TAL sets new half-year claims payout record
Australian life insurer, TAL, has hit a new record of benefits paid to customers in the six months from 1 April 2023, dishing out $2 billion in claims.
Living benefit payments saw a three per cent increase from the 2022/23 financial year, with Income Protection and Total and Permanent Disability (TPD) claims related to mental health conditions (23 per cent of all claims) being the key driver behind the increase.
Injuries and fractures, as well as cancer, accounted for 15 per cent of all claims, with 32,456 individuals and beneficiaries receiving payments in the six-month period. The life insurer found mental health conditions also overtook cancer as the main cause for claims in 2021/2022.
Jenny Oliver, TAL’s Chief Claims Officer, said $2 billion was the highest value in claims ever paid by the insurer in a half-year period.
“Paying claims is the most important thing we do. Life insurance provides our customers with peace of mind when making important decisions like buying a home or starting a family, and provides important financial protection during life’s biggest challenges,” she said.
“People often think that life insurance provides payments to families when a loved one passes away, but in reality, the large majority of claims are paid to help TAL customers as they recover from an illness or injury.
“At TAL we strive to continually improve the claims process and experience for our customers, our super fund partners and their members. This includes investing in digitising the right services to increase the speed and efficiency of the claims process, and increasing the integration between super fund partners, administrators and insurers, so claims can be paid faster.
“Customers need the right tools to help them engage with their insurance cover or make a claim. That is why we have developed Claims Assist where customers and super fund members can easily lodge and manage their claim, and Cover Assist which allows them to check and change their cover.”
Oliver said TAL adopts a “holistic view of health and recovery”, assessing the impacts of incidents on physical, mental and financial health.
“Our claims consultants are known for their supportive and empathetic approach to our customers when they are making a claim and recovering from illness or injury, in addition to helping people meet their financial obligations,” she said.
“Beyond a claim payment, TAL provides a wide range of support services to help our customers prevent illness or injury as well as to recover when things go wrong, including pain management, occupational rehabilitation services and cancer support to customers to help meet their health goals.”