Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some answers to the most Frequently Asked Questions we get about insurance. Please feel free to contact us if you have any further questions.

General

Insurance is the spreading and managing the risk among many parties. In essence insurance policies are legal contracts between the insurance company and the policy holder, where the insurer charges a premium to transfer risk from an insured to themselves. Insurance companies receive premiums from many parties and create a pool of money to pay out an insured who suffers a loss. The insurance company therefore needs to be fully informed on the nature and extent of the risk in order to charge the correct premiums and to pay claims in full. Over the last 300 years, insurers have developed mathematical models to determine what chance there is of a risk occurring and what premiums the insurer must charge.

One needs to insure against losses or events beyond your control, so as to avoid being financially devastated. We live in a country rife with crime. Insurance costs a fraction of the price of replacing your assets, if they are damaged or stolen. Taking out personal insurance is a frugal way to ensure that your hard earned assets are protected against the trials of life. Insurers can place you back in the position that you were in, prior to the loss or event. Anyone who has a home, furniture, clothes, jewelry, appliances, cars or boats, should take insurance to ensure that these items are protected against theft or damage by fire, lightning, flood, hail, etc. Having one brokerage to manage your insurance can result in overall savings and easier claims processing, as all claims would be put through to the same organisation.

You can only insure assets/goods where you have a legal interest or a relation whereby you benefit by its safety or would be prejudiced by its loss or damage, as caused by an insurable peril or event.

This is a condition in a policy of insurance which must be complied with literally.

An Endorsement can vary a policy term or condition or state a condition under which an item will have cover.

SASRIA (South African Special Risks Association) is the insurer of damage caused by Riots whether politically motivated or not, Strikes, Civil disobedience, Rebellion and Labour Disturbances. All of these are excluded by virtually all policies of insurance issued in South Africa and are therefore insurable by SASRIA.

This is a discount of premium, which is earned for not claiming from the insurer over a period of time. These bonuses are affected by claims.

Vehicle

The retail value is the average price a dealer would sell the vehicle for, taking its age, condition and mileage into account. The trade value is the price a dealer would pay you if you traded your car in. If your vehicle is covered for its retail value and it is written-off or stolen, the settlement amount will be based on its retail value, less the applicable excess. This will enable you to replace the vehicle with a similar model.

The annual premium review takes into account the depreciated value of the vehicle, but that is not the only factor which determines the premium. The majority of claims are for accidents and the cost of repairs and parts constantly increase with inflation (and exchange rates as some parts are imported). We may thus need to increase our premiums, as it costs more to repair vehicles.

Vehicle theft is an unfortunate, but very real part of everyday life in South Africa. We take a preventative approach to the problem by requesting the installation of quality anti-theft devices, in order to minimize, or prevent vehicle theft. The initial outlay is well worth the investment, as this kind of preventative approach yields results.

The choice of panel beater rests with the insurer, as they have a selected panel of repairers whose work is guaranteed for 12 months. You may elect to choose your own repairer, but the insurer will not guarantee the quality of their workmanship.

Insures have a salvage contract with specialist salvage companies, which sell all recovered vehicles on auction. You would need to deal directly with the salvage company.

If they have an accident, some insurers may reject your claim if the person is under the influence, even if you were unaware that the driver was intoxicated.

If your vehicle is only used, even occasionally, for any business use (like going to the bank to make a deposit) it can be construed by an insurer as being for business use.

If you install Mag Wheels, or an expensive sound system, or any performance modification, you must inform us. Engine modifications will make your insurance invalid.

This is an advisable option as the premium is reasonable and you are assured of having a vehicle to drive while your vehicle is at the panel beater, or if it is stolen.

Building & Contents

We cover the buildings on a new for old basis (e.g. replacing an old burst geyser with a new one). In calculating the replacement value, we take into account the demolish costs, debris removal, professional and municipal services fees and the materials and labour costs. We also update the replacement costs of the buildings annually as part of the review of your facility.

We can provide you with an Inventory to assist you to list the contents and determine their values. We also have specialists who can assist you for a reasonable fee.

Yes, if you take Transit cover, you will have cover if the vehicle carrying the goods is in an accident and the goods are damaged or stolen.

We cover your goods on a new for old basis, which means that when your items are stolen, we replace them with similar, brand-new items. It is therefore important that all Sums Insured include VAT

You then carry part of the risk, should there be a loss. This is called the Average Clause.

This universal insurance rule stipulates that whatever % of the total goods is insured, in the event of a claim, the same % of the claimed value will be reimbursed by the insurer. If you insure 90% of your goods, when a claim occurs, only 90% of your claim will be paid. E.g. if a Sum Insured was R1 000 000 and should in fact be R1 500 000, you would have to bear 1/3 of any loss yourself. Assuming a loss of R600 000 occurred, the settlement would be R400 000 and the balance of R200 000 would be for your own account. It is therefore essential that the sums insured on your policy reflect the correct Replacement Value (new for old).

It is wise to advise the insurance company of additional items and keep invoices and valuations in case of a claim.

Claims

You should report an accident, or theft to the police within 24 hours. Claims must be submitted within 30 days of the occurrence.

The insurer needs correct information in order to cost the claim on the correct replacement make and model. You need to obtain quotations for items being claimed. All the information obtained assists us in validating the claim and thereby speeding up the process.

The choice of any service provider rests with the insurer, as they have established a selected panel of service providers whose work is guaranteed. You can elect to choose your own repairer, but the insurer cannot guarantee the quality of their workmanship.

Excess Payments

The amount of the excess (also known as First Amount Payable) is the uninsured portion of your loss, for which you are responsible. It is payable irrespective who is to blame for the loss. The excess is intended to discourage claiming for minor losses and also to maintain premiums at affordable levels. The excess may be recoverable from the third party (other party at fault) and insurers will try to recover your excess and their claim costs.

This will give you the benefit of a lower premium.

You are always liable for the excess since the insurer does not place blame, as criteria in order to determine whether you need to pay an excess or not. The insurers’ legal department will attempt to recover your excess from the third party who caused the accident, but the recovery is not guaranteed. It can be a lengthy process if the other party disputes their liability, or if the insurer has to trace them, or follow up on missing information.

Premium Payments

No, insurers only work with debit order payments, so that they can ensure your premiums are allocated on time and to avoid a delay in assisting you on any incidents.

You have a grace period of at least 15 days in which to pay premiums that were returned by your bank. You can leave the money in your account and we / the insurer will re-submit the debit order automatically and this ensures that you have continuous cover.

Your premiums are paid in advance, so if you pay on the 1st of the month, you have cover for that month. We / the insurer can collect your premium on any set day you choose within the month and we will collect your premiums on that day each month. We / the insurer cannot double debit you for premiums that should have been paid in the previous month. If your premium is not paid for that month, you will not be covered.

No, it will not since your premium is guaranteed for a year. Your cover is reviewed annually and the premium is adjusted on your portfolio as a whole, taking into account your claims experience.