More than 1 million Aussies aged 60 and over could be sitting on a cash refund worth thousands, thanks to dodgy insurance policies that are now being refunded.
According to insurance refund experts Claimo, a $10 billion ‘junk insurance’ refund pool has been set aside by the big banks and lenders.
Junk Insurance refers to add-on insurance policies that are essentially useless to the consumer it was sold to.
“If you’ve ever had a credit card, taken out a loan or obtained finance to buy a car – you’re likely to have unknowingly paid for junk insurance and eligible for a refund,” Claimo director Nathan Mortlock said.
“Shamefully, we’ve found some of these insurances have been charged as a compounding percentage, which over time, has cost consumers thousands, even up to tens of thousands of dollars.”
Claimo said the average refund was around $3,400 with one client receiving $70,000.
“What this means is there could be millions in junk insurance refunds available for our over-60s alone – money which could help with everyday bills, pay down any debt or even afford a holiday,” Mortlock said.
“We know a million or so seniors are owed money, yet only a few thousand have come forward to claim their refunds.
“If you’re over 60 and had loans during your lifetime, you are very likely to be owed money.”
Mortlock said any loan taken out prior to 2018 is worth investigating and anyone who took out a loan in the 1990s should definitely look into it.
“The 90s were notorious for attaching junk insurance to loans,” Mortlock said.
The Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Service Industry in 2019 recognised the misleading practice, directing the banks to contribute to a $10 billion refund pool.
“Shockingly, most victims don’t even know they have paid for junk insurance, or could be owed a refund,” Mortlock said.
“Even if you had a loan with a respectable bank or lender – you should still check.”
How to check if you may be eligible for a refund:
Here are the three main things you should look at:
Your credit card statements and loan contracts
The words “credit card insurance”, “consumer credit insurance” or “loan protection” (it may appear on or near the “interest changes” line)
If you find these references, or similar, chances are you’ve been charged junk insurance and could be entitled to a refund.