Consumer complains she was misinformed when renewing her insurance policy

Insurance Pricing

Kerry complained that she’d not been given enough information to make an informed choice about the cost of her insurance.

What happened

Kerry had been with the same insurer for three years when she received her renewal invite. This explained she could contact it to discuss her options and make sure she had the right policy.

Kerry wanted to make sure she was getting the best deal, so she contacted her insurer and asked if the policy she had was the cheapest one she could get. Her insurer said it could offer a slight discount on the price offered in the renewal invite, and Kerry agreed to it.

Kerry called again a year later and asked the same question. This time the adviser she spoke with said there was an alternative policy that provided the same level of cover but at half the price. Kerry asked when this became available and the adviser said it had been available two years ago.

Kerry complained that she’d been treated unfairly when she sought a discount the year before. She said she wasn’t offered the alternative policy which was considerably cheaper and had she been offered it sooner, she would have taken this out at the time.

Unhappy with the response from her insurer, Kerry contacted our service to make a complaint.

What we said

We felt it was clear when Kerry first called to speak with her insurer about her policy that she was trying to get cover that met her needs for the best price possible. When she contacted her insurer it had an alternative policy available that it could have offered Kerry. This would have met her needs and would have been cheaper than the older existing policy she was on.

We didn’t think the insurer needed to proactively move Kerry to the new policy when it was first launched two years ago and the renewal invite made it clear that other options might be available if she called to discuss these.

But when she first called it should have discussed the alternative policy with her and offered this. It was available with the same brand and sales channel she was using and the business should have provided the information about the alternative.

When it failed to do so Kerry didn’t have all the information she needed to make an informed choice about her insurance. And she paid more for her insurance than she would have had the alternative been discussed and offered.

We asked the insurer to confirm what Kerry would have paid originally had the alternative policy been offered. As this was less than what she paid, we asked it to refund the difference with interest added on top.