IRDAI has vide its circular dated 5th August, 2020 dispensed with the need for physical wet signatures on insurance forms on a temporary basis upto 31st December, 2020 due to the covid pandemic.
Instead they have put in place a system to obtain policy holders consent via OTP system with audit trail and maintaining copy of the e-consent with them.
1. Life Insurers are allowed to obtain the customer’s consent without requiring wet signature on the hard copy of the proposal form, for the business solicited by insurance agents / intermediaries subject to following:
a. The completed proposal form shall be sent to the prospect on his/ her registered e-mail ID or mobile number in the form of an e-mail or a message with a link as the case may be.
b. The prospect, if he / she wishes to consent to the proposal, may do so by clicking the confirmation link or by validating the OTP shared. The Insurer shall maintain verifiable, legally valid evidence for the proposer’s consent received for the fully completed proposal form. Further, the insurer shall not accept any payment of moneys towards proposal deposit till the receipt of consent of the proposer.
c. In all such cases, the agent / intermediary shall confirm that only the approved sales material has been used during the solicitation process. They shall also certify the authenticity of the e-mail ID and/or mobile number of the prospect.
2. The Insurers shall be responsible for:
a. Providing to the insurance agents / intermediaries approved digital sales material and ensuring that only such material is used while soliciting the business;
b. Authenticating the e-mail IDs / mobile numbers of the prospects by conducting de-duplication of such data and other such means;
c. Ensuring the suitability of the product being purchased;
d. Carrying out pre-issuance verification calls in respect of all such proposals.
This system is to be put in place only for pure risk products not involving any savings element.
Copy of IRDA circular can be found at https://www.irdai.gov.in/ADMINCMS/cms/Circulars_Layout.aspx?page=PageNo4210