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Wednesday, 24 October 1973
Page: 1388

Senator MULVIHILL (NEW SOUTH WALES) - I direct my question to the Minister representing the Treasurer. In view of the rising concern of the New South Wales trade union movement at the abnormal delay by the Phoenix Assurance Co. of Australia Ltd in processing workers compensation claims, will the Minister ascertain the possibility of the Commonwealth Actuary and Insurance Commissioner assisting the New South Wales Minister for Labour and Industry to probe the operations of this company?

Senator MURPHY -I will look into the matter. Great concern has been expressed in the Senate over a number of years about the operations of insurance companies. I suppose it is more distressing to persons that there should be any difficulty about insurance than in most other fields. One turns to the insurance company to be free of the insecurity which surrounds one and to get protection against what is unlikely to the individual but statistically inevitable- that some accident or incident will occur. That is what insurance is for. Failure of an insurance company strikes at the very basis of the protection that is sought. I can understand the honourable senator's concern and I will have the matter looked into to see whether it comes within the province of the Federal Government.

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