The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) today announced the disqualification of the former Managing Director of Rural & General Insurance Limited (R&G), Mr Aaron Stephenson, from being or acting as a Director or senior manager of a general insurer or authorised non-operating holding company, or a senior manager or agent of a foreign general insurer under the Insurance Act 1973 (the Act).
APRA found that Mr Stephenson, while Managing Director of the company formerly known as Rural & General Insurance Limited and currently known as A.C.N 000 007 492, was ultimately responsible and accountable for misconduct by that company, whereby it:
- failed to comply with the requirements of APRA’s Inspector;
- failed to comply with the conditions on its insurance authorisation;
- failed to keep proper records;
- breached APRA’s Prudential Standards under the Act; and
- provided misleading and incomplete information to APRA, the Inspector and its actuary and auditor, with the result that the company’s financial accounts and statutory returns were misleading.
APRA’s Deputy Chairman, Mr Ross Jones, said APRA will not tolerate conduct that results in the regulator and the market being misled about an insurer’s true financial position.
“APRA views this type of conduct as totally unacceptable and will do everything in its power to ensure that it does not impact on the best interests of policyholders.”
The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) is the prudential regulator of the financial services industry. It oversees banks, credit unions, building societies, general insurance and reinsurance companies, life insurance, friendly societies, and most members of the superannuation industry. APRA is funded largely by the industries that it supervises. It was established on 1 July 1998. APRA currently supervises institutions holding approximately $2 trillion in assets for 20 million Australian depositors, policyholders and superannuation fund members.