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What they really mean.....

All the world loves a 'trier' – someone who will always give things a go. Perhaps the exception to this belief are those motorists who try to include things they know very well are not covered by insurance as they make a car insurance claim. Do they genuinely set out to con the insurers, or are they just confused?

It seems that motorists are trying to pass off old damage and normal wear and tear to their vehicles as part of genuine car insurance claims in order to get their insurers to pay for all their repairs. Here we look at a few of the misconceptions and tricks which frequently appear on insurance claims.

The 'Two for One' Claim – where a driver tried to get old damage on their car fixed as part of repairs being done as the result of an accident. In reality, assessors and garages can easily identify such old damage and will not undertake the repairs.

The 'While You're There' Claim – a slight variation on the above, except here the motorist asked the garage to fix the old damage 'as a favour, while you're there' expecting the garage to hide the cost within the invoice to the insurer. In reality, if a garage does do this, they risk being caught and losing their very lucrative insurance work: therefore, any scrupulous garage will refuse to get involved in this scam. The cost of fraudulent repairs is passed on to policyholders in the form of higher premiums and so it is the law-abiding amongst us who ultimately pay for this underhand action.

The 'It's Not Actually A Claim' Claim – this is where motorists try to claim for mechanical problems or mistakes they may have made, such as putting diesel in a petrol vehicle. Such claims are not valid and no insurance company will support these.

The 'It Must Have Been Caused By The Accident' Claim – sometimes, once the garage gets to work to fix the damage caused during the accident they find other problems such as worn parts, which are not a part of the damaged sustained during the accident. Motorists often ask garages to include this in the cost of the insurance repair, saying it must have occurred as a direct result of the accident. Garages and assessors are able to determine what damage relates to the accident and anything else will not be covered by the insurance policy.

The 'It Was In My Gove Box or Boot' Claim – owners claim that they had expensive items locked in their glove box or boot which were then subsequently stolen. In reality, thieves target cars which have expensive items on view and they can see what they are aiming to steal. Insurance assessors will be able to tell if the facts of the crime match the policyholder's claim: for example a broken rear window does not equate to items being stolen from the boot of a vehicle! It is up to the vehicle owner/driver to ensure that they take as many precautions as possible to keep safe their belongings, so any insurance company will ask a lot of questions before they take theft at face value.

The 'It Should Be In Showroom Condition' dream - even when their vehicle is in a poor state before a crash, many owners expect their car to come back in showroom condition following repairs. This will not happen – the garage is responsible only to fix the damage caused by the accident.

The 'Free Service and MOT' Claim – many motorists actually demand a free service, or even a free MOT! This will never happen, the garage will fix only the damage caused by the accident.

The 'Main Dealer Myth' Claim – A large number of motorists believe their cars can only be fixed by a main dealer for the manufacturer, particularly if it is still under warranty, a perception that is promulgated by the main dealers themselves as they stand to make a lot of money by hovering up repair work! However, even if a car is under warranty, you can still take your car elsewhere for repair. Many main dealers actually outsources bodywork repairs to the same firms the insurance companies use – only the main dealers charge a much higher rate!

Insurance is a vital part of motoring, and something to be taken seriously. Westhill Insurance Services is an independent insurance company with a friendly team of advisors who can guide you through the insurance maze. We will shop around to make sure you have exactly the right insurance to provide the cover you need – we don't try to sell you expensive extras and we take the time to listen to what is important to you. That way, you know exactly what your policy covers you for – so should you be involved in an accident, you know you have all the cover you need to get your vehicle back on the road. One quick call and we can quote for your car insurance – and any other type insurance you may require too. Give us a try – we are on the side of the good guys!

Contact Westhill Insurance Services, today.

Posted on 30th August, 2012