Insurance company Youi fined $320k

Insurance company Youi has been fined $320,000 dollars for misleading sales techniques.

The sentence was imposed at the Auckland District Court on Thursday morning.

The Commerce Commission filed 15 charges against Youi earlier this year, saying the company "employed misleading sales techniques" in order to sell policies to customers who only wanted a quote.

The breaches of the Fair Trading Act took place between July 2014 and February 2016.

The company:

  • Made false and misleading representations about consumers' ability to obtain a quote online
  • Made misleading statements during sales calls with consumers
  • Made them supply bank or credit card details to get a policy quote, and demanded payment or debited bank accounts without express permission from the consumer
  • Sent invoices to consumers in relation to unsolicited insurance policies that failed to specify that they could opt out.

Youi cooperated with the investigation, and pleaded guilty to all the charges.

The company blamed the "actions of employees or processes". 

It has since made changes to its website content and disclosures in an attempt to "improve clarity, compliance and alignment with customer expectations".

"From the point the issues were brought to our attention we cooperated fully with the commission and speedily implemented changes to our business practices that had fallen short of customer expectations, service standards and legal requirements," chief executive Danie Matthee said in August.

"We unreservedly apologised to all affected customers."

In October, Youi was fined $100,000 by the Insurance Council - the maximum it could impose.

The home, contents and vehicle insurer was founded in June 2013.

Newshub.

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