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Insurance, Genetic Information and the Future of Industry Self-Regulation in the UK

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It has often been claimed – without any substantial justification – that the UK Moratorium on Genetics and Insurance is a paradigm of good regulation because it is a credible and flexible response to a significant problem. This article considers the question more rigorously. It first considers the notions of credibility and flexibility more thoroughly, and challenges the orthodox position by arguing that the UK's moratorium is neither a credible nor a flexible response, at least by any reasonable definition of these criteria. The article further argues that to fully understand the implications of the moratorium it must be placed within the wider regulatory context. Insurance regulation is a complex mix of primary legislation and self-regulation with the balance tipped towards self-regulation. This article argues that this preference for self-regulation and the consequent unwillingness to reform the outdated primary legislation is contrary to the interests of consumers, leaving them with few rights or methods of enforcement.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5235/LIT.4.2.212

Publication date: December 1, 2012

More about this publication?
  • Stem cell research, cloning, GMOs ... How do regulations effect such emerging technologies? What impact do new technologies have on law? And can we rely on technology itself as a regulatory tool?

    The meeting of law and technology is rapidly becoming an increasingly significant (and controversial) topic. Law, Innovation and Technology is, however, the only journal to engage fully with it, setting an innovative and distinctive agenda for lawyers, ethicists and policy makers. Spanning ICTs, biotechnologies, nanotechnologies, neurotechnologies, robotics and AI, it offers a unique forum for the highest level of reflection on this essential area.

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