Insurance industry 'getting away with murder'

by Trevor Treharne28 Aug 2012

A former minister for Bob Hawke’s government has taken aim at the insurance industry, stating there is “much more to be done” to improve an industry which is “getting away with murder”.

Former Labor politician Barry Cohen has penned a column in The Australian telling the tale of his insurance woes.

Citing a recent survey which suggested that the insurance industry is not trusted by the public, Cohen went on to state: “A recent experience alerted me to the fact that insurance companies were still getting away with murder.”

Cohen goes on to tell the tale of how he took out home and content insurance, with the insurance evaluation taking just 15 minutes. Cohen then explains he had to make a claim after his wife lost her sapphire and diamond engagement ring, valued at $3500.

He then had to go to great lengths to prove that his wife had the ring, including blowing up pictures of his wife wearing the ring.

“Eventually the case manager rang to tell me that they would provide vouchers but they would be valued at only $2593,” said Cohen. “To my question, "Why such a devaluation?" he replied, "That's the discounted price we could have it made up for. And, by the way, you'll lose another $100 excess." None of this was mentioned when we signed up with the company.

“I asked, "How would you replace my 2000 books, my letter collection of over 1600 and 100 or so original cartoons?"

There was a long silence at the other end. "Mmmmm!" was his final word. Shorten did a great job on the insurance industry. Regrettably, there is much more to be done,” he added.


  • by Tony O'H 31/08/2012 1:22:44 PM

    I think he also missed the othe rimportant factor relating to commissions in that industry. Can you believe what they get paid upfront and that on average the 1sy year's premiums are paid out in commissions. Do the sums and comparisons to what Brokers do and have to go through etc !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I think I will be making more money from referrals to Advisors than as a broker, well qualified, experienced and met all requirements, for what!!!