Lemonade home insurance - how fair are these terms?

gwapenut
gwapenut Posts: 1,324
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edited 11 October 2023 at 8:03AM in Insurance & life assurance
They seem to have great reviews, but having ploughed through the colloquial language in their policy document, amongst all the waffle about not insuring your pride after a theft etc, I see what look like some very worrying paragraphs.

Are they being unreasonable, or is this normal?

"It is your responsibility to prove any loss. We will ask you to prove the value of your damaged stuff, such as original receipts, invoices, bank or credit card statements, as well as valuations dated before the item was insured. You also have to prove that you own the item by providing photos, videos or other details showing that it was still in good condition when you purchased this policy."

"We may also ask you to take other reasonable steps to ensure we have complete and truthful accounts of the loss and its circumstances. If you report a claim to us within the first 30 days of this policy, we will require additional evidence. For example, if you break your TV only 3 days after your policy was activated, you have to provide us with proof such as photos or videos showing that the TV was still working between the date you got this policy and the date the damage occurred. "

Perhaps it is just bad english - maybe instead of "We will ask you to prove the value of your damaged stuff" they mean "we may ask you to prove the value, unless it's really old or of low value and you obviously cannot correlate every tea spoon with every receipt or credit card statement".

But for a legal document, the grammar is bad. "We will ask you to prove the value of your damaged stuff, such as original receipts". NO. My original stuff is not items such as original receipts, it is the proof of purchase which is original receipts. "We will ask you to prove the value of your damaged stuff, by producing evidence such as original receipts" would be better. I know this is pedantic, but I would expect a legal policy document to be written using tip-top english.

And as for having to go round videoing every electromechanical item working after the policy starts .... really? I know there can be accidental damage fraud, but if you're coming from an existing policy with accidental damage cover, this is an unnecessary restriction.

Comments

  • user1977
    user1977 Posts: 13,396
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    I have doubts about how enforceable it would be, but it's not a great start...
  • DullGreyGuy
    DullGreyGuy Posts: 9,202
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    Remember they are a US company and drafting in US contracts is very different to the UK... no legal need for there to be just common practice. Look at a Leasehold agreement and you'll see what modern US contracts frequently look like and the language they use. 

    The point as you say, is reasonable steps. Given you cannot go back in time its not reasonable to ask for something that doesn't exist however it is reasonable to show you had an existing policy that would have covered it in full had the incident happened earlier than the inception of this policy. 

    I can understand it's not a comfortable position to be in but generally these sorts of clauses are not strictly applied when it comes to claim stage and a more pragmatic approach is taken. Its when you get the claim for theft where the insured lives in a LA property, on benefits, the loss adjuster visits and sees most items are old, damaged etc but the insured says the thieves only stole their brand new TV, camera and watch which they dont have receipts for and are all just under the £1,500 single article limit. These clauses are then applied because the story just doesn't hand together and it's easier to decline the claim on lack of evidence than prove fraud. (Same way as police will often go for a speeding charge than a driving without due care (at least according to a relative who was a traffic cop) because its a much easier charge to get to stick. 
  • gwapenut
    gwapenut Posts: 1,324
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    edited 12 October 2023 at 8:39AM
    Luckily I've not taken out the policy, I'm giving it a very wide berth. I clarified it with them by email and they said receipts aren't necessary as long as I have a photo with the things in the background. Like I have that for all my old DIY tools, and even if I did, like I'd want to spend my time trawling through tens of thousands of photos to find it!

    I accept the point about them being in the USA, but there of all places things would be run past a lawyer, and a lawyer should ensure the english is correct.
  • DullGreyGuy
    DullGreyGuy Posts: 9,202
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    gwapenut said:
    Luckily I've not taken out the policy, I'm giving it a very wide berth. I clarified it with them by email and they said receipts aren't necessary as long as I have a photo with the things in the background. Like I have that for all my old DIY tools, and even if I did, like I'd want to spend my time trawling through tens of thousands of photos to find it!

    I accept the point about them being in the USA, but there of all places things would be run past a lawyer, and a lawyer should ensure the english is correct.
    People who write policy books often are lawyers, at least the terms and conditions rather than the fluffy front bit, especially when you get into commercial insurance.

    If you aren't willing to spend the time to find evidence you owned things then it's probably not worth your time making a claim.

    As stated, it really comes down to the whole story... you have a garage full of DIY tools and you claim your drill and jigsaw that were both 10 years old have gone then it'll probably be accepted. You live in a studio flat smaller than the average garage, work as a call centre agent, have no DIY tools at all but claim you're 3 month old DeWalt power tools have been stolen then the inability to evidence ownership is going to be taken more seriously. 
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