IRDA has issued the new guidelines on telemarketing and distance mode marketing, which will come into force from 1st October, 2011.
Guidelines on Training of tele-callers and Authorized Verifiers
1. Every tele-caller shall be trained at an institute accredited for pre-license training of agents by the Authority in the matters specified in point 2.
2. The training shall be for duration of not less than 25 hours as per syllabus to be prescribed by the Irda in matters related to regulations, disclosures, ethical conduct of business and specific instructions to be complied with while making the calls.
3. Authorized Verifiers shall fulfil the requirements as for specified persons of corporate agents such as qualification, 50-hour pre-license training at an accredited agents training institute and passing the examination. They would be certified as authorized verifiers by the designated person or the principal officer concerned subject to fulfilment of the specified qualifications/norms.
4. Insurers/Brokers, and corporate agents wherever applicable, shall maintain a register of all persons engaged by them or by the telemarketers hired by them for the purpose of lead generation/solicitation of insurance business. The register shall, apart from the name and address of the Telecaller/Authorised Verifier, also contain valid copies of his proof of identification and other relevant credentials. Insurers shall allot a distinctive code number to every telecaller/authorised verifier and record the same in a register maintained for the purpose.
Guidelines on Consent of the client
1. The hours during which calls are made shall be in accordance with orders issued by Trai/DoT from time to time. In all instances where a policy is issued without obtaining a proposal in physical form, insurers should provide a verbal transcript of the voice/electronic record of the queries raised and answers on the basis of which the policy has been underwritten, along with the policy bond, the Irda order further said.
2. No inconvenience, nuisance or harm shall be caused to the clients in the course of solicitation or thereafter. Full disclosures shall be made to the clients under all modes of distance marketing and the requirements of confidentiality, privacy and non-disclosure shall be complied with.
Guidelines on Premium Ceilings in case of sale of ULIPs and prohibition of sale of Universal Life Products over telephonic mode
1. Also, insurers shall not solicit Ulips of non-single premium type for annualized premiums exceeding Rs50,000 over telephonic mode (voice as well as SMS).
2. Single premium Ulips shall not be solicited for a premium of more than Rs1, 00,000 over telephonic mode.
3. No variable insurance product shall be solicited or sold over distance marketing mode.
Guidelines on Post-Solicitation Process
The records pertaining to every call made and SMS sent by a Telemarketer/Corporate Agent/Broker that materializes into a policy shall be transferred to the insurer’s location within 30 days of conclusion of sale. In case of telephone calls, the records transferred shall be the recordings of the entire conversation.
Guidelines on Verification Process
1. Insurers/brokers shall monitor the calls live by arranging for listening to at least 1% of the calls as they happen.
2. Insurers shall verify at least 3% of calls leading to sales for compliance with guidelines by engaging a team of dedicated employees to listen to the call recordings.
3. The observations made in the course of verification should be preserved in a retrievable form for a period of not less than three years.