Zurich yesterday reported record levels of customers applying for life assurance ahead of the Gender Directive taking effect on 21 December 2012.
Customer applications via intermediaries have increased by 50% compared to the year to date weekly average, suggesting growing consumer awareness about the importance of protection and securing cover at lower, gender specific rates, at the same time as G-Day enjoys greater prominence in the media. Peter Hamilton Zurich’s head of protection for UK Life said, ”We cannot be sure that this increase in customer interest is being driven by the soon to be implemented Gender Directive. However, any signs that growing numbers of customers are engaging and protecting their financial position can only be a good thing. In the current economic climate, protecting yourself and your family has never been more important. ”At Zurich we’re doing our best to ensure that the majority of our protection policies submitted online get an instant decision, and we are doing all we can to ensure that customers have cover in place on gender specific rates before 21 December 2012.” The following dates apply to Zurich’s protection products:
– 10 December 2012 – gender neutral pricing took effect for Zurich’s Adaptable Life Plan (whole of life) guaranteed rates and Income Protection Plan
– 17 December 2012 – gender neutral pricing takes effect for Zurich’s Level Protection and Decreasing Mortgage Cover plan
Applications submitted before these dates will be issued on gender specific rates up until 20 December 2012. We are able to act upon requirements received up until 6.30pm on 20 December and will still issue that night. Applications not fully processed by 20 December 2012 will be automatically issued on gender neutral rates once all requirements are received, assuming the customer and adviser are happy to proceed with the new premium.