • Spring cleaning for our Research ratings:
  • Optional items that are not included in the score are shown as 0*

0

  •   If an insurer does not have an item (but others do) this will be shown as a dash (-) for their score

Dash

  • A legend has been added to our Heat Map report once generated

Leg

  • Rate changes for the following companies:
    • nib (effective 1 October 2021)
    • Unimed (effective 1 August 2021)
    • AIA Private Health (effective 1 November 2021)
    • Southern Cross (effective 1 November 2021)

Please email us on info@quotemonster.co.nz if you have any questions or feedback.

Happy Crunching!


Does Quotemonster compare banks and other non-adviser companies?

The short answer is…yes, we do!

Recently the number of active users on Quotemonster has skyrocketed and we'd like to share a helpful hint for those interested in adding non-adviser products to your comparisons.

Here's a quick guide:

Once you've selected the necessary benefits click “Next”

Next

Now, click the “Research” tab and “Select Banks”, then “Save” which will automatically include the banks in your research comparison.

Hi

If you'd like to discuss this further or learn about how our platform works, we welcome you to join our training sessions: 

Quotemonster Basic (for newbies)  

  • Tuesday, 12 October 2021 11:00 am-12:00 pm
  • Thursday, 21 October 2021 11:00 am-12:00 pm

Quotemonster Deep Dive (for advanced users) 

  • Thursday, 7 October 2021 11:00 am-12:00 pm
  • Thursday, 28 October 2021 11:00 am-12:00 pm

Advicemonster (Statement of Advice service) 

  • Tuesday, 5 October 2021 11:00 am-12:00 pm
  • Thursday, 14 October 2021 11:00 am-12:00 pm

If there are any topics you’d like us to blog about please feel free to email us on info@quotemonster.co.nz  


Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

16 Sept 2021 – ASIC in Australia released additional information for advice licensees and financial advisers who are authorised representatives to help them prepare for the commencement of the design and distribution obligations on 5 October 2021. https://asic.gov.au/about-asic/news-centre/news-items/what-the-financial-advice-industry-needs-to-know-about-the-design-and-distribution-obligations/

17 Sept 2021 - Parliament's Finance and Expenditure Committee released submissions made to the inquiry into the current and future nature, impact, and risks of cryptocurrencies. https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/sc/submissions-and-advice/all?custom=INQ_111968


Legal and regulatory review for the life and health insurance sector

22 Apr 2021 – ASIC released its set of expectations of life and general insurers following a review of insurers’ responses to consumers experiencing financial hardship during the COVID-19 pandemic. This and vulnerable client issues are likely to be covered by the FMA over the course of the year so these expectations are well worth reviewing. https://asic.gov.au/about-asic/news-centre/news-items/asic-sets-expectations-of-life-and-general-insurers-following-a-review-of-insurers-responses-to-consumers-experiencing-financial-hardship-during-the-covid-19-pandemic/

22 Apr 2021 – Department of Internal Affairs released its AML/CFT Regulatory Findings Report 2020 together with its targeted compliance assessment on reporting entities’ policies, procedures and controls for relating to politically exposed persons (PEPs). Weblinks follow:

https://www.dia.govt.nz/AML-CFT-Regulatory-Findings-Report-2020-available and https://www.dia.govt.nz/AML-CFT-Targeted-Compliance-Assessments

22 Apr 2021 – Government, Treasury and the RBNZ advised that a Cabinet decision to adopt the final measures resulting from the Reserve Bank Act Review will see drafting commence for new legislation to be known as the Deposit Takers Act. This Act will create a single regulatory regime for all bank and non-bank deposit takers (such as building societies and finance companies). It will also introduce a new deposit insurance scheme that will protect up to $100,000 per depositor, per institution in the event of a failure. Relevant weblinks follow:

https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/deposit-taking-measures-protect-financial-stability-and-new-zealanders

https://www.rbnz.govt.nz/news/2021/04/new-deposit-takers-act-a-step-closer

https://www.nzba.org.nz/2021/04/22/deposit-guarantee-scheme-provides-extra-security-for-depositors/


Core services focus by banks sees them exit insurance

Current economic conditions are accelerating a recent trend in banking - a focus on core services - as evidence, we offer this series of announcements:

Alongside this, traditional branch services are being cut or slimmed down. This shift to digital was given a further shove by lockdowns so the time is right to re-appraise the value of each branch in the network. In addition to that, the value of each service in the branch is being reconsidered as well. With the decision by ANZ to withdraw from offering cash foreign exchange services being announced: https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/123131192/anz-to-stop-offering-foreign-currency-citing-drop-in-demand-due-to-covid19 

Although perhaps this is not just about economic conditions, but also competitive ones. Digital disruption is coming to the world of banking. A slew of online and consumer lenders has been grabbing attention (and high valuations) on the ASX. More challengers are likely to come. This is prompting a strategic rethink by several banks. The regulatory environment is shifting as well, creating more space for the change: