The gobbledygook and jargon that plagues most insurance policies has long confused consumers. In fact, you need at least an A-Level to understand them according to a recent study from the University of Nottingham.
But By Miles, the company behind the UK’s first real-time pay-per-mile car insurance policy, has just bucked the trend, becoming the first insurance company to receive a Plain English Award in 30 years, for its ‘Your Policy Handbook’.
The awards, which have run annually since 1980, recognise organisations and individuals who have genuinely made an effort to present themselves using clear and concise English.
Insurance documents are notoriously difficult to decipher, with people struggling to understand their legalese and industry jargon, ranging from ‘Acts of God’ to ‘Telematics’.
This miscomprehension matters: consumers may invalidate their insurance at the time of signing, unwittingly agree to hidden charges, or fail to get what they’re owed at the point of claim.
To create a jargon-free policy handbook, By Miles used consumer testing to ensure the draft policy was clearly written. Once completed, they even road-tested it on the eight-year-old niece of one the company founders. She could easily understand the gist of the language.
By Miles co-founder and CEO, James Blackham, said, “When we launched By Miles we wanted to create a fairer and clearer car insurance policy. That’s why we created the UK’s first pay-by-mile car insurance product. If you drive less, you actually pay less. It’s simple, transparent and it makes sense.
“As part of this, we also wanted to radically improve the way policies are written so we poured a lot of energy into getting this right. There is still far too much confusion in insurance – customers deserve clarity and we’re proud to be doing our bit.”
Lee Monks from The Plain English Campaign said, “For many years we’ve tried in vain to get those in the financial services profession to ditch impenetrable language, so it’s a pleasure to finally celebrate this progress.”
‘Your policy handbook’ from By Miles is well written, designed and laid out. It does an excellent job of clearing up a lot of potentially mystifying information. It’s focussed on the reader. It does what it’s supposed to, and it goes to great lengths to keep readers clearly informed on where they stand and what they’re getting. By Miles are richly deserving recipients of our Plain English Award for 2018.”