ASIC secures $10 million in remuneration for Allianz travel insurance customers
Australia’s corporate watchdog has secured $10 million in remediation payments to Allianz insurance customers who were allegedly misled on websites including Expedia.
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) took the action against Allianz Insurance and Allianz Global Assistance (known as AWP).
The remediation payments come after ASIC announced it had begun court action against Allianz and AWP for allegedly misleading consumers on Expedia travel websites in September.
The insurance was sold to 31,500 consumers through Allianz’s website and its distribution partners, including Expedia.
Allianz sold travel insurance through a number of channels, including its own website, the AWP website, airlines, financial institutions, and travel agencies.
The $10 million in refunds are for several forms of misconduct accepted by Allianz and AWP including:
- The sale of policies to consumers who were not eligible to make a claim
- Partially paid travel insurance claims
- The sale of policies on Expedia websites for premiums that were higher than those for policies sold on a standalone basis
ASIC acting chair Karen Chester said the corporate watchdog had “taken steps to ensure customers are remediated in full”.
“Insurers need to be careful to make sure that they don’t mislead consumers into thinking they have insurance cover for something when they don’t,” Ms Chester said.
“ASIC has not only initiated civil proceedings concerning an aspect of the conduct, but ensured more than 31,000 consumers are fully remediated.”
In response to the proceedings, Allianz and AWP have removed potentially misleading or deceptive statements from their websites and those of their partners, remediated travel insurance customers whose claims were partially paid, and refunded premiums, with interest, to customers who had purchased travel insurance from Allianz’s own website or those of its partners.
Consumers who have concerns about their travel insurance purchased from Allianz or its partners between June 2012 and November 2018, can visit the Allianz Travel Insurance Website Review website for more information about the remediation program.