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Damages caused by contractor

ripplyuk
ripplyuk Posts: 2,885
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I live in a council house so these are council contractors, not employed by me. They have caused extensive damages over the years, including flooding the house twice; reversing into my car and driving off leaving £3K of damage; breaking roof tiles; ruining electrical equipment with plaster dust; blasting all the gravel out of the garden into the drain etc. Also smaller things like splattering my car with black fence paint and leaving tar all over the carpet. The latest visit was a plumber changing the bath taps. Instead of removing the bath panel, he kicked his foot through it and tore it apart. He also ripped the flooring and flooded the kitchen below. 

Most of the damage I have paid to fix myself. With the car, I used an accident management company and the contractor paid up once high court proceedings were issued. I did not want to use my own insurance because I knew premiums would rise. I did inform my insurer about the incident ‘for information only’ and despite not claiming, my premiums almost doubled. 

I contacted the council about the damage from this recent contractor and they have sent me a public liability claim form, which would be claiming from the council’s insurance, not the contractor themselves. This form asks for details of my own home insurance. Do I have to give them these details? I do not want to claim from my own insurance and have to pay higher premiums. If I do that every time these contractors cause damage, I will quickly become uninsurable. Also, I only have contents insurance and I do not think it covers damage caused by tradesmen that I allow to work in my house. Since this is not my property, I cannot refuse to allow these contractors access. 

Are there any other options? Would it be better to use the small claims court? 
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Comments

  • user1977
    user1977 Posts: 13,376
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    If you don't think your own insurance covers you then obviously you wouldn't be claiming against it anyway? So I'm not sure what you're worried about. If you don't have relevant insurance then just tell the council that.
  • ripplyuk
    ripplyuk Posts: 2,885
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    user1977 said:
    If you don't think your own insurance covers you then obviously you wouldn't be claiming against it anyway? So I'm not sure what you're worried about. If you don't have relevant insurance then just tell the council that.
    There are certain things that might be covered by my own insurance. Things that I can’t prove were damaged by the contractors. Eg: the damage to the garden looked like burglary/vandalism until my neighbour told me a contractor did it. I would like to avoid using my own insurance at all but the wording on this form makes it sound like I have to. 
  • user1977
    user1977 Posts: 13,376
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    ripplyuk said:
    user1977 said:
    If you don't think your own insurance covers you then obviously you wouldn't be claiming against it anyway? So I'm not sure what you're worried about. If you don't have relevant insurance then just tell the council that.
    There are certain things that might be covered by my own insurance. Things that I can’t prove were damaged by the contractors. Eg: the damage to the garden looked like burglary/vandalism until my neighbour told me a contractor did it. I would like to avoid using my own insurance at all but the wording on this form makes it sound like I have to. 
    But if you know it wasn't burglary then you don't submit a claim saying it was burglary....
  • MeteredOut
    MeteredOut Posts: 1,124
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    Notifying the OPs insurance could increase their future premiums even if no claim is made. The premium is based on risk and if the OP has a history of contractors causing damage, that increase risk of a claim could result in a higher future premium.
  • ripplyuk
    ripplyuk Posts: 2,885
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    user1977 said:
    ripplyuk said:
    user1977 said:
    If you don't think your own insurance covers you then obviously you wouldn't be claiming against it anyway? So I'm not sure what you're worried about. If you don't have relevant insurance then just tell the council that.
    There are certain things that might be covered by my own insurance. Things that I can’t prove were damaged by the contractors. Eg: the damage to the garden looked like burglary/vandalism until my neighbour told me a contractor did it. I would like to avoid using my own insurance at all but the wording on this form makes it sound like I have to. 
    But if you know it wasn't burglary then you don't submit a claim saying it was burglary....
    Exactly. But the contractors never admit causing damage so who do I claim from? This public liability form asks for details of my own insurance so it’s likely my own insurers will be dragged into this at some point. I’d like to avoid that but I’m not sure how. 
  • user1977
    user1977 Posts: 13,376
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    Notifying the OPs insurance could increase their future premiums even if no claim is made. The premium is based on risk and if the OP has a history of contractors causing damage, that increase risk of a claim could result in a higher future premium.
    They may need to declare the incident(s) anyway at renewal even if they don't make a claim.
  • user1977
    user1977 Posts: 13,376
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    ripplyuk said:
    user1977 said:
    ripplyuk said:
    user1977 said:
    If you don't think your own insurance covers you then obviously you wouldn't be claiming against it anyway? So I'm not sure what you're worried about. If you don't have relevant insurance then just tell the council that.
    There are certain things that might be covered by my own insurance. Things that I can’t prove were damaged by the contractors. Eg: the damage to the garden looked like burglary/vandalism until my neighbour told me a contractor did it. I would like to avoid using my own insurance at all but the wording on this form makes it sound like I have to. 
    But if you know it wasn't burglary then you don't submit a claim saying it was burglary....
    Exactly. But the contractors never admit causing damage so who do I claim from? This public liability form asks for details of my own insurance so it’s likely my own insurers will be dragged into this at some point. I’d like to avoid that but I’m not sure how. 
    You claim from the party responsible. You (obviously) don't need to wait for them to admit liability!

    I expect they ask for your insurer's details to check you're not pocketing a payout from the council as well as getting paid by your insurance.
  • ripplyuk
    ripplyuk Posts: 2,885
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    user1977 said:
    ripplyuk said:
    user1977 said:
    ripplyuk said:
    user1977 said:
    If you don't think your own insurance covers you then obviously you wouldn't be claiming against it anyway? So I'm not sure what you're worried about. If you don't have relevant insurance then just tell the council that.
    There are certain things that might be covered by my own insurance. Things that I can’t prove were damaged by the contractors. Eg: the damage to the garden looked like burglary/vandalism until my neighbour told me a contractor did it. I would like to avoid using my own insurance at all but the wording on this form makes it sound like I have to. 
    But if you know it wasn't burglary then you don't submit a claim saying it was burglary....
    Exactly. But the contractors never admit causing damage so who do I claim from? This public liability form asks for details of my own insurance so it’s likely my own insurers will be dragged into this at some point. I’d like to avoid that but I’m not sure how. 
    You claim from the party responsible. You (obviously) don't need to wait for them to admit liability!

    I expect they ask for your insurer's details to check you're not pocketing a payout from the council as well as getting paid by your insurance.
    Ah, that makes sense. 

    Is it better to claim on their public liability insurance or use the small claims court? 
  • eskbanker
    eskbanker Posts: 29,938
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    ripplyuk said:
    user1977 said:
    ripplyuk said:
    user1977 said:
    ripplyuk said:
    user1977 said:
    If you don't think your own insurance covers you then obviously you wouldn't be claiming against it anyway? So I'm not sure what you're worried about. If you don't have relevant insurance then just tell the council that.
    There are certain things that might be covered by my own insurance. Things that I can’t prove were damaged by the contractors. Eg: the damage to the garden looked like burglary/vandalism until my neighbour told me a contractor did it. I would like to avoid using my own insurance at all but the wording on this form makes it sound like I have to. 
    But if you know it wasn't burglary then you don't submit a claim saying it was burglary....
    Exactly. But the contractors never admit causing damage so who do I claim from? This public liability form asks for details of my own insurance so it’s likely my own insurers will be dragged into this at some point. I’d like to avoid that but I’m not sure how. 
    You claim from the party responsible. You (obviously) don't need to wait for them to admit liability!

    I expect they ask for your insurer's details to check you're not pocketing a payout from the council as well as getting paid by your insurance.
    Ah, that makes sense. 

    Is it better to claim on their public liability insurance or use the small claims court? 
    A judge would take a pretty dim view of a case being brought to court without any attempt to resolve using the defendant's standard recommended process!
  • RefluentBeans
    RefluentBeans Posts: 854
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    eskbanker said:
    ripplyuk said:
    user1977 said:
    ripplyuk said:
    user1977 said:
    ripplyuk said:
    user1977 said:
    If you don't think your own insurance covers you then obviously you wouldn't be claiming against it anyway? So I'm not sure what you're worried about. If you don't have relevant insurance then just tell the council that.
    There are certain things that might be covered by my own insurance. Things that I can’t prove were damaged by the contractors. Eg: the damage to the garden looked like burglary/vandalism until my neighbour told me a contractor did it. I would like to avoid using my own insurance at all but the wording on this form makes it sound like I have to. 
    But if you know it wasn't burglary then you don't submit a claim saying it was burglary....
    Exactly. But the contractors never admit causing damage so who do I claim from? This public liability form asks for details of my own insurance so it’s likely my own insurers will be dragged into this at some point. I’d like to avoid that but I’m not sure how. 
    You claim from the party responsible. You (obviously) don't need to wait for them to admit liability!

    I expect they ask for your insurer's details to check you're not pocketing a payout from the council as well as getting paid by your insurance.
    Ah, that makes sense. 

    Is it better to claim on their public liability insurance or use the small claims court? 
    A judge would take a pretty dim view of a case being brought to court without any attempt to resolve using the defendant's standard recommended process!
    Agree with this and I would also think that it’s quicker to claim through the council rather than small claims. 
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