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Disgruntled insurance policy-holders emerge following floods

FLOOD COVER: Avoca resident Adrian Wheatley is heartbroken after his insurance agents informed him he is not covered for flood damage. Photo: Scottie Simmonds / NewsMail
FLOOD COVER: Avoca resident Adrian Wheatley is heartbroken after his insurance agents informed him he is not covered for flood damage. Photo: Scottie Simmonds / NewsMail Scottie Simmonds

AS BUNDABERG'S floodwaters recede and insurance claims are lodged, disgruntled policy-holders are starting to emerge.

Avoca resident Adrian Wheatley said he was furious and frustrated to learn his Ferny Ave home was not covered for flood damage when he contacted Allianz after up to 30cm of water inundated every room.

Mr Wheatley discovered that by renewing his policy in May 2012 he had just missed out being automatically offered flood cover as it was only added to new or renewing customers from June 2012.

"When Allianz announced in 2011 they were adding flood insurance to their Prestige Policy it was never made clear that in Bundaberg the flood cover wasn't going to be made available until June 2012," he said.

"When they did change their Prestige Policy then they should have reissued all Queensland Prestige customers' new updates and a whole new policy."

Allianz general manager of corporate affairs Nicholas Scofield defended the company's decision to roll out the automatic cover from June 2012.

"We didn't anticipate another flood and we felt the best way to communicate with our customers was when they were up for renewal," he said.

Mr Scofield said policy-holders who had renewed before the flood cover was automatically added could have contacted Allianz to increase their policy payments to cover flood damage but unless customers had been paying those higher flood premiums, they were not covered.

A representative of the Insurance Council of Australia confirmed estimates across Queensland now stood at 29,800 claims lodged for a value of about $318 million.

Insurance companies have been put on notice with a spokesman for the Premier's Office saying the government and all Queenslanders had expectations of insurance companies.

"He (the Premier) believes Queenslanders should be able to get insurance at a fair price and with coverage that suits their individual circumstances, and has always advised people to shop around for the best possible deal," the spokesman said.

 

Topics:  bundaberg floods editors picks flood insurance oswald



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