Pilot to tackle non-disclosure

Norwich Union is taking a groundbreaking approach to drive down the number of critical illness and life insurance claims rejected due to "non-disclosure".

In an industry first, the insurer is contacting 5,000 of its existing protection policyholders, inviting them to review their initial applications and notify the company of any medical details that they may have missed off their original forms.

The aim of the pilot is to allow customers to correct any mistakes or omissions made on application, which could therefore have invalidated any future claims.

Any information provided by customers as a result of the pilot will be used to establish whether changes need to be made to their current policies - such as a change in premiums or re-rating. By giving customers the opportunity to revisit their application form and declare any omissions now, this should prevent a claim being declined at a later date due to non-disclosure.

Willie Mowatt, director of risk products for Norwich Union, says: "While the majority of valid life insurance and critical illness claims are straightforward and paid out in full, unfortunately a percentage are rejected because customers have not disclosed their full medical history and as a result their policies are actually invalid. We want to be able to clearly advise people who think they may have non-disclosed how to proceed if they believe they may have missed something off their application form. We feel this is the right approach to try to help customers prevent non-disclosure in the event of a claim. Having a policy declined due to non-disclosure just adds to the stress at what is a very difficult time."

The pilot will target 5,000 customers throughout the UK. Norwich Union will analyse the results and consider whether to rollout the pilot to more of its customers.

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