Bank under no obligation to continually offer best-priced premiums

Insurance policies,
Theo took out insurance policies with the bank in 2001. Each year, on the anniversary of doing this, he received letters advising him of premium and benefit increases. In 2021, he was notified of a 35 per cent increase to premiums. He asked the bank to contact him, and while waiting to hear back he contacted an insurance broker who obtained a significant saving on his premiums through a multi-policy discount that still kept his existing policies.
August 2022

Theo complained to the bank that it had not applied discounts he was eligible for and had not been reviewing his policies and premiums to ensure they were the best for him, despite anniversary letters indicating it had. He asked for a refund of the discounts he believed he was entitled to and a lump-sum payment acknowledging the lack of management of his policies. The bank declined his requests, saying he was not eligible for the discounts, and that its annual letters invited him to contact the bank if he wanted his policies reviewed. Theo did not accept this and asked us to investigate.

Our investigation

A bank's obligation when advising on or selling an insurance policy is to ensure it suits the customer’s needs. It is under no continuing obligation to advise on or offer the best price on that insurance, or to otherwise ensure the customer is getting the best possible deal.  We examined the bank’s annual letters to evaluate whether they wrongly suggested the bank had reviewed his policies to ensure they were the best for him, but we were satisfied they did not. The letters said it had reviewed his premiums to ensure the bank could continue to offer him the benefits he had selected while still offering competitively priced premiums. This was correct: his policies had been adjusted to account for inflation, as measured by the consumer price index, and his benefits and premiums had been adjusted each accordingly. Theo had not been eligible for the multi-policy discount because the terms and conditions of this discount specified that it was available only to new policies quoted for after 2019.


We did not uphold Theo's complaints.

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