Sharon's Biking Blog
Insurance Admin Abominations
Blog Date - 12 May 2015
I have finally moved home after the usual hassle and uncertainty. The ensuing chaos has meant no time to write up my blog but I have still been riding my bike. I had to to keep sane :-).
With moving comes the rather large task of informing everyone of your new address, including of course your various insurance policies. Now I am moving within the same postal area so any additional fees will not be due to a change in premiums they will be purely be for amending any documents with my new address.
I am fully aware that some if not most insurance companies charge an administration fee for changes to the policy mid term. I was therefore most pleasantly surprised to find that my home insurance company Shelias Wheels made no charge what so ever for my change of address. They even provided an endorsement to also cover my new home until I moved which they faxed through to my Solicitor with again no charge. So excellent service from Shelias Wheels A++ service.
On to my car Insurance, I am currently with Churchill. They charged me a £30 admin. Hmmm rather on the steep side of the average charge of around £25 but not too surprising.
Now the biggest shocker was the the bike insurance. A great BIG whopping £50 admin charge was requested from my insurers Just Motorcycles. FIFTY WHOLE POUNDS !! I had to have them clarify the charge to me twice to make it sink in. I then had to put the phone down so I could curse and rant away to myself about the inJUSTice of Just Motorcycles. This charge was JUST stupid, JUST ridiculous, JUST extortionate. What ever JUST you wanted to use one thing was for sure a admin charge this high was certainly not JUSTifiable.
Now their policy states they will make a charge of UP TO £50 for a change in policy details. I argued with them that UP TO would suggest that this is a maximum charge and therefore one would infer that one could also pay less than £50. As mine was a very simple change incurring no change in premiums and as I do not pay by direct debit no changes in any bank payments surely this was therefore one of the simplest changes to have and would be LESS Than £50. No they said the charge was £50. So lets just say if you ever see an up to charge in your policy just disregard that bit and take it that the charge will be the maximum stated.
If I cancelled my policy I would have to pay £50 to do so. So which ever way they were getting £50 from me for me to change an address on my policy.
When I come to renew my bike insurance and indeed any other insurance I will not only be comparing the actual price quoted but I will also look closely at any administrations charges that are attached to the policy. I suggest you do the same particularly if you know you are likely to make any changes to your policy at all throughout that year.
Doug said :-
I feel your pain. I was in the final month of my annual insurance policy with Swinton (paid in full, up front), when I sold the bike In preparation for a new one. My policy was £75 fully comp, yet they wanted £50 to cancel it, plus an additional surcharge if I wanted to pay their fee with a credit card. Banditz.
Next time I change bikes, I'm going to let the policy end, and not renew. I can put up with a week or so of no bike.
Doug said :-
Oh, and if you leave it a week, they send a menacing letter stating they'll add £25 and send it to a debt collection agency where large bald men in sheepskin coats, no teeth and way too much gold jewellery will do nasty things to your credit rating.
I swear, when I'm king.....
Diane said :-
It's totally ridiculous; a piece if paper that can cost £50
My husband did as you Doug, selling his bike in preparation for his new one. He did however let the policy run the final couple of weeks so not to incur the admin charge. His new bike is due Monday. Yes 3 weeks with no bike but the satisfaction of no extra money to pay out!
Ren - The Ed said :-
Because the law requires us to have insurance the insurance companies know they have us over a barrel. We DO have the option to shop around but of course the charges are hidden deep in the complex policy documents.
The only option is to vote with your money and don't use them again next time. The internet is also a great medium to spread the word of hidden costs and general bad behaviour from businesses.
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Sharon's Biking Blog