By proposing the Treasury Laws Amendment (Putting Members’ Interests First) Bill 2019 (due to come into effect October this year), the Australian Government has reintroduced the possibility of a prohibition on providing automatic insurance cover to members under the age of 25 and those with account balances below $6,000. While the Bill is yet to be debated, it could be reintroduced swiftly after the election, as we saw with the Protecting Your Super Bill. Trustees and insurers cannot afford to be complacent.
We are proud to have supported more than 1,500 young Australians since 2015, paying out $110 million in claims to members below the age of 25. Under the proposed Bill, trustees cannot offer new members any cover until their account balance reaches $6,000. Furthermore, many workers, particularly those in casual and part-time employment may not be able to receive any insurance cover for 18-24 months as their balance builds up to $6,000. While these changes have been designed to prevent member account balances being eroded, they could affect those working in lower paid industries, meaning that vulnerable Australians with lower earning capacities (and, likely, less savings) could be those uninsured for the longest.
Our focus goes far beyond paying claims – we want to make a difference in members’ lives throughout the course of their relationship with us and we support these members to return to wellness and work as part of their claims journey.