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Any legal types, insurance experts in?

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I'm looking for some advice and I welcome any opinions on the following. A few weeks ago I contacted my home insurance company to make a claim for accidental damage to my laptop. I told them exactl… Read More
davelfc Avatar
9y, 7m agoPosted 9 years, 7 months ago
I'm looking for some advice and I welcome any opinions on the following.

A few weeks ago I contacted my home insurance company to make a claim for accidental damage to my laptop. I told them exactly what had happened and what the damage was. They told me it would cost me £50 excess minus the cost of sending the laptop to them for salvage, which I did the same day.

After about 10 days or more of the insurance company dragging their feet they finally agreed to pay a company I had found a suitable replacement from They posted me a mandate to complete so they could release payment for the laptop to the laptop supplier. Again they repeated I would have to pay the £50 excess.

The mandate arrived with a covering letter the letter pointed out that my excess was £50, I returned the mandate and waited.

A few days later I received a telephone call. It now appears I will have to pay £100 excess, one of their staff has made an error. If the laptop had been damaged outdoors the excess is £50, I damaged mine indoors so it's £100.

Now they've waved away any complaint, although we are going through with the replacement of the laptop, I'm now going to have to pay £100 minus the postage charge for the old laptop.

The insurance company have said that the reason they are not going to honour the £50 they quoted (on the phone and in print) is because I am not actually out of pocket. My take on this is that I have to have the laptop and therefore they are fully aware that I will be out of pocket because of this.

They even told me that had I gone ahead and purchased the laptop myself then they would not have increased the excess as I would then have been out of pocket. I don't see the difference myself.

Could anyone shed any light on this, does anyone think a small claims action is likely to be successful .
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davelfc Avatar
9y, 7m agoPosted 9 years, 7 months ago
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#1
Yeah get it check legally but the thing that confuses me is that the excess is less outdoors than indoors?!!? Its Home Insurance?? Anywho sounds like (IMO) cobblers and they pulling a fast one, which company is it so I can avoid them.
#2
It sounds like cobblers to me, just thought I'd run it past a few people here first.
#3
Who is the company? that is a bizare clause if you ask me, it doesnt make sense. Youve got more chance of damaging a laptop if you dropped it on concrete than you would on carpet, and they want to charge you more for indoor damage?

Sound like you need to change companies if you ask me (use quidco if you do)

I hate insurance companies, they make you feel guilty for claiming, and then increase your premium when you do. But they dont care if you pay up for 20 years and never make a claim.
#4
davelfc


A few days later I received a telephone call. It now appears I will have to pay £100 excess, one of their staff has made an error. If the laptop had been damaged outdoors the excess is £50, I damaged mine indoors so it's £100. then they would not have increased the excess as I would then have been out of pocket. I don't see the difference myself.


You will need to dig out your insurance policy booklet and your policy schedule.
Normally the excess is applied on any claim irrespective of where the loss occurs. Your policy schedule should show the excess and to what it applies. Mine is £100 of any contents claim.

Be very careful about arguing with insurance companies as they now try to wriggle out of anything that they legitimately can. You say that you need your laptop - please ensure that you dont tell them this is needed for any business purpose as if you do use it for that, it is not usually covered under normal household insurance unless you specify it as such and have told them you operate your business from home.

Finally I think its worth remembering that people are only human and sometimes make errors. So if you were told the excess was £50 and it was in fact £100 then at the end of the day so long as you're getting a new PC then your insurance company has done its job.

Hope this helps.
#5
pluves1

Be very careful about arguing with insurance companies as they now try to wriggle out of anything that they legitimately can. You say that you need your laptop - please ensure that you dont tell them this is needed for any business purpose as if you do use it for that, it is not usually covered under normal household insurance unless you specify it as such and have told them you operate your business from home.

Finally I think its worth remembering that people are only human and sometimes make errors. So if you were told the excess was £50 and it was in fact £100 then at the end of the day so long as you're getting a new PC then your insurance company has done its job.

Hope this helps.


Thanks, yes I managed to dodge the 'laptop for business' minefield. I understand what you are saying about mistakes and me having a new laptop but when you're constantly quoted £50 and get that in writing only for it to leap up to £100 just before they cut the cheque it annoys.
#6
I have had numerous 'run ins' with Insurance companies over the years and whilst I dont blame them for trying to cut down on payouts, sometimes they can be infuriating.

Like I say if your excess is £100 then I dont think you have much option. If your excess says £50 then you have every right to go back to them.

Insurance is now regulated by the FSA and if you have the £50 excess in writing drop me a pm if you want to take it further. You must first complain to the insurance company in writing. There is a little know fact that can work in your favour if the insurance company decide to stand their ground and issue a final letter which you can then take to the Financial Ombudsmen Service further details about which can be found here

http://www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk/
1 Like #7
I work for an insurance company. You should tell them you want the excess of £50 applied as it is not your fault they quoted it incorrectly, you are entitled to rely on their written word. Explain if they will not then you will take a complaint to the Financial Ombudsman, they will uphold your complaint.
PM me if you need any further info.
#8
What a weird policy. I've never heard of having different excesses for indoor and outdoor incidents. As it's been suggested, dig out your policy paperwork and go through it and look for where it states you have an indoor and outdoor rate. Obviously, if it's there in black and white, I'd accept they had just made an error, as frustrating as it is. If there's nothing there about the different rates on personal items/contents and it doesn't state it's £100, send a complaint by recorded delivery and if they still argue, ask them to confirm their position in this matter is final so you can refer it to the Financial Ombudsman.

The Ombudsman won't look at it until your insurance company have been given a chance to put things right, so you need to do the official complaint letter as a first step. :thumbsup:
#9
They quoted a price, you paid it. Contract formed. If they made a mistake it's their fault. Put a grievance in writing, send recorded delivery. Give em 10 working days to fix it, or you'll contact a solicitor (or if your cheap the CAB, Consumer Direct or similar) regarding negligence action as the consumer relys on the skill of the company offering the service. This one's as ridiculous as the Littlewoods charges.

(PS I'm not disparaging the CAB (or any other charitable organisation). The work they do is absolutely invaluable, and the staff are for the most part intelligent & dedicated.)
#10
Update:

They are not going to charge me the extra £50 and as they have already released the money for the laptop they are sending me a cheque for the £50.

Thanks for the offers of help, advice and opinions.
#11
Good result, well done

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