TAL Backdates Trauma Definitions

TAL will apply the new minimum standard trauma definitions within the Life Insurance Code of Practice (LICP) to all new claims received on individual policies purchased since 10 August 2009.

TAL Life Chief Executive Brett Clark

TAL Group Chief Executive, Brett Clark

The insurer announced the move as part of its efforts to exceed the requirements of the FSC developed LICP, which came into force from 1 July 2017, and only requires FSC life insurance members to apply the minimum definitions from that date (see: FSC Life Code Commences With Finalised Trauma Definitions).

TAL Group Chief Executive and Managing Director, Brett Clark said that since the release of the Code the insurer had taken steps to improve its accountability and had appointed an independent adviser to review TAL’s claims management practices for areas of improvement and was committed to public reporting of its’ Code performance each year.

“The task for us all now is to look beyond the Code…”

“The adoption of the Code is a key milestone for our industry, and for TAL it’s another step towards achieving our stated ambition: that our customers understand and value the protection they have and are confident we will be there when they need us most,” Clark said.

TAL stated it would also be introducing consumer testing to ensure it was meeting the letter and spirit of the Code, simplifying product fact sheets for all direct products and creating support material for customers affected by a major illness.

Clark called on other life insurers to look beyond the Code and find ways to lift standards and improve transparency in the sector.

“The task for us all now is to look beyond the Code, and challenge ourselves to improve every area of our business through innovative thinking and a greater focus on the needs of the consumer,” Clark said.

“We look forward to continuing to work with the FSC, other life insurance industry members and superannuation fund trustees on the next iteration of the Code to continue driving improvements in our industry, which plays such an important role in the life and wellbeing of Australians.

  • John Galt

    But why?

    • ken

      Because they can John ? Just as Old Risky and BKY mentioned. What may not be so prevalent unless you were around in the 90’s is National Mutual did exactly the same thing to AC&L clients so as AC&L were transitioned into National Mutual they wore hefty increases Amp did it earlier after acquiring National Mutual and now they have “copped” it again. My own policy increased from $340 a month to nearly $900 in just over 4 years, the industry average at that time was around $500 It was too much for me to pay and I sort cover elsewhere along with those I could “save” but how many clients were stuck because of health issues I can only guess.
      Eventually the weight of cost won and they had to “run the gauntlet” and hope nothing happened or forgo putting food on the table. What a joke when this can go unchecked !

  • BKY

    you want to lift your game FSC???…then add a code of ethics to the mix…you want to improve transparency?…then stop using the bad group claims experience as a mechanism to increase rates on old closed series underwritten products or at the very least place some sought of certainty around limiting the number of times and the % increases the Life company can make to these old closed series products. This would go a long way to providing certainty for people that are most likely sub-standard risks that have no choice but to be bent over by the insurer holding the risk…bad ethical behaviour…but then again great for shareholders when their business can increase rates in an unlimited unchecked manner and either rid themselves of the risk or collect the ever increasing rates. Great business model poor example of ethics…just an observation…

  • Old Risky

    Well the FSC could start with the huge increases AMP applied recently to old NML products AMP purchased without due diligence in 2009. An increase of 30% for Level premium IP ( 16% for stepped) was announced. without blinking an eye and bugger the folks who are NOW uninsurable.
    But for some reason neither Risk Info nor the other industry circulars ( other than “Insurance News”, primarily a GI publication ) gave this outrageous occurrence the publicity it deserved
    Even advisers with AMP clients had to hunt for the details on the AMP Adviser website

  • Ben

    Wow TAL. I think this is the first time an Insurance company has voluntarily made a decision which will benefit existing policy holders at the cost of the company (not just fiddling with wording to get better ratings).

    Great work Brett and TAL for showing that even though your commitment is to your share holders, you do have some compassion for your clients.

    Just please don’t follow the the AIA style (that’s unfair cos they all do it) cash grab by lifting the rates on your existing Level Premium book to pay for this.

  • Reality Check

    These “minimum definitions” will make no difference to claims for policies post 2009. I challenge TAL to post examples of claims now paid where this has made a difference.
    I expect if so we will see another round of enormous premium increases by TAL to pay for it.
    As for simplifying direct product information, its already too simple! Why don’t you commit to providing direct product quotes that include premium projections?, or highlight boldly the huge standard number of exclusions? or boldly highlight that if your direct customer bought the TAL product through an adviser and not directly it would be half the price and a better, safer product??
    Just more FSC fabrication and deceit.