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Home Insurance traps

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Catriona, Dec 1, 2013.

  1. RogerMac

    RogerMac Well-Known Member

    Woops I will have to check up on that. If you are correct neither my wife (nor for that matter my grandson) could drive either of our cars if anything happened to me.
  2. TimHeath

    TimHeath Well-Known Member

    Since my father had died his policy ceased immediately and a refund paid and although my policy will allow me to drive any other car as long as it is insured by another driver.

    It had to be pointed out to me before I realised.
  3. Catriona

    Catriona Well-Known Member

    Yes, £936 for me, whereas I'm currently paying about £450.
    Too much to change to, I'm afraid!
  4. RogerMac

    RogerMac Well-Known Member

    I have known for a long time that one had to leave sufficient funds either in a joint account or the partners name so that she could continue to pay bills until probate was granted. I will have to check the position with the cars as that could be a major problem for her.
  5. BikerMike

    BikerMike Well-Known Member

    Wow, I'm shocked to hear that. In my father's case we were told that as long as we didn't stop the payments, his house cover would continue. His house insurance was supplied by his bank, Abbey National.

    I don't know if this has any bearing on the issue, but it was a small local branch that he had been with for decades and knew the manager. (?)

    Your case implies that as soon as anyone is deceased, all their property ceases to be insured???

    I'm finding this hard to fathom.

    Regards, Mike
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2013
  6. MickLL

    MickLL In the Stop Bath

    An extremely interesting thread.

    Because I'm a bit of a hoarder I have three policy documents from three different insurers and each one of them fails to mention what happens on the death of the policy holder.

    In my case I don't think that it will matter because all of our household policies are in joint names. It will apply to our motoring policies.

  7. BikerMike

    BikerMike Well-Known Member

    I'm trying to envisage a not uncommon scenario in which a householder dies at home and as a result there is some damage to the property, i.e. a heart attack while cooking or running the bath.

    So his partner comes home, finds him dead, with extensive damage to the property and is told "Tough luck, he's dead, so the insurance is invalid."

    What if he died in the same fire which damaged the building? Tough luck again?

    Doesn't add up to me.

    Regards, Mike
  8. Catriona

    Catriona Well-Known Member

    Well, it is difficult, as I'm sure a few of you know, when your partner dies.

    I went to the bank to sort things out and got a complete list of all Direct Debits. Went through them with a very kind bank employee, either cancelling some on the spot or contacting others to inform them of the change required. I'm only now thinking of changing my Insurance provider, but on reflection and after seeing other quotes, perhaps I won't.
    I do think some Insurance agents such as John Lewis, for example, have very little knowledge when it comes to taking your money. My current policy is with Bradford & Bingley - only it isn't them who are insuring me, it is Legal & General - and the 2nd step after talking to a call centre, is direct contact with the Loss Adjusters. I didn't like it at all. If your heating system is over 5 years old, any claim is deemed wear & tear! No matter that it had been serviced annually and actually the fault appeared to have been caused by that service. Perhaps I should have sued that firm instead.
  9. BikerMike

    BikerMike Well-Known Member

    (cont'd) ... And what if the insured is killed in a car accident? His car insurance instantly becomes invalid so any third parties in the crash are not covered unless it can be ascertained that the damage occured milliseconds before he died?

    No, no no, this cannot be.

    Regards, Mike
  10. TimHeath

    TimHeath Well-Known Member

    What you say makes sense Mike. I can add little more, I can only relate my two instances as executor of my dad's estate when he suddenly died two years ago. In both cases a period of 'grace' would be approriate but I am sure of the case regarding the insurance of the cottage because having to provide ongoing cover was so expensive, I can remember certain details. The car wasn't such an issue (having my own etc) but I remember having to take out short term insurance to take it to be sold etc. my overriding impression of the whole experience was:

    Be very wary of insurance companies.

  11. nspur

    nspur Well-Known Member

    Dead right. Two years ago mine wanted me to have my alarm connected via wireless to the monitoring station as well as by phone line. On this year's renewal they wanted a lot more money to insure for flood damage so I said take it off cover and I'll carry the risk, then they wanted fire alarms to be tied into the system at more expense which I refused to do. The chap that advises me said get another policy with XYZ but it will cost more so next year I'm going to cancel all my insurances except the ones I have to have for legal reasons.
  12. BikerMike

    BikerMike Well-Known Member

    Indeed, sometimes they are little better than banks in their contempt for us "punters".

    Protection, security, peace of mind, ... blah, blah, blah, - and then do their utmost to find weasel words in their contracts to avoid payouts.

    Thanks anyway for the discussion - it has raised one or two issues which I would like to find answers to.

    All the best,

    Regards, Mike
  13. BikerMike

    BikerMike Well-Known Member

    And by next year they will have introduced tighter restrictions (all in the name of safety, of course) so that you will need to get yet more cover.

    One day, in their greed, they will kill the goose ...

    Regards, Mike
  14. LesleySM

    LesleySM Well-Known Member

    Not a joint account! When my dad died my mum told the bank the next day and they immediately closed the joint account and took 2 weeks to open an account in just her name and transfer the funds. As she didn't have a seperate account this left her with the £12.62 she had in her purse to last 2 weeks, luckily, my brother could lend her some money to tide her over. The bank also bounced several standing orders that came in and although they had closed the account pending transferring funds to a new account that did not stop them, as you can imagine, from taking charges from it for bouncing standing orders etc.

    My mum wasn't terrribly happy about this and neither in the end was the bank because entirely due to their lack of help at a time when she could have done with some- she closed her account and went elsewhere
  15. MickLL

    MickLL In the Stop Bath

    First let me say that what follows isn't 'getting at' anyone. But this thread has set me wondering why some folk have such bad experiences and some don't.

    I've lived well over my 'three score and ten' and have been with the same bank for much of that.

    I've never paid them a penny in fees or interest and have had excellent service. It's true that they did make a mistake some years ago with a large amount of money. That caused fees to be charged both by them and another institution. One phone call put it right instantly. They refunded all fees without quibble and also sent my wife some flowers.

    I've unfortunately had to make a few insurance clams in that time too. I've always been treated with utmost courtesy and always been very satisfied with the outcome.

    OTOH I have friends who seem to lurch from one crisis to the next. They seem to have problems with every organization that they deal with and are constantly complaining.

    I once had cause to make a point to BA (I missed a plane through my own fault and was not told about an alternative). Even though it was my fault they sent me a case of wine.

    Why? What's the difference?

  16. RogerMac

    RogerMac Well-Known Member

    [Expletive deleted] That's way out of order, when this has happened in our family the advice we got from the bank always was "We have to make a note of the current balance, but otherwise carry on as normal". In fact I think that your mothers bank was inconsistent legally as if it felt that the account needed freezing then it had no legal right to transfer the funds into her name until probate was granted and they were instructed by the executors.

    With respect to the insurance problem I have not yet got to the bottom of it but I have found that (since 1934) an estate can both sue and be sued so surely any insurance taken out would need to continue, at least until the estate is wound up formally.
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2013
  17. Catriona

    Catriona Well-Known Member

    It's the Sir you prefix your name with?

    I think you are being a little naive or disingenuous in your generalisation. I'm sure we all have problems with organisations to some extent during our lives. Some just accept them (not knowing any difference to normal) and some rail against them so that the service offered can get better.
    Some are more knowledgeable than others and negotiate the pitfalls (or avoid them) in a better way.
    My thoughts in starting this thread was a resentment against my current Insurance company after I spent a very cold few winter months after losing my much serviced heating system.
    I have to say I got compassion from the police force, who I reported the matter to, since I couldn't see any leak and thought it might have been stolen (my oil, that is). The policewoman who came to see me actually was very concerned about my being so cold and pushed me to go to an organisation which ultimately helped me to get a whole new heating system put in.
    Insurance companies are very pleased to take your money, but some of us are shocked that after years of paying insurance, a claim can be refused on grounds we were not aware of. In my circumstances, the excuse was that the system I had was over 5 years old. That was not anywhere in the policy statement. Since I felt cold and very vulnerable at the time, I was hurt, annoyed and resentful towards that company.
    So, I have been looking at other companies and wondering whether to move. Being on my own - I am now reassured by something I got in writing today, which informs me of their (Axa's) unoccupied definition - which is 30 days continuous unoccupation at any time.

    Count yourself lucky! I do, on occasions, such as the helpfulness of my bank when my husband died. The bank's help was better than the solicitor I paid to administer the Will!

    Last edited: Dec 2, 2013
  18. LesleySM

    LesleySM Well-Known Member

    We all said she should complain further but understandably she had other things on her mind at the time.....and she was the executor
  19. RogerMac

    RogerMac Well-Known Member

    I think you have a point there they are quite prepared to try it on with the little man / woman in a way that they would never dream of someone the judged as important.

    The bank has twice tried to cheat me (so they obviously rated me as the little man) The first time I got absolutely nowhere complaining through the normal channels so I wrote very politely to the managing director asking him which of the banks divisions should be named as defendant in the small claims court. Major panic obviously ensued and I got the money back with a few days. The other time they tried to retrospectively impose a fee for closing a mortgage, every time I complained they just sent me a leaflet showing the size of the fee
    and said they were entitled to charge it. This time I quoted from an "Introduction to English Law" that I had been told to buy and keep during a couple of lectures on Law for Engineers when I was an undergraduate (long, long ago). Again I got the money back by return.

    The message is - if they try to roll you over stand up for your rights
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2013
  20. Mark101

    Mark101 Well-Known Member

    My Dad died last year and I never told the bank and left it all to the solicitor arranging probate. The result was his account wasn't closed for around 6 weeks and since I was the sole beneficiary the solicitor allowed me to access his money through the bank and when that stopped when I asked for money it was freely advanced by the solicitor. My tip is never ever be OTT and too fast in telling an organization that someone has died until there is a need. As for telling someone, for example a bank that someone had died, there is no need until at least the death is registered. and a death certificate issued. How does a bank know for example that someone with a joint account isn't just being malicious telling them someone has died and to close that account on the basis of a phone call? IF YOU DO IT IS BOUND TO CAUSE FINANCIAL PROBLEMS.

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