Legal & General Assurance Society has announced that it is expanding its little t' teleunderwriting service, helping to reduce the time it will take to make an underwriting decision.

An exclusive deal has been signed with Primecare, a provider of out-of-hours healthcare, to replicate Legal & General’s teleunderwriting model on a larger scale. Primecare’s nurses and general physicians (GPs) will follow up on certain disclosures made during the application process and will speak confidentially to applicants over the phone about their medical history.

Primecare gives Legal & General the capacity to cover four more medical conditions through its telephone service immediately, with the promise of more to follow by the end of 2008.

Russ Whitworth, director of underwriting and claims at Legal & General, said: We see the benefit of using telephone-based interviewing to cover medical history because people feel comfortable talking with a medical professional over the phone. It allows us to get a clear picture of someone’s medical background, which reduces the need for us to request GP reports. This means that applications are processed more quickly and the likelihood of non-disclosure is reduced.