Frequently asked questions

Our Customer Claims team have listened to feedback from our customers and used this to put together a list of answers to the most commonly asked questions. Please browse the sections below – if you can’t find the answer you’re looking for, don’t hesitate to contact us – we’re here to help you.
General queries

An excess is a contribution you are required to pay towards a claim you make on your insurance policy.

Different excesses may apply to different sections of your policy, so please check your policy wording and schedule for confirmation of the excesses that apply to you. If you are still unsure please speak to us or your insurance broker.

If you've supplied your own contractor's estimate, the excess will either be deducted from the final settlement payment that we issue, or you'll need to pay the excess to your contractor once the work has been completed.

If you're using one of our approved suppliers the supplier will collect the policy excess from you. This will usually be done before the supplier carries out the required work.

A number of factors can influence how long it'll take to settle your claim.

We've analysed data on the most common claims so we know the key elements that can impact the time it takes to settle; our expert claims handlers will be able to advise you further dependent on your own individual circumstances.

Most customers prefer to receive settlement by bank transfer. Your claims handler will ask you to provide your account name, sort code and account number so that they can arrange payment.

If you need us to issue payment to another party, we'll ask you to provide written confirmation of this.

Cheques can be issued if you specifically request it.

Where we've appointed a supplier, you'll be required to settle any excess and VAT (if applicable), and we'll settle the remainder of the invoice directly with the supplier. 

Unfortunately we're unable to provide any specific information as to what impact a claim might have on your future renewal premium. The renewal premium is calculated by our team of underwriters who look at a number of factors; previous claims are just one of these factors.

Please speak to your insurance broker for further advice.

Property claims

You should carry out emergency action to protect your property from further damage (e.g. turning off mains services) or to make it waterproof or secure.

It's important you contact us as soon as possible to report the claim so we can advise you on the best course of action. Please ensure you contact us before authorising permanent repairs.

Keep all estimates and invoices for any work completed and take photographs of the damage, if possible.

We have access to a number of different repairers and suppliers who can assist with:

  • Damage restoration (drying out, smoke damage assistance)
  • Boarding up of damaged windows and window replacement
  • Drainage investigation and repair
  • Carpet and flooring replacement
  • Replacement of electrical goods
  • Building repair services

Our suppliers will contact you to arrange a convenient time for a visit to discuss your claim. In most cases, our supplier will collect the policy excess from you, and the VAT element of the claim if you are VAT registered. The excess will usually be collected before the repair/replacement takes place.

Please ask your claims handler for more information on any of our suppliers. 

If you choose to use your own contractor, for lower value claims, one repair estimate is generally enough.

Our Claims team will advise you if a second estimate is required. We're likely to request a second estimate if we believe a third party is responsible for the damage as it can assist us in making a recovery.

If you have selected Business Interruption cover and your trade has been affected by the incident, please advise your claims handler at the earliest opportunity.

In the majority of claims for business interruption, we'll appoint a Loss Adjuster to manage the claim and assist in getting you trading as soon as possible, in addition to arranging your compensation for lost business. If the damage to your premises is severe our loss adjuster is likely to investigate the possibility of arranging for you to trade from alternative premises.

Residential property - Your policy may provide cover for moving tenants into alternative residential accommodation or you may have cover for Loss of Rent for the period the premises are uninhabitable. Please inform your claims handler if you feel that the property is uninhabitable, and they'll discuss the available options with you.

Commercial property - Your policy may provide cover for Loss of Rent for the period that the damage renders the property incapable of being let. Please speak to your claims handler at the earliest opportunity.

In either case, it's likely a loss adjuster will be appointed to manage the claim.

Your property may require cleaning or sanitising following the fire and so it may be necessary to appoint a damage restoration company.

We may appoint a forensic expert to visit the premises and report on the cause of the damage, particularly if we believe a third party could be responsible.

Once the initial cleaning is completed, and the fire brigade have completed any enquiries they may have, we can begin to repair/replace damaged buildings and contents, using either your own contractors or our own approved suppliers.

Leaks are often caused by an old or worn pipe, and the cost of repairing the pipe is usually not covered under your policy, so you'll need to get the leak stopped and pipe/apparatus fixed before damage caused by the water can be sorted.

Depending on the type of water which has escaped, and the amount of water that has escaped, a damage restoration company may be appointed. They'll be able to clean and sanitise any areas affected by an escape of foul water, and will also assist with drying the property using dehumidifiers.

It can sometimes take several weeks, even months on occasion, to fully dry a property following an escape of water. We'll always look to authorise work as soon as possible and we might be able to start work while part of the property is still being dried.

Damage caused by river or coastal flooding can be devastating.  Often it's not safe to access until flood waters have subsided, so we may have to wait for the water levels to drop before a contractor or adjuster visits the premises. 

A damage restoration company can be appointed to assist with cleaning and drying the premises, and the drying process can take a substantial amount of time if the property suffered extensive damage.  Drying time can run into months if flood waters reached high levels within the building.

As soon as part of the property is confirmed as dry we may be able to authorise work to commence, even if some areas are still being dried. This can be through your preferred contractor or one of our approved suppliers.

Your claims handler will ask you for details of the security measures which were in place on the damaged door or window through which access was gained, so it would be helpful to have this information available before calling us.

As thieves can cause many different kinds of damage when they break in, we may need the assistance of a damage restoration company to clean up. If the premises needs boarding up, we can appoint a glazing company to do this for you and then arrange for the damaged glass to be replaced. Repair of any internal damage to the buildings, fixtures or decorations can then be arranged either using your own contractor or one of our approved suppliers.

We'll ask for an inventory of any items stolen, together with proof of purchase of those items (original purchase receipts are preferred) and estimates to replace the stolen items with a similar model of product. In the case of electrical goods we may be able to appoint a supplier to arrange to replace the stolen items. 

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