Women to Pay Same Insurance Premium as Men!
A recent case from the European Court of Justice means that from December 21st 2012 that insurers cannot take gender into account as a risk factor when setting premiums and payouts in respect of annuities, retirement savings and accident cover.
The European Court of Justice considered that using “the gender of the insured individual into account is a risk factor in insurance contracts constitutes discrimination” contrary to article 4(1) and 5(1) of the EU Directive 2004/113/EC which implements the principal of equal treatment between men and women in the access to and supply of goods and services. Hence for example insurance companies, as currently is the case, will not be able to offer lesser premiums to women as opposed to men.
The European Court of Justice has ruled that from December 21st 2012 insurers will not be allowed to take gender into account as a risk factor for setting premiums. Therefore from that date, a rule providing for unisex premiums and benefits will come into effect. Before 21st December 2012 there is a transitional period which will allow EU Member States to decide what action to take on domestic laws and give companies a chance to adjust and to find ways to mitigate the potentially very substantial knock-on effects
Daven Naghen, head of our Employment Team commented as follows:-
“This decision from the European Court of Justice comes as little surprise. In essence this country has until 21st December 2012 to implement the ruling. It will be interesting to see what if any action is taken by insurance companies between now and the implementation date. I would suspect that as of 21st December 2012 at the very latest that premiums for women will generally increase, and whether there is any knock-on increase for men remains to be seen.
This ruling also affects many insured benefits provided by employers such as life assurance and private medical cover. This may well lead to a substantial increase in the level of pensions paid to women for example, although the pension contributions payable by women may also increase substantially.”
We at Maples Solicitors LLP will keep you up to date with any developments in respect of this ruling. If currently you do require advice in respect of this ruling, or any other issue relating to discrimination then please do not hesitate to contact Daven on 01775 722261 or email Daven at firstname.lastname@example.org or write to Daven at 23 New Road, Spalding, Lincolnshire PE11 1DH.