Risk People, Product, Company, and Regulatory Updates as at 6 September 2016

New Appointments

Zurich finalising job cuts
Zurich Insurance is cutting jobs in a restructure to combine life and non-life businesses. Zurich has made plans to save over US$1.33 billion by 2018. 

Product Updates

Asteron Life updates product definitions
Asteron Life has made some key changes to its Life Complete product. Key changes include: 

  • First retail insurance policy to offer 'unlikely to survive more than 24 months' terminal illness definition for super and non-super policies, retroactively applied
  • Partial trauma benefit and its definition of coronary artery angioplasty extended
  • Full trauma benefit is paid if policyholder undergoes triple vessel angioplasty performed during one or more procedures occurring within a two-month period
  • Partial trauma benefit paid for each one or two vessel angioplasty without any time restriction between claims
  • Melanoma criteria relaxed

AMP set to launch ground-breaking definition-less TPD and IP product
AMP is setting up a product that will not require medical definitions, but assesses whether claimants can return to their pre-claim lifestyle. 

Sunsuper redesigns TPD
Sunsuper has rejigged its total and permanent disability (TPD) insurance cover using TPD Assist, resulting in 30 per cent savings on the cost of insurance. TPD Assist removes the waiting period for the employed part of the definition which means more people get back to work faster. 

Company Updates

Energy Super using MLC for group insurance
MLC Life Insurance has been chosen to provide Energy Super members with their group salary continuance (income protection) insurance. MLC is already the industry super fund's default group life and total and permanent disability provider. 

AIA Australia's adviser support site relaunched
AIA Australia's Business Growth Hub has been relaunched a year after initial launch, providing tools and information to advisers. The relaunch now allows online access and management of policies, plus forms, guides, brochures, and access to industry consultants for marketing, client engagement, and other business development functions.  

TAL Risk Academy updated
TAL has added to its Risk Academy with a partnership with Charles Sturt University, which is now offering accreditation for Risk Academy classes, towards a university qualification at Sturt. 

Regulatory Updates

AFA saga updates, EGM to be held
The AFA has had a significant response to the call for the EGM recently by a member. Many of the forms submitted were invalid due to duplicates, non-member submissions, and missing identities of 28 forms, originally leaving the number below the five per cent required to trigger the meeting. However, since then, the number has been reached, and the Emergency General Meeting will be held.

Youi insurance under investigation in Australia
After admitting to poor sales practices in New Zealand, Youi is now under investigation in Australia for similar issues. Whistleblowers have claimed that Youi culture encouraged staff to defraud customers on a large scale by billing for policies that were not signed up for, and falsify documents to make sales.