oral signature of a contract now prohibited for brokers

As part of the brokerage reform which comes into force on April 1, it will no longer be possible to sign a contract directly during the telephone conversation. A reflection period of 24 hours is now guaranteed and the signature must be handwritten or electronic.

A yes simply pronounced during the telephone conversation will no longer be sufficient for the broker to validate an insurance contract. This is the great advance of new rules, resulting from the 2021 brokerage reform, which come into force this Friday, April 1, welcomes the lawyer of the consumer defense association Consumption, Housing, Living Environment (CLCV), Olivier Gayraud. Nobody knew about this rule and we only discovered its existence after being fooled by the practices of unscrupulous brokers, he continues, specifying that only a few tarnish the image of the whole profession. Between pure scams and abusive canvassing, I welcome the implementation of this reform, insists Bruno Le Maire, the Minister of the Economy, in a press release.

But the CLCV, like other consumer associations, regrets that the text is only one more patch, as was the case for abuses related to energy renovation. The problem of cold calling continues. The public authorities do not seem to go far enough but justify their targeted actions by defending jobs. waiting for more, here’s what’s changing for customers.

An agreement prior to the continuation of the exchange

The canvasser (broker, representative or general insurance agent) must collect from the beginning of the conversation the agreement of the consumerafter having presented its activity and its commercial approach, to continue the telephone call. If this is not the case, he must hang up and no longer contact this interlocutor. If the latter, during the conversation, explicitly expresses his wish to interrupt the exchange, the canvasser must do so without delay.

The oral and immediate agreement, it’s over

We observed an increase of eight points of claims related to canvassing between 2020 and 2021, 80% of them report a problem of consent to the contractexplains Arielle Dalens, director of controls of commercial practices at the Prudential Control and Resolution Authority (ACPR), the policeman of the sector, in the columns of the Parisian. The CLCV has been campaigning for a long time for the regulations to change so that a simple verbal agreement no longer constitutes acceptance and that only its handwritten or electronic signature binds the consumer.

The text of the law prohibits obtaining an oral signature, in particular via a code rpt by the client because the latter is not always aware of signing a contract, insists Olivier Gayraud. Brokers will need to obtain a handwritten or electronic signature. Furthermore, before concluding a distance contract, the canvasser must respect a deadline of 24 hoursto ensure that the potential customer has been able to find out about the contract he is about to sign and take the necessary time to step back.

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In the crowd of the agreement, the insurer must provide all the documents in writing or electronically: guarantees, effective date, right of renunciation, conditions of termination.

One contract drives out the other

If the offer concerns a risk that is already covered, the canvasser must ensure that the subscriber can cancel his current contract so as not to be covered twice for the same risk.

Calls recorded and kept for 2 years

Telephone conversations leading to the signing of a contract must be kept for two years from the date of agreement. The customer may request to receive a copy of the recording in the event of a dispute. If the client refuses registration, the exchange must be terminated. If the customer does not follow up, the recording must be destroyed.

How to choose the right insurance?

To avoid any unpleasant surprises, the CLCV recommends following these steps:

  • Identify your insurance needs;
  • Gather the necessary documents;
  • Request and consult the information sheet on prices and guarantees;
  • Request a copy of the draft contract or a detailed information notice;
  • Read these documents and compare with your current contracts and proposals from other insurers.

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