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Elephant Car Insurance - Automatic Renewal
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# 1
Total Chunk
Old 20-09-2010, 10:35 AM
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Thumbs down Elephant Car Insurance - Automatic Renewal

Thought I'd toss a warning out to anyone who has car insurance with Elephant.

Last year OH took car insurance out with Elephant. When we got the policy through it said that the policy was for only 10 months instead of 12. #fail

I phoned them up and told them this was unacceptable and they agreed to extend the insurance to 12 months at no extra charge as at no point were we told that it was a 10 month policy.

Last week the insurance was up for renewal and we got a cheaper quote which we went with.

Imagine my horror when I saw that they had taken over £400 without warning or authorisation from OH's bank account yesterday!

They refused to refund the money until we could prove that we had valid insurance. In my mind, this is none of their business. Not having insurance is a police matter and not something they should be allowed to play a hand in trying to enforce.

We're getting the money back in the next 3-5 days but I think this is far too long as it should never have been taken in the first place. Even their representative admitted that this 'automatic renewal' wasn't clear enough in the T&Cs.

Has anyone ever confronted an insurance company for this disgraceful way of operating? Were you successful in getting a complaint upheld?

We will be complaining directly to Elephant and to our bank but if we don't get suitable apologies/acknowledgement for their actions then we are prepared to take it to the financial ombudsman. The money they took was basically this month's rent and we're lucky that we've been able to make other arrangements to cover this.
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# 2
realised
Old 20-09-2010, 12:00 PM
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I had car insurance with elephant last year... I was always well aware that it was auto renewal (in their t&c's somewhere - was clear enough for me) and before they auto renewed, they sent me another letter informing me my insurance was due for renewl on so and so date and if I had any problems with the renewal quote, to give them a call.

I actually did find a cheaper quote elsewhere and called them up, although they couldn't beat the quote I had received, they got pretty close to matching it.

I think they do a 10 month policy for people who want to get their no claims quicker. I had the option of both 10 month and 12 month as I had no no claims when starting out with them

Ive had nothing but good experiences from elephant and wouldnt hesitate to go with them again in the future
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# 3
freddi
Old 20-09-2010, 12:24 PM
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Direct Line do that as well and it had on my renewal letter that unless I phoned to tell them I did not want my insurance renewed it would renew automatically.
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# 4
Taiko
Old 20-09-2010, 12:35 PM
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Indeed, Elephant also sent through the auto-renewal thing to me. Luckily, their quote was the cheapest, so had no problems with this. Has been the case for a few years now, too.
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# 5
corbyboy
Old 20-09-2010, 1:09 PM
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I think they offer 10 month policies so you can accrue a no claims bonus more quickly. It's usually an option though. However, I am not sure if other companies accept a no claims bonus that was accrued in just 10 months.
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# 6
olias
Old 20-09-2010, 1:32 PM
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AFAIK all my insurances are automatic renewal - house, car, pet. I always assumed it was standard practice. They all send a renewal notice out about a month before it's due so I have the option of looking elsewhere for a cheaper quote - which I usually do.

I personally like it as it means if there is an oversight on my part, or I am away on hols or something, my insurances won't lapse with potentially devastating consequences.

Olias
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# 7
Sooler
Old 20-09-2010, 1:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Total Chunk View Post
In my mind, this is none of their business. Not having insurance is a police matter and not something they should be allowed to play a hand in trying to enforce.
It's a all other road users and pedestrians etc. matter

You wouldn't want to be be involved in any accident where the other driver had 'forgotten' to renew their insurance.

May be an inconvenience for the policy holder but good for everyone else.
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# 8
Badger_Lady
Old 20-09-2010, 1:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sooler View Post
It's a all other road users and pedestrians etc. matter

You wouldn't want to be be involved in any accident where the other driver had 'forgotten' to renew their insurance.

May be an inconvenience for the policy holder but good for everyone else.
I believe it's more a matter of putting the cancellation through as "double-insured". If the OP has no insurance, and the auto-renew is legitimate due to OP signing up to T's and C's, then they have a perfect right to charge him/her for cancellation.

However, the guys are Elephant are being helpful by putting it through as double-insurance instead, so they can drop the policy in favour of someone else without making the charges.

They're essentially doing some extra work for the OP and waiving the charges in order to appease them.

You've got a good deal there, OP
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# 9
Hermia
Old 20-09-2010, 5:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by realised View Post
I had car insurance with elephant last year... I was always well aware that it was auto renewal (in their t&c's somewhere - was clear enough for me) and before they auto renewed, they sent me another letter informing me my insurance was due for renewl on so and so date and if I had any problems with the renewal quote, to give them a call.
Same here. I think I actually got two letters telling me the insurance was going to be renewed on a particular date.

When it comes to insurance I think it's a good idea to check whether they have auto renewal when you take the policy out as it's so common now.
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# 10
scotsman4th
Old 20-09-2010, 6:32 PM
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Again 1 for elephant. They informed me in plenty of time with my new quote, telling me yet again it would renew automatically.
You never got a letter giving you a new quote? Telling you that if you were happy to renew you didnt need to do anything? Probably had an insurance certificate in it? (that they'll want back now?)

Just to add, I didnt renew with them either. Told them not to autorenew and went elsewhere.
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# 11
eilidh_s
Old 20-09-2010, 9:23 PM
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I got a letter from them a few weeks before auto-renewal with a new quote which gave me plenty of time to shop around for a better one. Couldn't find one so let the auto-renewal go ahead but there was plenty of warning for me to cancel it if I wanted.

I have never had any problems with them apart from once when I initially got my car, it had to go into my brothers name as I was using his old car for the scrappage deal, anyway I took out 2 weeks insurance with my brother as named owner then when the two weeks were up I had changed the car to my name so took out new insurance. A couple of weeks later they phoned to say there was two insurance policies on my car, I told them that the first one in my brothers name was only for two weeks and according to the cert had expired already, I hadn't paid anything extra to have it extended but it had carried on, on their system for some reason. I then checked my bank account the next day and they had refunded me for the two weeks that my brother had the insurance so I basically got it for free!!
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# 12
hoyles10
Old 20-09-2010, 9:38 PM
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I got a letter about 5 weeks before my renewal and another letter about 2 weeks before asking me to confirm the payment details are still the same from last year.

In the past when i've changed insurance i've let the company know i'm leaving them and contacted my bank to cancel any payment's that may be set up for them as extra back-up in case the company don't cancel the policy.
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# 13
barvid
Old 20-09-2010, 11:22 PM
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> at no point were we told that it was a 10 month policy.

Don't believe that for a second.

> Imagine my horror when I saw that they had taken over £400 without warning or authorisation from OH's bank account yesterday!

Don't believe that either. What you mean is that you signed up for a policy with an auto renewal (tip - try reading the T&Cs) and when they sent you the renewal quote you didn't tell them you didn't want it, so the policy was renewed.

Imagine your shock when you realised it was actually your fault, not theirs...
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# 14
Laz123
Old 21-09-2010, 9:57 AM
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I think elephant insurance are the nicest and lovliest people in the cosmos and everyone should use them.
This is a help website....If you haven't got anything constructive to say why say it?
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# 15
charlesworth82
Old 21-09-2010, 5:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laz123 View Post
I think elephant insurance are the nicest and lovliest people in the cosmos and everyone should use them.
you work there?

Yeah think this is standard for most companies now. is annoying when they dont remind you though (Virgin gym!!!!!)
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# 16
deanos
Old 21-09-2010, 6:12 PM
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M+S also do it but it did say on the renewal quote just to contact them if you didn't want to auto renew which i did
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# 17
CD77
Old 21-09-2010, 10:40 PM
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Thumbs down donkey.co.uk

Started cover with these donkeys 2 months ago. Within 3 weeks they had added Hire Car cover to my policy and charged me without my consent.

I then complained and was astounded when they decided to cancel my policy.

I chose elephant.co.uk based on price, I shouldn't have.

As the old saying goes, "You get what you pay for". Don't expect a quality service from elephant.co.uk. Shocking definition of service and they wouldn't know the meaning of the word 'quality'.
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# 18
Total Chunk
Old 22-09-2010, 5:26 PM
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Half of you lot work for Elephant methinks!

We never had any correspondence through the post to say that they would be automatically renewing or even that the policy was up for renewal.

We didn't have a certificate through the post or anything, the money wet out 6 days after the policy had apparently expired.

We had one email a month before renewal with no mention of auto renewal.

Our fault? No! If you expect people to remember the small print one year later then I think that's asking rather a lot!


@Olias auto renewing isn't very 'money saving'
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# 19
MothballsWallet
Old 22-09-2010, 5:45 PM
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I think most insurers auto renew - the brands operated by, say, Budget Insurance do (I know, I worked there for a few weeks); other insurance companies are available. Some of them may see it as a nice little earner for them as well.
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# 20
Laz123
Old 23-09-2010, 9:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charlesworth82 View Post
you work there?
No, I'm being sarky. I find it irritating when someone posts on these forums with a complaint, then you get a lot of prats posting to say how wonderful the company is and they've never had any problems.

Why take the time and trouble? Go get a life is my answer.
This is a help website....If you haven't got anything constructive to say why say it?
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