The MFSA has provided an informational update as a result of the COVID-19 which may affect consumers of insurance products.
The MFSA has noted that any changes which may have been made to the terms and conditions relating to an insurance policy issued before the outbreak of COVID-19, cannot apply retrospectively or mid-term during the policy period. However, it has been noted that new policies which have been issued may include amendments and/or exclusions which take into consideration the risks arising due to COVID-19. The MFSA has also stated that policyholders may discover changes in their circumstances because of the outbreak of COVID-19, which may affect current insurance policies such as home contents or a travel policy. In view of this, it has been suggested that policyholders should seek to contact their respective insurance company to discuss these changes.
The MFSA notes that travel insurance policies issued prior to the COVID-19 outbreak may not have any exclusions in relation to COVID-19. However, it has been suggested that, in the future, should consumers purchase a travel insurance policy, they are to confirm the type of coverage which is being offered in respect of COVID-19 with their insurance company. Furthermore, it has been noted that policyholders may also have to consider the restrictions imposed by the Government of Malta for travelling as well as any mandatory conditions and/or restrictions which may have been imposed by the country being visited.
The MFSA has stated that under certain circumstances, active policies which offer health insurance coverage may allow for a claim arising due to COVID-19 insofar as the treatment falls within the terms and conditions of the policy.
The MFSA has also recommended that holders of home insurance policies contact their respective insurance companies to seek confirmation that their policy covers any changes which may have occurred due to the outbreak of COVID-19, such as the use of a home as a workplace.
Furthermore, it has been noted by the MFSA that some insurance companies are considering or have stopped selling certain types of insurance policies to customers. In this regard, the MFSA has noted that it is unable to prevent such action.
For more information on these updates, please check the link below:
Information for Consumers: Coverage under Insurance Policies in the context of COVID-19
This document does not purport to give legal, financial or tax advice. Should you require further information or legal assistance, please do not hesitate to contact Dr. Veronica Grixti and Dr. Zachary Galea