Risk Product, Company and Regulatory Updates as at 20 November 2018

Product Updates

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ANZ releases new underwriting engine
ANZ has launched its new underwriting engine, offering predictive underwriting with a big-data backend.

The new underwriting system will set new OneCare customer applications up, with faster personal statements, less medical questions (down from 38 to 11), and a complete application in 15 minutes.

TAL product updates
TAL has updated its Accelerated Protection product range, as follows:

  • Updates to pricing, including for clients who bundle products

  • Enhancements to critical illness cover

  • Twenty-two definitions updates to Guaranteed Future Insurability benefit for all lump sum benefits

  • Apply Double Critical Illness on attached and linked policies

  • Now offering a new TPD insurance continuation option, including for white-collar occupations, of up to $1 million of Any Occupation insurance cover to continue to age 70

  • New business expense option inside income protection - good for sole traders - covering all reasonable business expenses

Company Updates

Zurich and Oxford join income protection study
A three-year research project has commenced with the University of Oxford looking at income protection for modern workers. The Agile Protection program is to develop frameworks so workers can have access to more flexible protections and support in the new-world labour market.

Elements of the research will look into consumer behaviour with insurance products, while others will look at product and service design. Publication is anticipated at the tail-end of 2019.

ClearView launches LaVista Licensee Solutions
Mike Pope is to run ClearView’s new business venture, LaVista Licensee Solutions, a licensing service to help advisers and small practices get their own licence. LaVista helps advisers as a partner service, to help with compliance, adviser monitoring, helpdesk for technical support, and marketing support.

Regulatory Updates

ASIC now able to hire outside the box
ASIC has had a rule removed allowing it to now hire the staff it needs, as opposed to only staff available under the Public Service Act. The public service requires strict pay-scale guidelines and graduated payment structures, which can be a hindrance when it comes to hiring specialists who are in high demand. APRA and the Reserve Bank of Australia also observe this break with public service requirements.

FSC issues revised code draft
The Financial Services Council has issued a heavily revised draft Life Insurance Code of Practice and invited public consultation. The revised document has over 30 significant changes, including on mental health, products, superannuation trustees, genetic testing, and consumer protection provisions.

FASEA still working on details of education standards framework
The Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA) has said that it received over 800 submissions and 400 individual responses after asking for public consultation, with the latest outcome being that the FPA’s Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation and the Association of Financial Advisers (AFA) Fellow Chartered Financial Planner (FChFP) designation will count for just two credits for prior learning. CFP-holders who gained their designation prior to 2007 will not be able to receive the two unit points.

The adviser exam is now 3.5 hours with limited open book access. Three weeks of new consultation will ensue, with amendments in the pipeline.