Sinn Féin has today published legislation that it says will ban dual pricing from the insurance market and empower the Central Bank, courts and Financial Ombudsman to enforce the new laws.

This comes after the Central Bank found that the majority of customers are paying significantly more than the expected cost of their policy, with some policyholders being overcharged by as much as 35% every year.

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Finance, Pearse Doherty said the Insurance (Restriction of Differential Pricing and Profiling) Bill 2020 is a "landmark moment" for the Irish insurance market.

"This legislation will ban dual pricing in the insurance market, reduce prices and increase fair competition in the market," he said.

"Dual pricing involves insurers using big data and complex pricing practices to target costumers who are less likely to shop around, before charging them artificially high premiums at renewal.

"This week's interim report by the Central Bank on the use of dual pricing by the insurance industry is a shocking indictment of the industry and how it price gouges its customers," he added.

The report shows that 2.5 million policyholders are paying a total of €187 million more than the actual cost of their policies as a result of dual pricing.

"In motor insurance, customers are being overcharged by as much as 25% a year, while in home insurance customers are being overcharged by as much as 35%," said Mr Doherty.