MLC Life Insurance has addressed risk advice firm Bombora Advice’s accusations that one of its products includes a number of mental health exclusions designed to avoid claims.
In its submission to the parliamentary joint committee on corporations and financial services life insurance inquiry, Bombora Advice said the NAB Essential Life direct insurance product is designed to avoid claims for suicide.
The submission said the product “is priced 74.6 per cent higher than the comparison retail product that has the deterrent 13-month exclusion”.
Responding to the allegations at the life insurance inquiry hearings in Canberra, MLC Life Insurance chief executive David Hackett said Bombora’s statement regarding NAB’s mental health exclusions “is untrue”.
“As per page seven of the NAB Essential’s product disclosure statement, once an industry standard 13-month exclusion period is served, NAB Essential Life does indeed pay benefits for suicide,” he said.
Mr Hackett also addressed a statement raised in the life insurance inquiry hearings in Sydney on 24 February.
He said the statement “suggested that MLC Life Insurance has some sort of blanket exclusion on the provision of mental health cover to males”.
“I’m at a loss as to the basis of this suggestion, as it’s entirely incorrect,” Mr Hackett said.
“In fact, we pride ourselves on taking a progressive approach to the underwriting of customers with mental health issues regardless of their age, and are displaying industry best practice in our management of mental health-related claims.”
Last week, Risk Adviser reported on Bombora comments that John Trowbridge responded to.
Bombora Advice said the process around the Trowbridge review “was intended to be an industry agreed response to the ASIC Report 413”, but Mr Trowbridge changed the terms of reference before the final report was published.
Mr Trowbridge called Bombora’s claims “incorrect” and “contentious”, saying neither he nor the FSC changed the terms of reference.
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