ISVAP regulation no. 35/2010 provides for specific duties of information for insurance companies and regulates the advertising of life and third-party insurance contracts; the provisions became effective on 1st December 2010 recently modified by Provision no. 2880 dated 25th February 2011.

According to the above mentioned regulation, insurance companies shall provide the contracting parties with and informative file consisting of: an informative note (containing all relevant information on the company and the contract), a brief note (summary of the previous document), the insurance conditions (specific information concerning the contractual provisions), the separate management regulation (information referring to the separate investment fund managed by the company and connected to the contract), the glossary (explication of the terms) and the proposal or policy form.

Furthermore, the insurance company shall (i) publish the informative file on its own web site, (ii) promptly update the contents and (iii) inform the contracting parties, in writing, about any adjustment concerning the insurance conditions.

With reference to insurance contracts’ advertising, the aim of the regulation is to ensure that the contracting parties will not be provided with misleading information; specific elements shall be compulsorily included in the advertising, such as the name of the company, the warning “read the informative file before the subscription” and any useful information about where/how to consult the informative file.

In conclusion, since 1st December 2010, insurance companies must compulsorily: (i) apply the regulation to any new contract commercialized; (ii) update the documents already arranged for any contract formerly undersigned and still effective and promptly inform the contracting parties about any adjustment; (iii) apply the provisions on insurance contracts’ advertising, in order to avoid providing any misleading information.

In addition to this, please note that there has been a recent update. Article 54 of the Regulation no.35/2010 has been recently amended by the ISVAP Provision no. 2880 of the last 25th February.

According to such amendment, the following dispositions of the ISVAP Circular no. 551/2005, initially rescinded, became effective again: dispositions concerning the pre-contractual informative documents in case of insurance contracts referring to the Italian class III (on the length of human life, marriage assurance, birth assurance, whose main benefits are directly linked to the value of units of a UCITS [undertakings for collective investment in transferable securities] or the value of the assets in an internal fund or to an index or other reference values) and the Italian class V (capital redemption operations).