What route does an insurer use to access my medical records?

When applying for insurance, should an insurer require further information, the applicant will typically be asked to complete a form that provides their consent for the insurer to obtain relevant medical information from their GP. This is performed in accordance with the Access to Medical Reports Act 1988 (AMRA), which determines how insurers, and other third parties, should request medical information from GPs and must include the explicit consent of the applicant.

AMRA is applicable to Wales, Scotland and England. In Northern Ireland, a request is made under the Access to Personal Files and Medical Reports (Northern Ireland) Order 1991. These two acts give insurers the correct legal route to obtain medical information. More information can be found here.