Age 'should be considered by insurers'

Insurance providers should be able to take age into account when calculating premiums, a trade organisation has insisted.

If the government's new Equalities Bill becomes law, it will be illegal for a person to be discriminated against on the basis of their age.

However, the Association of British Insurers (ABI) believes age is one of the key factors behind working out how much people should pay on their insurance.

This means that cover providers could fall foul of the law if there is a disparity between the amount paid by different age groups.

However, ABI spokesperson Malcolm Tarling insisted that insurance premiums are based on risk assessments, which means older people are not always liable to pay the highest amounts.

For example, he said younger drivers are statistically more likely to be involved in an expensive accident, and therefore pay more on their car insurance.

He added that older people tend to get cheaper household insurance, as they are often at home longer, which means the burglary risk is reduced.

"All we are saying is that age is relevant and insurers should be able to continue to use it," Mr Tarling said.

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