During a review of our policy processes, we have discovered that some Multi-product or Goldshield discounts have been applied incorrectly.
For some Members, this means they did not receive a discount they were entitled to, while in other cases, Members may have received discounts they were not eligible for.
We are currently correcting these errors to ensure these discounts are applied correctly. If we have overcharged Members, we will be refunding these Members and paying them compensation for this mistake.
If Members have received a discount they were not entitled to, we will not be seeking repayment of discounted premiums but we will be correcting the mistake, and their premiums will be recalculated when their policy comes up for its annual renewal.
Why did it happen?
These errors have come about in various ways. Occasionally, there has been a simple human error in not applying discounts when a Member was eligible for them, and vice versa. This is particularly the case when a Member has been receiving a discount; has then cancelled a policy, meaning they were no longer eligible to receive the discount; and the discount has not been formally removed.
Sometimes, an error has been made because we have not been clear enough about when a discount should be applied, particularly when a Member holds policies under a combination of individual and business memberships. We have clarified these rules and are sharing these with both our Members and staff so it’s clear when a discount can and cannot be applied.
When do these changes take effect?
We are currently contacting all affected Members, explaining what has happened and clarifying the eligibility rules for these discounts. If the Member is entitled to a refund, we will also be asking them to confirm bank details for payment.
If the Member has received a discount they were not eligible for, we will remove the discount when the policy comes up for its renewal. At that point, their premiums will be recalculated, and we will let them know what changes we have made.
What do I need to do?
You do not need to do anything unless we contact you regarding a refund, in which case we may ask you to confirm or provide your bank account details.
If you are not contacted, it means we have reviewed your policy and have not found any errors.
How do I know it won’t happen again?
As part of our review, we’ve developed ways to prevent these errors happening again. These involve increasing the amount of training staff are given on these discounting rules and improving processes and systems where possible.
We have also set up a monthly review process to ensure that if we do make an error in future, we can identify it and put it right in a timely fashion.
How do you qualify for a discount?
Our Goldshield discount of up to 20% is provided to Members who have a House, Contents and Private Motor Vehicle policy with MAS.
Our Multi-product discount of up to 10% is provided to Members who hold two of either a House, Contents or Private Motor Vehicle policy with MAS.
Members must have different products to qualify, as multiple policies within the same product category will not qualify for a Package Discount.
What if some policies are under my name and some are under my spouse’s name?
In these situations, the policies are considered together and you would qualify for the appropriate discount.
There are limits to how far this policy pairing extends. You need to be linked in our system to another Member as a spouse, de facto partner or fellow trustee for the combined policies to be able to qualify you for a discount.
We do not extend discounts to Members connected by other types of relationships, such as business relationships. For example, if you hold some policies under your individual membership and other policies under a MAS business membership, the policies cannot be considered together to qualify you for a discount.
A business can qualify for a discount if several qualifying policies are held solely under the Company membership.
If the Company has only been receiving a Multi-product or Goldshield discount on the basis of products held by related Members (for example, by directors as individual MAS Members), then the company will lose the discount at the next policy renewal.
What will this mean for my premiums in future?
In general terms, if you have previously been receiving a discount that is being removed, your premiums are likely to increase. And alternatively, if you have not been receiving a discount that you should have been, then your premiums may decrease.
If you are worried about whether you can still afford your insurance, we strongly recommend you raise this with us, as there are ways we can adjust the terms of your insurance to make it more affordable. For example, you may be able to reduce your premiums by increasing your excess.
Call us on 0800 800 627 to discuss your circumstances.
I’m not happy with what you’re proposing. What are my options?
If you have questions about the remediation process itself, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you wish to make a complaint about the process, you can find details about how to do this at https://www.mas.co.nz/contact/make-a-complaint/.
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