Yesterday IVASS published on its website Regulation No. 46 of 3 May 2016 ("Regulation 46") - amending ISVAP Regulation No. 24 of 19 May 2008 ("Regulation 24") on the procedure for the submission of complaints to IVASS and the management of complaints by insurance companies. Regulation 46 extends the scope of Regulation 24 to Italian insurance intermediaries as well as EU insurance intermediaries passported into Italy on either the freedom to provide services or the freedom of establishment regime ("EU Intermediaries").
Regulation 46, among other things, provides the following:
- After Title III of Regulation 24 (Complaints submitted to insurance companies),there is a new Title III-bis regarding 'Complaints concerning insurance intermediaries".
- Complaints related to insurance agents must be handled by the relevant insurance companies. In any case, insurance agents will need to be involved in the management of the complaints and must provide the insurance company with all necessary information.
- Insurance brokers as well as banks, banking financial intermediaries, Italian investment firms and Poste Italiane must instead directly manage the complaints received in accordance with a dedicated complaints management policy that they are required to adopt and implement.
- Banks, banking financial intermediaries, Italian investment firms and Poste Italiane as well as the 'big brokers' – meaning brokers having their general manager and/or chief executing director enrolled in the IVASS register of brokers and having 10 or more employees/collaborators involved in mediation outside the premises enrolled in the relevant section of the IVASS register - must also put in place an internal function in charge of complaints handling.
- Specific rules apply to the outsourcing of the complaints handling or of specific phases of the procedure.
- Pre-contractual documentation must include information on the submission of complaints.
- EU Intermediaries must handle the complaints received in accordance with the terms and procedures applicable to Italian insurance companies and intermediaries, i.e. they must respond to the complainant within 45 days in plain and easily understandable language with a clear explanation of the insurance intermediary's position when the complaint is rejected or partially accepted. Complaints must also be recorded in a dedicated archive. Also EU Intermediaries will need to establish a dedicated internal function in charge of complaints handling.