Royal Commission response: Design and distribution obligations

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In the last sitting week of parliament, the first piece of legislation responding to the Hayne Report was passed. New product design and distribution obligations will apply to insurers (and underwriting agencies) from 5 April 2021 requiring them to develop and document a target market determination for each retail client product. New obligations will ensure that product […]

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Four emerging trends in insurtech

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You might think that Australia is behind the rest of the world when it comes to insurtech – but it’s not. After seeing what’s on offer in both Europe and Australia recently, I identified four key insurtech trends. 1. Data is improving insurance products Many incumbent insurers have legacy systems that hold important data. An […]

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Royal commission response: Anti-hawking

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Currently insurers are not permitted to offer financial products for issue or sale to retail clients in the course of or because of an unsolicited meeting at all, or in the course of a telephone call unless they have met certain requirements. The result is that there is virtually no cold-calling in general insurance because […]

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Royal Commission Response – Claims as financial service

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The recommendation to regulate claims handling as a ‘financial service’ impacts both general insurance and life insurance, although this analysis is limited to general insurance. The change may be more far-reaching in its impact for the general insurance industry than initially thought. A government response could be quick The government announced in February that it would move quickly […]

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Why ASIC is stopping ICOs

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ASIC has recently stopped a number of retail initial coin offerings and token generation events (ICOs), has taken action in respect of a completed ICO and has even issued a stop order on a PDS for a crypto fund. ASIC’s two key concerns – misleading and deceptive information in the materials used to market the […]

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Crowd sourced equity funding – a quick primer

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From 28 September 2017, a new source of capital will become available to unlisted businesses – funding by the ‘crowd’. That’s you and me, mums and dads, and of course, the usual suspects – high net worth and institutional investors, who have previously had these investment opportunities pretty much to themselves. How’s it happened? Essentially, […]

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Buy/sell agreements and succession planning

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Businesses who fail to plan for death or serious illness of a principal may live to regret it! Imagine this – one of your co-owners falls seriously ill and needs to exit the business. Can you pay them out? How will you plan for the future? If they die, you could be in business with […]

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Contractual liability insurance

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Historically, contractual liability cover has been hard to obtain – especially blanket cover and until recently, it was generally unaffordable for many SMEs. The good news is that a small number of insurers have recently begun offering it to SMEs. Blanket contractual liability automatically covers liability assumed under all contracts entered into in the ordinary course […]

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Licensees: Beware risks and responsibilities of offering temporary home to equity based crowdfunding platforms

Equity based crowdfunding platforms may look to existing Australian Financial Services Licensees (AFSLs) for a ‘temporary home’ until they can get their own licence or expected regulatory changes become law, according to Charmian Holmes, Solicitor Director at The Fold Legal (The Fold). Crowdfunding platforms through which the funder receives shares in the funded company currently […]

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Proportionate liability

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Businesses (and their insurance brokers) waiting with bated breath for new model proportionate liability laws may be sorely disappointed. The basic principle of proportionate liability is that it enables responsibility for a damages claim to be allocated according to the degree to which each wrongdoer’s actions contributed to the loss. Proportionate liability legislation was seen […]

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