Putting You in Charge: France’s Loi Hamon Makes Insurance Easier for Customers


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Putting You in Charge: France’s Loi Hamon Makes Insurance Easier for Customers

Consumers have more flexibility with this French law, making it easier to cancel insurance contracts, compare policies, switch providers and tackle bad practice in the industry. We talk to Richard, a senior advisor from CA Britline to learn how it works.

What is the Loi Hamon?

Giving the consumer more protection to ensure that the finance and insurance market is open, fair and more transparent is a key objective of France’s Loi Hamon.

Introduced in 2014, this impactful legislation is now making a difference for French consumers; allowing customers to compare and choose a wide range of different mortgage, personal loan, savings and insurance products more easily. Consumers can now cancel vehicle and house insurance contracts at any time.

Can you give an example of the problems faced by French consumers before the Loi Hamon?

Before the law came into effect, few French consumers were aware of many of their rights, for example in cancelling an insurance policy or transferring to a new provider. Automatic renewals were the norm; so, for example if you missed the cancellation date by just one day – it was too late. You had no choice but to stay with this insurer and keep your policy for another 12 months.

What areas does this consumer protection law cover?

The Loi Hamon protects consumers in many areas including buying products and services online, as well as insurance and financial services.

How does it work?

Let’s take a look at how it affects consumers wishing to change their insurance policy.

The most important point to understand is that once a customer has had a contract for at least 12 months, they can cancel at any time.

Now, anyone can cancel contracts with 30 days’ notice. Customers can choose to do it themselves or ask a new insurance company to do this on their behalf.

CA Britline policies also come with a 14-day “cooling-off” period. This allows the customer to cancel a new contract without explanation within two weeks.

Insurers treat cars slightly differently because vehicles must have insurance at all times. Once you have chosen your new car insurance company they will cancel your old policy for you.

Does the law include Top-Up or mutuelle health insurance policies?

The Loi Hamon excludes Top-Up health or mutuelle health insurance policies, but more recent legislation agreed upon in 2020 allows consumers to terminate their health insurance contract at any time after the first 12 months have expired.

If a customer wishes to switch their insurance to CA Britline, how do they do it?

It’s a relatively simple process following these three steps:

  • CA Britline will give the customer a quote for their insurance
  • If the customer says yes, they need to provide CA Britline with the name of the insurance company, the contract number and the name of the person who holds the contract (e.g. if it is a car insurance policy for their son)
  • CA Britline will do everything else! Customers can sign the authorisation form electronically or by paper. CA Britline will then advise the other insurer of the cancellation.

It’s crucial to get these details correct as otherwise the old company can refuse the cancellation.

CA Britline – the French bank that speaks your language

CA Britline’s friendly team of English-speaking advisors can help you with all of your daily banking and insurance needs in France. CA Britline provides documentation and other services to our customers in English. Read our customer stories and their experiences of banking with CA Britline.

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