Thursday, 17 July 2014
Adverse Claims History Explained
When your claims history is described as “adverse”, it is usually because you have made a large number of claims in the past. Though this is likely to be the result of a run of bad luck, unfortunately it doesn’t stop there.
When your claims history is described as "adverse", it is usually because you have made a large number of (or a small number of high value) claims in the past. Though this is likely to be the result of a run of bad luck, unfortunately it doesn't stop there.
Your bad luck is likely to continue when you come to apply for home insurance in the future too. Having an adverse claims history can become a problem when trying to renew your policy, or when a new insurer asks you to disclose any claims you have made in the past.
You are required to disclose your claims history when applying for insurance because it is considered a "material fact". You have a duty to disclose all material facts when applying for insurance, even when you are not asked to disclose them directly. However, if an insurer fails to ask you to disclose any particular material fact and then later refuses to pay a claim directly because of this fact, you may have grounds to complain. Having a high claims history can be extremely problematic, but it doesn't mean that you should be forced to forego home insurance completely.
The principle of utmost good faith
Unfortunately, the principle of "utmost good faith" (that requires us to disclose all material facts without being asked) can create obstacles for people who have been unlucky in the past when trying to get insured again. Though this may seem unfair, it is sadly the way insurance contract law has evolved and must be obeyed until such a time as the rules are set right. Many argue that the onus should be on the insurers to ask about all relevant information, though even in this case it is likely to prove hard to get insured with an adverse insurance claims history holding you back.
It seems that the more accidents you endure, or inopportune circumstances you survive, the more risk you pose to a potential insurer. This is not necessarily true. In fact, in most situations it is a result of the mainstream insurer's inability to assess your risk adequately that prevents you from getting cover. Having an adverse claims history is often all it takes for a standard insurer to refuse to offer you a quote, but when you seek cover from a specialist insurer they will usually ask you more detailed questions to help determine the actual risk you might present.
Home insurance with previous claims
Other examples of an adverse claims history might include cases where your previous insurer has refused to pay a claim for any number of reasons. Again, standard insurers will often refuse to quote you once this fact is revealed, often without even attempting to discover if the reason is relevant to your new application.
This is not the case with HomeProtect. We are committed to providing competitive online quotes for people with a poor claims history or any other type of adverse insurance claims history. We will never dismiss you out of hand, or be prejudiced against you because you have had bad luck in the past.