A parliamentary inquiry into the $44 billion life insurance industry is likely to dredge up a range of issues in a sector that has been dogged with controversy for years, including engaging in unethical practices to avoid paying claims.
The life insurance inquiry that will kick off in Melbourne on Wednesday follows a joint Fairfax Media-Four Corners investigation into Commonwealth Bank's life insurance arm CommInsure, then a separate Fairfax investigation showing how a number of super fund trustees were renegotiating life insurance contracts on behalf of members that resulted in some of them being little better than junk insurance.
It is one of a number of inquiries taking place into the financial service sector after a string of scandals laid bare deep problems.
It is why a royal commission makes so much sense, to look at the issues holistically.
The inquiry into life insurance was driven by Senator John Williams, after hearing first-hand the treatment of CommInsure customer James Kessel, who had a severe heart attack in 2014 but his policy was rejected on the basis his troponin levels weren't high enough.
What Kessel didn't know at the time was the medical definition relied on to deny his claim was a decade out of date.
What made it worse was that days before CommInsure rejected Kessel's heart attack claim, the life insurer discussed it at an internal committee meeting that said, "we believe that by declining this claim based on a now unobtainable threshold, CommInsure would not be acting in utmost good faith".
Two years later, when his story was reported in the media, CommInsure, which is owned by CBA, agreed to pay him out and update its medical definitions. Oddly, it only backdated them two years instead of going back a decade.
CommInsure isn't the only life insurer caught treating its customers badly.
It is why ASIC, in its submission, called for more regulatory and legislative powers "to address poor practices in the life insurance sector". It said there were limitations in relation to claims handling, the duty of utmost good faith, the upgrading of policy definitions, and the application of unfair contract term provisions to insurance.
In a separate submission APRA said it had concerns that the group insurance market had "fallen short of appropriate practice in respect of risk management and governance, causing APRA to respond with heightened intensity of supervision".
APRA listed a series of poor industry practices including "basic disablement and trauma definitions that are open to interpretation (even if they have worked effectively in the past) because of the broad way they are worded; disablement and trauma definitions that cover ailments that are inherently difficult to assess with confidence, or that are prone to obsolescence; complex products that are difficult to understand and to administer; and inadequate resourcing or skills for sound claims management (including to cater for changing social attitudes/behaviour and market conditions)".
It is quite a list. When coupled with the antiquated systems that continue to plague the sector, and hefty commissions paid by advisers to flog the products, it paints a picture of an industry in dire need of reform.
The industry has developed a code of conduct, but it has a long way to go.
Other areas that are likely to attract a lot of heat include the role of life insurance in super funds.
Under the current law, millions of Australians each year are passively put into life insurance policies, paying $5.9 billion a year in premiums, which cover them for income protection and lump sum payouts on death or total and permanent disability (TPD) through "group" deals struck between insurers and super funds.
It is known as "opt-out", which means premiums are automatically deducted unless the member specifically opts out.
But not everyone agrees.
In its submission, Clearview recommends that group insurance be "opt in" instead of the current "opt out" model on the basis that it is a "highly inefficient" system. It argues that the system gives people a false sense of security.
The role of life insurance is a highly contentious issue that needs to be debated.
In the past couple of years a number of super funds have renegotiated life insurance contracts with insurers at a time when premiums are surging up to 200 per cent. To keep the premiums down, they have traded away some of their members rights.
John Berrill, a principal with Berrill & Watson Lawyers, describes them as "hidden nasties" and believes they have rendered some of the policies virtually junk.
The clock is ticking for reform.