Guidelines issued on use of mobile apps to pay for insurance premiums
The Insurance Commission has approved the use of mobile apps to pay for premiums as long as these secured prior approval from the regulator.
In a statement issued on Monday, the Insurance Commission said it issued Circular Letter (CL) No. 2018-07 last January 16, which amended CL 2014-47 containing the guidelines on electronic commerce of insurance products.
Under the new circular, “insurance companies may use mobile applications in the distribution of their insurance products provided that the use thereof had been previously approved by the Insurance Commission.”
“The mobile applications that are allowed to be used may either be pre-installed in a mobile device, or an item in a SIM menu of a mobile network carrier, or those that are downloadable by the public through major digital platforms, such as Apple Store, Google Play and Microsoft Windows Marketplace,” it added.
According to Insurance Commissioner Dennis B. Funa, “The new regulation likewise provides a flexible framework as to the mode of payment of insurance products marketed and sold through mobile phones in addition to the usual payment using a credit/debit card or through accredited online payment system.”
“Under the enhanced framework, payment of insurance premiums availed through the use of mobile phones may now be paid through automatic deduction to existing load of the user to the network carrier, billed through the postpaid plan or deducted from existing load wallet.”
“As far as the Insurance Commission is concerned, the payment of insurance premiums by charging such amount to the prepaid load, postpaid plans and other electronic means is not violative of the Insurance Code. However, these payment methods are still subject to existing rules and regulations of the National Telecommunications Commission,” Funa added.
Funa believed that the amended guidelines would “(address) the emerging trend in the distribution of insurance products through alternative channels.”
Moving forward, Funa said the enhanced framework “will allow insurance providers to collaborate with telecommunications and mobile companies and to develop and introduce new and innovative integrated customer experience to the insuring public with the use of a mobile phone alone.”
Also, Funa said: “(I)nsurance companies may provide introduction of new features such as access to the features of different insurance products, payment breakdown and filing of insurance claims using a mobile phone, thus, allowing wide spread availability of insurance product in a more convenient manner while maintaining, if not an improved customer satisfaction.” /kga
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