What’s happened? 

During a review of our policy processes, we have discovered an error affecting life and disability income policies that were renewed between 2008 and 2021, depending on the policy and cover types. 

Each of these policies are adjusted for inflation each year but our review found the wrong inflation rate had been applied. This means some Members have received a higher level of cover - and hence higher premiums - than should have been provided. 

 

Why did it happen? 

Each Member’s annual inflation adjustment is made automatically by our IT systems. Unfortunately, the rate of inflation was loaded incorrectly, which affected the inflation applied to the policy and the premiums charged. We have fixed this error and have changed our system to prevent the error occurring again.  

 

Do I get a refund if I no longer have a policy? 

If you previously held a MAS policy and you were affected by this error, we will refund any overpaid premiums, even if you have since cancelled your policy.    

 

How do I know if my policy has inflation adjustment on it? 

Information about the inflation adjustment is displayed in different ways, depending on the type of policy you hold. In the policy documentation that you have received from MAS – usually on the policy schedule – you will see a line marked “Inflation Adjustment” set to “Yes”, “Standard CPI” or similar.  

If your policy has inflation adjustment on it, you can also check the inflation rate applied by comparing this year’s sum insured to the sum insured on last year’s policy. Depending on your policy wording, your sum insured will have changed by a small percentage between policy years, generally between 2% and 5%.  

 

Why did I get more than one letter or email?  

We are addressing these errors policy by policy. This means that if you hold several policies, which have all been affected by the error, you will receive a letter or email about each policy separately.  

 

Why did my friend/colleague get contacted about this remediation and I didn’t?  

This issue only affects some life and income protection policies, and only where inflation adjustment has been applied, so not all Members will receive these communications.  

We can assure you that if your policy has been affected by this issue, we will contact you in due course, and any compensation provided will reflect the additional amount of time it took us to contact you.  


What happens if I don’t respond to your communications?
  

If we don’t hear from you, we will send several follow-up communications. If you are entitled to a refund but we don’t hear back from you, we will donate the refund to charity on your behalf. 

 

How do I know this error has been fixed?

MAS has made a series of fixes to address the underlying root cause of this issue, including changing the way that inflation adjustment rates are administered in our system, and the process for updating the rates we apply each year. We have put additional controls in place to prevent this error from occurring again.

 

I’m not happy with what you’re proposing. What are my options?  

If you have questions about the remediation process itself, please contact remediation@mas.co.nz.  

If you wish to make a complaint about the process, you can find details about how to do this here.   

 

For additional information about our remediation efforts, click here.


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