New statistics claim that one in five home insurance claims is repudiated (not paid) by Insurance companies. The Association of British Insurers published figures to promote transparency and understanding with consumers and the general public.
Building Insurance Claims
Most policies we see are under insured. The value of reinstating your property is not what the market value is. Remember that about 30% of the rebuild is in the ground. Add to that legal, professional and local authority fees and you can see that the sum you have covered in the policy gradually eroding.
Make sure your home is not undervalued as this is the most an insurer will pay out. In some cases an insurer may even return your premium and cancel the policy as you have grossly misrepresented their risk. Remember it’s your responsibility not the insurance company to obtain accurate values for reinstatement.
Another reason insurers repudiate property insurance claims is if the loss or damage was the result of “gradual deterioration” or a lack of “maintenance”, you will not be covered.Things such as failed damp proof course s and some rot are examples of this.
Poor design and faulty workmanship. In this instance you will not be covered. If you believe the cause to be as a result of negligence by a contractor then you may be wise to seek legal advice regarding a claim against the supplier or installer. Your building insurer is likely to reject any claim in this regard.
Beware of taking long holidays. If you leave a property Unoccupied for 30 consecutive days or more without advising your insurer, they could have grounds to repudiate a claim.This is especially true for fire claim damage and water damage.
Material change in the risk – insurers must be informed of any “material increase” in the value of the risk they are covering. For instance, with home prices and building costs escalating so quickly, the replacement value of homes has increased. Any alterations to your property will likely increase the value and there could be risk of damage during construction. If this happens, seek the advice of an insurance claims management company.
Non-compliance with security requirements – make sure you are familiar with policy conditions and endorsements. Should you fail to comply with your policy conditions on minimum security, your claim could be repudiated.
You must have what’s known as an “insurable interest” in the property, in other words a financial interest in insuring the asset. If you only part own it or not at all then you will find insurers will reduce proportionally or even refuse to pay at all.
Loss Assessors Oakleafe Claims offer A mid term survey to identify material changes and problem areas in a policy that needs the policyholders attention. Key to this are the warranties and conditions that are the spine of any cover.
The term repudiation in Insurance claims management refers to the rejection by Insurers to pay a claim. They will relate this rejection to a specific reason such as non-adherence to a warranty or condition in your contract of insurance. It is always advisable to seek the help of a claims management company in this instance. Sometimes it can be easily turned around with the production of information in the right manner which has been misinterpreted by the Loss adjuster.