CBA initiates claims scandal remediation



CBA says it will pay the claims of three customers in the CommInsure scandal, with another 100 customers expected to benefit from an upgrade to its definitions.

 

In a submission to the Senate Economics References Committee Scrutiny of Financial Advice inquiry, the bank admitted it “could have done better" in some areas, including updating definitions.

CBA said it has accelerated an upgrade to its heart attack and severe rheumatoid arthritis definitions in its trauma product.

“The product disclosure statements relating to these definitions for new customers have now been updated and coverage has been backdated and applies for all claim events from May 2014 onwards," its submission said.

“May 2014 was the date of the last relevant product disclosure statement for the trauma product. On the basis of actuarial estimates we expect up to 100 customers will benefit from the backdating of these upgrades.”

CBA also said it had written to five customers who “experienced very difficult circumstances” and were subjects of media reports. 

CBA said it will pay the claims of three of those five customers. The other two had been paid prior to this year. 

The bank, however, did rebut other allegations of deliberate misconduct within CommInsure, which were raised in a joint Fairfax Media and Four Corners report.

“We do not tolerate behaviour that could put the financial wellbeing of the customers, businesses and communities we serve at risk. To date, we have not identified any instances of malicious staff misconduct which has led to the decline of a claim,” CBA said.

The bank also rejected allegations that whistleblower Dr Benjamin Koh was fired for raising concerns about business practices.

“Dr Koh was dismissed for serious and repeated breaches of customers’ privacy, involving highly sensitive personal, medical and financial information over a lengthy period of time. His statements and associated conduct during the investigation of his breaches were also misleading,” CBA said.

“The investigation found that Dr Koh sent around 230 emails, attaching a total of around 260 documents, to his personal Gmail account. The emails were unencrypted and included sensitive customer files, medical reports, financial information and CommInsure corporate information.”

As for accusations regarding the destruction of medical documents, CBA said it has not found any evidence to support this.

“Based on investigations at the time, we did not find any evidence of medical files being intentionally deleted or tampered with resulting in missing information, as has been alleged,” the bank said.

 

 

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