Consumers will soon be able to cancel French insurance contracts in just a few clicks.
A new decree is set to come into force from June 1 that will mean:
Insurance contracts must be cancellable online.
The online cancellation process should be as simple as possible, with a dedicated, easy-to-use function. This should take the form of a simple page and a ‘cancel’ button, or similar.
Cancellation can take place online even if you did not buy the policy online or pay for it electronically - the insurance firm, however, must be offering online contracts on the day the person wishes to cancel
‘Simplify people’s lives’
The goal is to make it easier for consumers to change insurers, in a bid to promote competition and help to limit the cost of insurance.
It comes as part of the government’s goal to boost public spending power and is said to be especially important as inflation is high.
Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire said: “Cancellation in three clicks is a concrete action to simplify people’s lives and support their purchasing power.”
‘Three clicks’: The step-by-step
The minister is aiming for the cancellation process to be as easy as possible:
After clicking on a ‘cancel your contract’ button, the subscriber will likely be asked to enter the following:
Their surname and first name or company name
The contract reference number and risk covered
The reason for cancellation, to be chosen from a list including ‘cancellation on expiry’ and ‘other’
The date of the event giving rise to the cancellation (such as ‘expiry date’).
The client will then be taken to a page summarising the information provided, to check it and, if necessary, make changes.
Finally, they will have to confirm their cancellation request by activating a button with the words ‘confirm my cancellation request’ or similar unambiguous wording.
Read more: Insurance in France: Contracts will soon be cancellable at any time
It comes after another new law on cancelling contracts is set to come into force from July 1.
What is the new rule?
From July 1, 2023, people will be able to end almost all insurance contracts at any time – as long as one year has passed since the policy began.
From the new date, insurance providers will need to inform policyholders of the new premium amount for the year and remind them that they can cancel at any time.
All contracts still have a 14-day cooling-off period, during which the policyholder can cancel.
The finance sector committee le Comité consultatif du secteur financier (CCSF) unanimously adopted the law change in May last year, after several meetings from November 2021 to April 2022.
It said that the aim is to “simplify legislation and information that must be given to policyholders”.
At the time, the CCSF said: “Policyholders often get lost in the various cases of cancellation and do not understand under what conditions, and when, they can cancel their insurance contracts.”
What contracts will it apply to?
The new rule will now be allowed for pet insurance, legal protection insurance l'assurance protection juridique, and personal accident insurance (‘garanties d’accidents de la vie’ (GAV)).
Cancellation after the first year is already allowed for multi-risk home insurance, car insurance, and health insurance.
Which contracts will it not apply to?
It will not apply to:
Travel insurance contracts that last less than one month
Disability or life insurance
Long-term care insurance
Seasonal contracts (school contracts, hunting contracts)
Contracts for pleasure boating or for any motorised or non-motorised personal transport equipment.
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