Life insurance

Cooling Off Period

The Hong Kong Federation of Insurers has in its Code of Practice, as part of its self-regulation measures for compliance by its life insurance members, what is called a “Cooling Off Period”, which allows clients a stipulated period of time to change their mind about a completed life insurance contract. During this period, the clients may cancel the policy with a full refund of the premium (subject to a market value adjustment in prescribed circumstances) with the following major provisions:

  1. The Cooling-off Period gives purchasers of new Life Insurance Policies a chance to re-think their decision to purchase a life insurance product, which is a long-term commitment.
  2. The Cooling-off Period is 21 days after the delivery of the policy or issue of a Notice to the policyholder or the policyholder's representative, whichever is earlier.
  3. The purpose of the Notice is to inform the policyholder of the availability of the policy and the expiry date of the Cooling-off Period. It reminds policyholders that they have the right to re-think their decision to purchase the life insurance product and to obtain a refund of the premium they paid if the policy is cancelled within the Cooling-off Period. Policyholders should contact the Customer Service Department of the insurer directly if they do not receive the policy contract within nine days from the date the Notice was issued.
  4. A statement called Announcement of Cooling-off Rights must be included on the application form immediately above the space for the signature.
  5. The policyholder must be reminded of the Cooling-off rights attached to the policy. This may be done by way of a letter from the insurer mailed direct to the policyholder, or a statement on the policy jacket or policy cover.
  6. Communication with the policyholder on this topic must be in the same language(s) used for other communication with the policyholder at the time of the policy issue.