CommInsure

Owned by the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (Commbank), Comminsure is one of Australia’s largest providers of financial services, including Life Cover, TPD Insurance, Trauma Insurance, Income Protection and Business Overheads Insurance.

Published October 10, 2016

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CommInsure sold to AIA

The Commonwealth Bank Group (CBA) has sold its insurance arm, CommInsure, to Hong Kong life insurer AIA. CommInsure and AIA Australia now operate as one entity.

From 31 March 2020, CommInsure Protection products will no longer accept new business. However, current CommInsure Protection policies will remain as is, and customers can contact AIA for increases, decreases, changes to beneficiaries or policy ownership.

About CommInsure

CommInsure is the insurance arm of the Commonwealth Bank Group (CBA) and offers a range of life insurance and personal investment products.

For over 140 years, CommInsure has protected the lifestyles of millions of Australians through innovative and competitive life insurance and income protection products . As one of Australia’s leading life insurers, CommInsure aims to provide more Australians with cover by improving the accessibility and availability of personal risk insurance.

Headquartered in Sydney, CommInsure is a registered business of The Colonial Mutual Life Assurance Society Limited (CMLA) which has a very strong Standard & Poor’s AA Credit rating.

About The CBA Group

The Common Wealth Bank of Australia (CBA) is one of the most recognised brands in Australian financial services industry and provides a variety of financial services, including:

Key Statistics

In 2014, CommInsure’s total claims pay-out equalled $839.1 million, and as of June 2016 they had an annual inforce premium of $2,500 million making them one of the largest life insurers in the Australian market. They have a number of protection products including CommInsure Protection, Simple Life and provide protection solutions to a number of members of super funds

CBA has a large client base with over 4.6 million active online customers, supported by 52,000 people working at Commonwealth Bank Group (September 2016).

As of 30 June 2016, the CBA Group has $933,078 million in assets, they also have a treaty reinsurance agreement with RGA, reinforcing their strong financial standing.

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History of CommInsure

CommInsure has a longstanding history, originating back in 1911 when the Common Wealth Bank of Australia was founded and was the first bank to receive a Federal Government guarantee, empowering them to conduct both savings and general (trading) bank business.

In 1916 the CBA moved their headquarters from Melbourne to Sydney. Four years later, in 1920, the Common Wealth Bank merged with the state savings bank of Queensland and expanded their retail operations.

During 1958 to 1959 there was some controversy concerning CBA’s dual responsibility as the central bank, on one side and a commercial bank on the other. As a result, the government split the bank in two, with the Commonwealth Bank Corporation (CBC) retaining the commercial functions.

In 1988, the Commonwealth Bank entered the managed investment and life insurance division by forming the Colonial First State Wealth Management group. Then, between 1991 and 1996 the Australian government fully privatised the Commonwealth Bank.

The Common Wealth Bank acquired the Colonial Group of companies in the year 2000, granting them a lead into life insurance and property position in the market.

In 2002, CommInsure was created within the CBA, as a specialist insurance division, with the goal of combining all Australian insurance activities.

CommInsure FAQ

  • Who owns CommInsure?

    The life insurance company is now wholly owned by Hong Kong life insurer AIA. Before, CommInsure was the specialist insurance division of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA).
  • How does AIA purchasing CommInsure affect my policy?

    The Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) has sold its life insurance arm, CommInsure Life, to the insurance specialist AIA Group Ltd. This enables AIA to further increase their focus on driving customer value.

    From 31 March 2020, CommInsure life cover products will no longer be available to new customers. Current CommInsure customers will keep their policies and existing benefits. AIA is now the insurer providing you with your policy benefits and not CBA.
  • Will my CommInsure application still be accepted?

    If you submitted an online quote and application for new business before 31 March 2020, it will be honoured. However, if you applied for a policy offline (paper applications), it would need to have been signed and dated before 31 March 2020, and received by 30 April 2020, to be honoured.
  • I heard about CommInsure on a recent 4 Corners show. As a policyholder, should I be concerned?

    The insurance industry is a complex one. In May 2016, 4 Corners aired an investigation into CommInsure and their treatment of insurance claims which also highlighted the need for customers to become informed about their coverage, ensuring the policy meets their requirements and that they must take active steps to review their polices on an ongoing basis.

    Here are 3 Tips to help you understand if your existing CommInsure policy meets your needs:
    1. Confirm what exactly you are covered for, and what you are not covered for.
    2. Read your PDS and check the terms and conditions of your policy to make sure it’s meet your requirements.
    3. If you remain uncertain, we would recommend you talk to a specialist to answer any questions or concerns.
  • Does CommInsure offer built in trauma reinstatement?

    Yes, in the CommInsure Protection policy they provide this feature built in. The trauma reinstatement commences 12 months after a claim has been made.

    However, it’s important to note that if trauma cover is reinstated, the exclusions and loadings which applied to your original cover, will also apply to the reinstated cover and that the original category of the traumatic event that you were originally paid out for will be excluded from the reinstated cover.
  • Do they offer accident only products?

  • What are the limits of their redundancy cover?

    Redundancy cover is only available under the CommInsure Income Care and Income Care Plus. However you must have a CBA group loan, and you must be unemployed for over 60 consecutive days. The benefit provided is very limited and has a number of eligibility criteria you should be aware of before taking out a policy for this feature alone.
  • Do they offer income protection to pilots?

    CommInsure offers a specific Income Protection, called Aviation Cover, for pilots, flight engineers and flight attendants. The cover is designed to replace up to 75% of your income should you suffer sickness or injury and are unable to work. The cover can be optimised for specific needs.

    For pilots or flight engineers to be eligible they need to have the following:
    1. Employed by a commercial airline that operates a fare paying passenger service in Australia
    2. They need to be Australian citizens and permanently living in Australia
    3. Have a valid Australian Airline Transport Licence or Australian Flight Engineer Licence
    4. Current copies of any medical examinations or reports such as a Civil Aviation Safety Authority.
    If you are a pilot, flight engineer of flight attendant and would like more information regarding protecting your income with income protection cover please contact us.

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