The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has admitted it has received insufficient information from insurers to determine whether inappropriate payments have been involved in the sale of direct insurance.
Answering questions on notice from the Joint Parliamentary Committee on Corporations and Financial Services, the regulator said it could not say with certainty whether payments from insurers had inappropriately influenced the way products were sold and distributed, but it would be exploring the issue in its current review of direct life.
Dealing with the advised life insurance channel, ASIC said it did not have detailed responses on how and if payments to advisers were communicated to clients, but had seen several examples of Statements of Advice (SOAs) appropriately disclosing sponsorship, training and other benefits given to licensees and advisers from insurers.
“However, we cannot confidently say that this is prevalent across the financial advice industry,” the ASIC response said.
“There is insufficient information in the responses as to the nature of the payments to determine whether payments may inappropriately influence the advice given,” it said.