Irish Life gets award for plain talking

IRISH Life has won a major international award as the company Best at Plain English in 2009.

This accolade is given by the Plain English Campaign, which over the past 30 years has lobbied governments and business to remove jargon and provide clear and honest information.

The Dublin Airport Authority won a Golden Bull Award, which is the category for the year’s ‘best’ example of gobbledygook that formed part of a DAA contractor’s agreement.

Chrissie Maher, founder of the Plain English Campaign said Irish Life’s clarity proved that the company is committed to its customers. She said she was very proud of the firm’s achievement.

“In my 40 years of campaigning, Irish Life has stood out for giving clear, honest and straightforward information to their customers.

“I have seen Irish Life’s determination to get it right and the struggles to find a balance between what the legal advisors say and what customers want and need from a service they can understand and trust. I believe Irish Life have managed to balance both sides very well. They have set the standard for all organisations and truly deserve this special award,” she said.

In the current environment she said lack of jargon in the financial services industry was particularly important. She said she knew of people evicted from their homes because they had not fully understood the terms and conditions of the mortgage agreements they had signed.

In contrast, DAA was criticised for the following as a case of how to bury all sense of meaning: “Neither the execution and delivery by the consultant of this agreement nor the consummation by it of any of the transactions contemplated hereby, requires, with respect to it, the consent or approval of the giving of notice to, the registration with, the recording or filing of any document with, or the taking of any other action in respect of any government authority, except such as are not yet required (as to which it has no reason to believe that the same will not be readily obtainable in the ordinary course of business upon due application therefore) or which have been duly obtained and are in full force and effect.”


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