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Product: Financial (Insurance)
Medium: Online - Company Website, Online - Social Media
ASAI Code 7th Edition: 2.4(c), 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, 4.10
The information provided on the advertisers’ website referred to the following:
“Protect your family with the guarantee of generational wealth.
Life Insurance Compare.
“Life insurance is one of the most oversold, yet overcharged products. Rather than use this opportunity to provide an extra level of service and give you the best rate possible banks and insurance agents use this opportunity to overcharge you on getting peace of mind and protecting your loved ones.
At LifeCompare, we make it easy to find life insurance policies that cover you and your loved ones without breaking the bank. Whether you’re looking to switch to cheaper policy or taking out life cover for the first time, our team is with you every step of the way.
We’re here to change the game.
Find affordable cover options to suit your budget and lifestyle”.
There was also an option provided to calculate the cost of obtaining life insurance. Advert 2:
A sponsored advert on social media with the headline “Irish parent? Listen up” included the following statement:
“YOU CAN GET LIFE INSURANCE FOR LESS THAN €10
Issue 1 – Advert 2:
The complainant challenged the claim in the sponsored social media advertisement that life insurance cover could be obtained for less than €10 as they did not consider that many people were eligible for a policy with that low a premium.
Issue 2 – Advert 1:
The complainant objected to the reference on the website that “Banks and insurance agents use this opportunity to overcharge you” as they considered that it was implying that consumers were being mis-sold insurance by banks and insurance agents, when such institutions employ qualified financial advisors.
The advertisers said they had removed all advertisements containing a reference to pricing on a policy, and/or any references to banks/brokers had been removed.
The Complaints Committee considered the detail of the complaint and noted the advertisers’ response. The Committee noted that the claim “Banks and insurance agents use this opportunity to overcharge you” was still on the website at the time of adjudication.
Issue 1 and 2:
The Committee noted the Code requirement that that “A marketing communication should not mislead, or be likely to mislead, by inaccuracy, ambiguity, exaggeration, omission or otherwise” (Section 4.1). They also noted that as per Section 4.10 of the Code that “Before offering a marketing communication for publication, advertisers should satisfy themselves that they will be able to provide documentary evidence to substantiate all claims that consumers are likely to regard as objective. Relevant evidence should be sent without delay if requested by the ASAI and should be adequate to support both detailed claims and the overall impression created by the marketing communication”.
In this instance as evidence had not been provided to substantiate the claim made that life insurance was available for less than €10 or that banks and insurance agents were overcharging for their services, and in the absence of a response to the detail of the complaints, the Committee considered that the advertisement was in breach of Sections 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, and 4.10 of the Code.
The advertising should not be published in the same format again unless adequate substantiation is provided for the claims made.