The advantages of dealing with a broker vs going direct to an insurer
Many people become clients of www.officeinsurance.com.au after previously dealing directly with an insurance company, and being on the receiving end of poor treatment by them. In this case, MW had purchased a car and his bank had arranged insurance cover for it via a large insurer. The car was subsequently involved in an accident and MW was at fault. The insurer declined the claim on the basis of non-disclosure, and also cancelled the insurance. The bank (acting as an agent of the insurer) would not assist with the claim. Repair costs exceeded $10,000 for MW’s car and $15,000 for the other vehicle, meaning that MW was facing expenses of $25,000.
MW approached www.officeinsurance.com.au and we advised that the insurer was not entitled to deny the claim nor to cancel the insurance. We negotiated with the insurer on MW’s behalf. The claim was paid in full and his insurance was re-instated.
This case illustrates that an Insurance Agent is only responsible to the insurer and is unable to help with a claim. On the other hand, an Insurance Broker such as www.officeinsurance.com.au acts in the sole interests of clients and can help to negotiate a claim on a client’s behalf. Contact us to find out how you will benefit by arranging your office insurance through us.
Insider knowledge about policy detail delivered a successful claim
SH made the mistake of running against the pedestrian “Don’t Walk” sign across the Pacific Highway at North Sydney. It was raining at the time and the next thing he knew he was awoken from an induced coma in hospital many days later. The insurer of the car that hit him sued SH for the $8,000 repair bill to the car. At the time of the accident, SH was living with his parents in their home. He engaged a solicitor to handle the workers’ compensation aspect of his injuries and they also negotiated a position with the insurer and their claim for $8,000.
SH did not have the money to pay and he was bemoaning this point to a friend who recommended that he speak with www.officeinsurance.com.au. SH met with our advisers and discussed the claim and issues. We asked where SH was living at the time of the accident. SH was sceptical that this had anything to do with the case, but replied that he had been living with his parents for some years.
On our advice, SH telephoned his father to ask if he had home and contents insurance. Fortunately, he did. We then explained that under the public liability section of the home and contents policy, SH was a deemed named insured and was therefore entitled to benefits under the public liability section relating to damage to property belonging to other people. SH’s father’s insurance company subsequently accepted the claim and paid the other insurer the $8,000 meaning that SH was not out of pocket. Contact us to find out how you will benefit by arranging your office insurance through us.
A better outcome as a result of using a broker
One night, GN’s car was broken into whilst parked outside her home in inner Sydney. A pair of suit pants belonging to her husband was stolen along with other personal items. Initially, the insurer, through their assessor, would only pay for the cost of the pants and not for a new suit. The coat was useless on its own. On behalf of GN, we successfully made representations to the insurer that the suit pants formed part of an outfit and should therefore be regarded as a single item. The insurer subsequently agreed and paid for a new suit. By drawing on our skills and experience, GN was able to fully recover the costs of the loss she had suffered. Contact us to find out how you will benefit by arranging your office insurance through us.
A broker can help you fight a declined claim
BK, a retired veteran of the Kokoda Trail campaign had his motor boat cruiser insured directly with a well known insurer, chosen primarily because he perceived their premiums to be cheaper. Whilst navigating a tight channel, he hit a submerged object damaging the boat shaft and propellers. The repairs to the boat should have cost about $8,000 however they subsequently blew-out to in excess of $36,000. BK’s insurer abandoned the claim and would only pay $12,000 towards the cost of repairs. BK was referred to www.officeinsurance.com.au and our advisers discussed BK’s options with him.
We suggested drawing on the services of the Financial Ombudsman Service, who required that the claim initially be referred to the insurer’s internal dispute resolution facility. This was done and the insurer tenaciously stuck to their guns. The Financial Ombudsman Service then considered the claim and they too agreed with the insurer and rejected BK’s claim.
We believed that the decisions were wrong and argued that the matter should be litigated. With great misgivings, BK agreed and endured the harrowing court proceedings. The outcome was that judgment was entered in BK’s favour for the full outstanding claim, and all legal costs plus interest. This case demonstrates the difference between dealing directly with an insurer (who is motivated to minimise the claim entitlement) and having an experienced broker on your side who can help you argue an unjustified denial of claim. Contact us to find out how you will benefit by arranging your office insurance through us.
Loyalty to an insurer has no value
For eighteen continuous years, CN held her home and motor vehicle insurance directly with a well known insurer. A minor motor vehicle accident caused damage to her portable TOM TOM navigational aid and laptop computer. The claim totalled $1,500. The insurer, after a lengthy investigation, declined CN’s claim on the basis of fraud and also cancelled mid-term, all of her insurances.
CN was horrified that as a loyal customer of the insurer for eighteen years she would be treated in this way, let alone be accused of fraud. CN sought professional advice and was recommended to www.officeinsurance.com.au. A dispute was lodged with the insurer’s internal dispute resolution service and the insurance company stubbornly maintained its stance. We then assisted CN in making a submission to the Financial Ombudsman Service for their consideration. The behaviour of the insurer during this process was appalling and after a stressful five months the Ombudsman handed down his decision in CN’s favour. This case illustrates that loyalty to an insurance company can mean nothing when it comes to claim time. It also underscores the value of having a skilled insurance broker on your side who is prepared to go to bat for you. Contact us to find out how you will benefit by arranging your office insurance through us.
An experienced insurance broker understands the fine detail
Michael M purchased a new motorcycle and arranged insurance for it through the motorcycle dealer who was acting as an agent to the insurer. He subsequently attended a riding course hosted by the brand of motorcycles, held at their centre within Sydney. During the course Michael fell off his bike at a relatively low speed, causing $8,000 worth of damage to the bike. Michael’s insurer declined the claim under a policy exclusion which stated that no claim would be admitted if the bike was damaged whilst it was being ‘used on a race track, speedway track or course’. The insurer claimed that the training facility was a course and that also the word ‘course’ also meant an ‘educational course’.
Michael was recommended to www.officeinsurance.com.au, to determine whether or not the insurer had made a correct interpretation. We disagreed with the insurer and presented Michael’s case to the insurer’s internal dispute resolution department. Still the insurer declined the claim. On Michael’s behalf, Brock prepared a submission to the Financial Ombudsman Service where the insurer’s decision was overturned and Michael’s claim was paid in full. This case demonstrates the extra value an experienced insurance broker offers by their knowledge and understanding of policy wordings.
Contact us today to find out how you can benefit from the knowledge and insight that an experienced and skilled insurance broker offers.
When it comes to choosing office insurance, there are really just two paths to take. One is to go direct to the insurance company and the other is to arrange your insurance through a broker like us.
Every type of office insurance contract is different. And for most people, the idea of sitting down and carefully reading through terms and conditions – let alone comparing them across policies – is like drawing teeth. But to make sure you actually end up with cover that will protect your business when things go wrong, it is vital to get the detail right.
“Thanks for your quick response. I told my mother that your service was outstanding and they should go with my recommendation to rely on your expertise. So far you have never let me down and I appreciate it very much.” Mike K., Sydney CBD, NSW