Regulator IRDAI has extended the facility for life insurers to obtain the consent of prospective policy holders electronically by three months till March 31, 2021. In view of the disruption of normal business activity following outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, IRDAI in August, on an experimental basis, had permitted life insurers to obtain consent of customers for pure risk products (policies which do not involve any savings element) electronically till December 31.
On a review of the working of the arrangement and on the basis of feedback from the life insurers, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) has now extended the time period and the facility to all products. “Life Insurers are allowed to obtain the customer’s consent through electronic means i.e., without requiring wet signature on the proposal form, for the business solicited by individual insurance agents and insurance intermediaries under all products, till March 31, 2021,” it said in a circular.
It further said the suitability assessment, benefit illustration (wherever applicable) and the completed proposal form should be sent to the proposer on his/ her registered e-mail ID or mobile number in the form of an e-mail or a message with a link as the case may be. “The proposer, if he/she wishes to consent to the product offered, the benefit illustration and the completed proposal form, may do so by affixing digital signature or by clicking the confirmation link or by validating the OTP shared,” IRDAI said.
Also, the insurer should not insist on payment of moneys towards proposal deposit till the receipt of consent of the proposer. Certain conditions have also been imposed in respect of sales made by individual insurance agents.
The insurance agents should not solicit non-single premium unit-linked insurance policies for annualised premium exceeding Rs 50,000 or single premium unit-linked insurance policies exceeding Rs 1,00,000. Besides, the insurer should verify at least 3 per cent of sales to ascertain compliance with these provisions.
Insurers have been asked to provide appropriate training to all persons involved in the sales or solicitation process to ensure that the consent of the customer is obtained only after clear information has been provided on the product being sold. Besides, the insurers have to monitor the grievances received pertaining to the sales and promptly undertake corrective actions.