Prime Minister Tony Abbott has announced the government will amend the Life Insurance Act 1995 to change the regime for lost and unclaimed life insurance.
A statement jointly released by the prime minister and assistant treasurer Josh Frydenberg today revealed that the government will seek to revert to the previous seven-year threshold for lost policies.
The threshold for unclaimed bank accounts will also be increased from three to seven years.
“In 2011/2012 around $70 million was transferred to ASIC as unclaimed money,” the statement said. “In 2012/2013, after the former government’s change, 156,000 accounts worth around $550 million were transferred to ASIC.
“The former government's change imposed large costs and inconvenience on those Australians that had to go through the time-consuming process of reclaiming their money. In some cases this took six months.”
The Financial Services Council issued a statement welcoming the move, with CEO Sally Loane saying the change will save many Australians the “unnecessary time and hassle in reclaiming their money”.