I think my insurer is trying to scam me

Noctover
Noctover Posts: 21
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edited 23 October 2023 at 3:48PM in Motoring
This might be quite long winded but I'll try to keep it brief.

In April 2021 i was in a minor accident. Damage done to both cars. The other person was at fault; i did not put a claim in but stated i would be defending a claim against me which was required, as they put a claim in stating i was at fault.

I was confident submitting the dashcam footage, however to my shock my insurer disagreed. I then submitted 3 additional pieces of evidence. In total i submitted:

  • Footage of the crash
  • Footage driving back down that road, using the lane the other car as in to show where they SHOULD have gone
  • An aerial view of the road with lines showing the road layout
  • a text message from them denying ever being in the "Red" lane as they knew by being in that lane they would be liable, they did not know i had a dashcam showing them in the left lane when they stated this.
After several weeks of all my evidence going in to a blackhole and arguing, they finally got it all and said "I can see where you are coming from..." as it was pretty cut and dry from this point.

The next email a few days later stated "We have sent all your evidence off to the insurer and will let you know of the outcome, and if we will need to fight it in court" etc then i heard nothing for months.

On the 25th of November, 2021 15:30 i got this email:

We are writing to you about the car insurance policy you hold with us.

It has come to our attention that your Claim from 15/04/2021 has now been settled on your policy, due to this we have been able to re-instate your no claims bonus. You now have 7 years. We can confirm due to this a refund of £10.41 is due which we will attempt to credit to the card/account used to pay the majority of the premium.

So, great... Common sense prevailed case closed, my claim was set to "closed" and i heard nothing of it again...Until 2 days ago.

2 Days ago i get an email, simply saying:

This claim has now been closed. Your No Claims Bonus has been reduced in accordance with the terms and conditions of your policy, as stated in your Policy Booklet.

Obviously confused, i contacted them (today...As that entire team apparently does not work on the weekend...They can send bad news emails but not take calls on a Saturday apparently...)

They stated i should have been informed that the case was reopened earlier this month (which i was not) and that they are now going for 50/50 blame yet again...On a case, closed...2 years ago.

When asked why this relic of the past has been brought back up they could not say, they had no new evidence no reasoning. They are now looking at slapping my no claims discount from 9 years to 3 out of the blue.

Furthermore, i checked my portal on Saturday, Sunday and this morning, the claim was still sitting under "Closed" as of 10:11am this morning, its only following this mornings call that they have now moved the claim back to "Open". Given that it was apparently reopened earlier this month, this seems very fishy...

I've been with them for 9 years. Not because i'm loyal, but because the renewal price has always been cheaper, same or so close that it wasn't worth switching, however now i'm paying the price for that.

I'm no conspiracy theorist, but only the insurance company benefit from slapping me with such a substantial NCD reduction, under the premise i will simply renew with them later (which i most certainly will not be now!)

To peel this onion of injustice...I am now potentially losing 6 years of no claims, from an accident that happened over 2 years ago and was officially "closed" by the insurance company 1 month shy of 2 years ago..Out of the blue due to it being reopened, without informing me for reasons that have not been given while my car sits outside still with tape on the wheel arch from an accident that was not my fault while there's is repaired, and their no claims protected. Ironic thing is, I'm the only one that didn't even make a claim.

I wont be taking this sitting down and wanted to know if anyone had any advice.

Thanks.

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Comments

  • Car_54
    Car_54 Posts: 8,145
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    The difference between 9 and 3 years is probably not much. Any increase after 4 years is generally very small.

    If it's settled 50/50, the other party's NCD will also be affected.

    As you thought the other party was at fault, why didn't you claim for your own damage?

  • Noctover
    Noctover Posts: 21
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    My car is an old runaround, for the cosmetic damage its really not worth the £350 excess id pay to have it repaired. 

    The other party has protected noclaims so there would be unaffected.
  • DullGreyGuy
    DullGreyGuy Posts: 9,202
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    Given annoyed customers tend to switch insurers its not a very good tactic to attempt to get more money out of a customer.

    Haven't seen the evidence so cannot give a view on liability but for a claim that doesn't include injuries there is a legal limit of 6 years (England & Wales, 5 in Scotland) to make a claim and therefore its very possible your insurers were denying liability, the Third Party Insurers (TPI) never accepted that but just went quiet so your insurers closed their files (we aren't very courtious to each other to say we are dropping allegations etc). The TP or TPI could then have refound the matter (customer complaint, old mail gets resurfaced, someone runs a report on open claims with no movement in X months) and so contacted your insurers and the file is reopened.

    Claims teams are often split into two (ignoring fraud) or more sections, some are customer facing and do claims registration, deal with your vehicle damage etc and the others deal with the third party be that paying their claim, recovering your losses or anything in-between. This second set are seen as "technical" and no, they typically officially work 9-5 Mon-Fri as they aren't "call centre" and you try getting hold of a solicitor at 17:05 on a Friday and will see how few are still answering phones. 


    If you aren't going to fight it then make sure they roll the NCD forward for the year(s) since the incident where you have been claim free again. 
  • Noctover
    Noctover Posts: 21
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    Interesting about the "roll NCD on" i asked about this on the phone, they said because i had 7 at the time they are going to bring it down to 5 then remove 2, to make it 3, ignoring the 2 additional years since that time.
  • Car_54
    Car_54 Posts: 8,145
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    Noctover said:
    My car is an old runaround, for the cosmetic damage its really not worth the £350 excess id pay to have it repaired. 

    The other party has protected noclaims so there would be unaffected.
    If the other party was at fault there would have been no excess to pay.
  • facade
    facade Posts: 6,909
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    Car_54 said:
    Noctover said:
    My car is an old runaround, for the cosmetic damage its really not worth the £350 excess id pay to have it repaired. 

    The other party has protected noclaims so there would be unaffected.
    If the other party was at fault there would have been no excess to pay.

    If the third party were at fault and the OP claimed directly from the third party then there would be no excess to pay.
    If the OP claimed on his own policy then he would have had to pay the excess and claim it from the third party himself (unless he had "legal expenses cover").  As it is now 50:50 the third party would have paid 50% of the excess.


    Depending on what the OP signed when he said he wasn't making a claim for his own vehicle it may still be possible to claim for his own damage, and there is nothing to lose as the incident resulted in a claim against his policy, it won't affect anything to make it bigger.

    On a low value car it would probably be a total loss of current undamaged market value, less the excess, with half the excess to claim from the third party, so market value less £175, less the salvage as I assume the OP wants to keep the car.




    I want to go back to The Olden Days, when every single thing that I can think of was better.....

    (except air quality and Medical Science ;))
  • DullGreyGuy
    DullGreyGuy Posts: 9,202
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    Noctover said:
    Interesting about the "roll NCD on" i asked about this on the phone, they said because i had 7 at the time they are going to bring it down to 5 then remove 2, to make it 3, ignoring the 2 additional years since that time.
    In most cases 5+ NCD goes to 3 years upon a fault or part fault claim but that was 2 years ago so depending on how many renewals you've had since then it should now be 4 or 5 years at next renewal.
  • Bigphil1474
    Bigphil1474 Posts: 2,294
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    As above, sounds like they are trying to reduce your NCB twice for the same incident. If you had seven at the time and they remove 2 due to the incident, then you should now be back to 7 after 2 years additional no claims years. Sounds more like incompetence than a scam.
  • DullGreyGuy
    DullGreyGuy Posts: 9,202
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    As above, sounds like they are trying to reduce your NCB twice for the same incident. If you had seven at the time and they remove 2 due to the incident, then you should now be back to 7 after 2 years additional no claims years. Sounds more like incompetence than a scam.
    Because how the NCD for 5+ years tends to work (1% per year up to a max of 9 years) almost all insurer drop to 3 years for 5+ irrespective if you were on 5, 7, 15 or 30 years. If it was a straight drop 2 years and you had 30 years NCD then you could have 11 fault claims before the NCD actually reduced in terms of percentage and even then some would still be giving max NCD for 8 years.
  • Bigphil1474
    Bigphil1474 Posts: 2,294
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    DullGrey - The OP said "because i had 7 at the time they are going to bring it down to 5 then remove 2, to make it 3". This sounds like they would have reduced it from 7 to 5 for the claim. Not sure what the other 2 were for. IF they meant they were bringing it down from 7 to 3 (which fits your comments) for the claim, then he should still be on 5 now. 
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