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AFCA forces $185 million in payouts

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Insurers and other financial services providers returned about $185 million to consumers in disputes overseen by the Australian Financial Complaints Authority in its first year of operation.

Disputes to AFCA rose 40% to 73,272 in the 12-month period to October from a year earlier when its predecessors handled about 52,232 cases.

AFCA started operating in November last year as the financial services dispute resolution one-stop shop, replacing the Financial Ombudsman Service, Credit and Investments Ombudsman and the Superannuation Complaints Tribunal.

The compensation breakdown for general insurance disputes is not yet available.

However, general insurance made up 22% of overall complaints received by product line, according to data provided to

Only credit products had a bigger share on 44%.