1An insurer is responsible for producing, and an insurance intermediary for providing to a customer, the information required by this chapter and by the distance communication rules (see ICOBS 3.1). However, an insurer is responsible for providing information required on mid-term changes, and an insurance intermediary is responsible for producing price information if it agrees this with an insurer.
The level of information required will vary according to matters such as:
the policy terms, including its main benefits, exclusions, limitations, conditions and its duration;
the policy's overall complexity;
whether the policy is bought in connection with other goods and services;
distance communication information requirements (for example, under the distance communication rules less information can be given during certain telephone sales than in a sale made purely by written correspondence (see ICOBS 3.1.14 R)); and
whether the same information has been provided to the customer previously and, if so, when.
In determining what is “in good time”, a firm should consider the importance of the information to the customer's decision-making process and the point at which the information may be most useful. Distance communication timing requirements are also relevant (for example, the distance communication rules enable certain information to be provided post-conclusion in telephone and certain other sales (see ICOBS 3.1.14 R and ICOBS 3.1.15 R)).
Cancellation rights do not affect what information it is appropriate to give to a customer in order to enable him to make an informed purchasing decision.
In this rule, ‘renewal’ means carrying forward a policy, at the point of expiry and as a successive or separate operation of the same nature and duration as the policy, with the same insurance intermediary or the same insurer.
in a way that is consistent with the presentation of (a) so that they can be easily compared:
where one or more mid-term changes were made to the policy which the firm proposes to renew, an amount calculated by annualising (or otherwise adjusting as appropriate to the duration of the proposed policy) the premium in effect following the most recent mid-term change, excluding all fees or charges associated with those mid-term changes;
a statement alongside (a) and (b) indicating that the consumer:
should check that the level of cover offered by the renewal is appropriate for their needs; and
is able, if they so wish, to compare the prices and levels of cover offered by alternative providers.
Where the proposed renewal will be the fourth or subsequent renewal the consumer has entered into in respect of the policy, the firm must include the following statement, to appear alongside the matters required by (3)(a), (b) and (c)(i) (but omitting (c)(ii)): “You have been with us a number of years. You may be able to get the insurance cover you want at a better price if you shop around.”
The firm must communicate the information in (3) and (4):
If a policy is bought by a consumer in connection with other goods or services a firm must, before conclusion of the contract, disclose its premium separately from any other prices and whether buying the policy is compulsory.
In the case of a distance contract, disclosure of whether buying the policy is compulsory may be made in accordance with the timing requirements under the distance communication rules (see ICOBS 3.1.8 R, ICOBS 3.1.14 R and ICOBS 3.1.15 R).