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Media Release: End of the line for unsolicited phone sales of direct life insurance and CCI

The Financial Rights Legal Centre (Financial Rights) has welcomed the Australian Securities and Investment Commission’s (ASIC’s) announcement that they will ban unsolicited phone sales of direct life insurance and Consumer Credit Insurance (CCI) sales practices from 13 January 2020.
Unsolicited direct life insurance is sold to consumers by life insurers or their sales partners, by outbound telemarketing.

“This is the end of the line for this dodgy business model,” said Alexandra Kelly, Financial Rights’ Director of Casework. “Unsolicited direct life insurers and their associated partners are the ‘used car salesmen’ of the insurance industry and deserved to be permanently blocked. These businesses use high pressure sales tactics to bag a sale. These tactics can include refusing to send out paperwork unless you agree to buy the product first, not explaining the future cost and exclusions of a product or offering promotional gifts to reel you in. Such tactics are unacceptable and have led to poor consumer decision making. Thousands of Australians have ended up with low value life insurance products and CCI that that they don’t want or need and can’t afford.

“We commend ASIC’s call here in taking this strong action and look forward to the Government quickly implementing broader anti-hawking laws in implementing Banking Royal Commission recommendations 4.1 and 3.4 and tightening up the definition of “unsolicited”. The sooner this industry is switched off and unplugged the better.”

For further information contact Drew MacRae Policy and Advocacy Officer drew.macrae@financialrights.org.au on 02 8204 1386.