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The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) has released a new General Insurance Code of Practice and by January 1, 2021 all insurers are required to implement the changes, which are legally binding.
From July 1, 2021, organisations can be fined for non-compliance and these fines can amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars. Larger breaches can result in significant financial impact, including compensation for loss or damage, and payment of a community benefit up to $100,000 per offence.
Minor breaches will attract minimal financial impact, and, with rectification steps within a certain time, companies can audit their own compliance with the Code at their own cost and advertise corrections.
When deviating from an agreed investigation behaviour, an individual can raise a complaint against the insurer with the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA), and complaints will be given much more weight.
Insurers also risk damage to their brand from negative media reports resulting from a failed or non-compliant investigation, where the claimant is often portrayed as the victim.
Complaints are on the rise — by a huge 230 per cent. The General Insurance Code Governance Committee found Australia’s insurance sector breached the code of practice 31,186 times during the 2019 financial year. Source: AFR.com.
About one-third of finalised complaints were found in favour of consumers or small businesses. Source: General Insurance in Australia, Annual Report, April 2020.
At least 50 of Australia’s top insurers are expected to abide by the new Code Of Practice come July 1, 2021.
The new Code of Practice includes very detailed changes and new requirements, down to the number of minutes an interview should take. Most systems are not equipped to handle this level of detail.
“… To meet that simple requirement, we need to count out four months, and then on top of that 30 days. At four months a process of review needs to start and within 30 days reviews must be finished and delivered. To ensure compliance, teams should build in reminders prior to that.”
“Polonious has analysed numerous client investigation processes to determine the efficiencies gained after implementing the SAME methodology.
On average, the ROI at 90 days after implementation was an approximate time saving of 33 per cent, with improvements at 15 out of the 18 stages of the investigation process.”
You benefit from using Polonious in so many ways…
More than any other factor, the ability to configure a case management solution to reflect your business process gives you a competitive and organizational advantage.
Faster turnaround times. By allowing users to focus on their core responsibilities and not administration and reporting, they are freed up to work the case and complete it in a timely manner.
Ease of navigation, offering easy to use person, organisation and entity searching, case filtering and deep data and document search functionality users can easily find critical information or cases and take action.
Instant overview of case statuses. Via the dashboard, users immediately get a view of their cases with statuses and key dates identified.
Instant updates. Managers in the office can access the newly added data at the press of a button and share it with internal or external clients.
Reduced administrative effort. Typically Polonious reduces case administration from 10 to 25%.
Guided behaviour via configuration of available actions makes it easy for users to understand what they should do next. Users can easily add updates and enter text, change statuses, upload documents or media, check off completed actions, record relevant metrics like case time, travel time, expenses or mileage traveled, proof entries made by others, record complaints or use the log entry as a basis to create a report.
Available anywhere, anytime, online or offline. Users in the field can update case information directly with any device that can run a browser or the ios or android application then sync back to Polonious when they next have access to the Internet.
Automated case reports. In many cases the reports can be completely automated using data, documents and images added during the investigation process.
Less is more. Users only see the parts of the system relevant to their involvement and only cases that they need to see. Once logged in, the user’s view of the world is dependent on many factors including their role in relation to a case such as as a specialist, supplier/vendor, staff member, manager or auditor, the current status of the case and the business units or organisations they are attached to.
Automated updates keep interested parties aware of the progress of their cases via status updates, emails or text (SMS) messages.