Auto Insurance Docs, Longer Than Orwell’s Animal Farm- No Kidding


Auto insurance policies, terms and conditions documents are found to be longer than novels in a study by Fairer Finance. Here is a detailed report on the study.

Many of you will not take it seriously when you read the news headlines. However there is no advertising stunt in it. According to a research carried out by a consumer website, some people will take more time in going through the small imprints on some car insurer’s documents than reading a novel like George Orwell’s Animal Farm.

Interesting at the same time, true the research by Fairer Finance revealed that institutions like M&S Bank, Endsleigh, Esure and Sheila’s Wheels have framed and released documents of motor insurance policy which are over 30,000 words. This word count makes them longer than some of the novels like Animal Farm.
On the other side, research found that LV released the same policies within 6,901 words.

Studying the small print documents of some bank accounts, Fairer Finance found that the terms and conditions documentation of HSBC bank almost reach over 34,000 words. This makes them longer than the Mice and Men written by John Steinbeck by 5000 words.

When the study asked people about their views on reading the policy and terms and condition documents of auto insurance, 27% of the total 2,000 surveyed people claimed that they read them in full. Out of these only 17% accepted that they understand them.

The rest 73% people who do not read these small imprints blamed it on the length of these documents.

Fairer Finance’s founder and managing director, James Daley who also started the campaign, “spare us the small print” stated, “As a first step, we want all banks and insurers to take the legalese and jargon out of their small print, and to lay out the documents in a way that’s accessible and doesn’t turn off customers before they’ve started.

He added, “But in the long run, the industry needs to have a rethink about what information it needs to get across to its customers, and what’s the best way to do that.

“Too often, compliance managers and lawyers talk banks and insurers into throwing the kitchen sink into these documents, which reduces the chance of the small print ever being read.”

Speaking on better ways to communicate policies to customers, ABI head of conduct regulation, James King said, “Insurers are continuing to look at ways to improve their communications with customers and are working with the regulator to further improve the quality of disclosure documents.”

Study reveals that insurance providers need to rework on their documentation framing for better communication with the clients.