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  • FIRST POST
    • RBW
    • By RBW 5th Jul 18, 3:03 PM
    • 2Posts
    • 0Thanks
    RBW
    Hastings Direct - Refused insurance because of my occupation.
    • #1
    • 5th Jul 18, 3:03 PM
    Hastings Direct - Refused insurance because of my occupation. 5th Jul 18 at 3:03 PM
    Insurance refused by Hastings Direct because of occupation.
    There is some advice on the Hastings Direct website entitled “How to get cheaper car insurance”. I wish I had read this advice before applying to be added to my partner’s car insurance policy with Hastings. I would have realised the importance of the questions about occupation.

    One bit of information in particular would have been useful to me before applying and this is reproduced below from their website:-

    Alter your job description
    Sometimes, changing your job description (lawfully) will lower your insurance. Money Saving Expert explains insurance for an illustrator is typically cheaper than for an artist, while a PA is cheaper than a secretary.
    The MSE site does not allow me to post the link to this advice.

    I need some advice on how best to proceed as my application was refused because of my occupation. I know that Hastings Direct staff contribute regularly to this forum and their advice would be welcomed. We want to do this honestly and above board and we are well aware that trying to be too clever can easily backfire and have long lasting consequences.

    This is the first time I have ever applied for online car insurance and was unaware how crucial the description of my occupation would be. I work as a web designer for a theatre. I work in the office and do not use a car for work. I produce and edit digital content for the theatre website and my job title reflects this – Digital Content Producer. Essentially, I am a web designer.

    On the online application form I simply put Producer as my job title as that was the only description on offer that seemed close to my work title. The online system does not allow users to insert their exact job title. You must pick a near match. Some of the content that I put on the website comprises video clips which I edit. On being asked to choose the industry I worked in I selected Film Production. It, perhaps, was not the most sensible choice but I was not aware it would be highly significant.

    At the completion of the application I was instructed to telephone Hastings Direct which I did. I was told that the entertainment industry was considered high risk and that they did not offer insurance to people working in this industry. I was told that my application was therefore refused because of my occupation. I did try and correct the situation and tell them that I worked in a theatre but the matter was closed by this point.

    Many people who do the type of work that I do would describe themselves as working in the IT industry. I have since learnt that your industry definition for many insurance companies is determined by where (place) you work rather than what you do.

    I do find it strange that all staff including secondary and ancillary staff are considered in the broad industry description and that all are therefore considered a high risk. I work in an office – I am not an entertainer. On this basis the 35,000 staff working for the BBC would be considered high risk and refused insurance from Hastings no matter whether they were a cleaner, an electrician, the staff nurse or an administrative assistant. This can’t be correct or sensible.

    I was not aware that Hastings would not insure people working in the entertainment industry. I searched their website but could not find any reference to blanket bans on entertainment industry staff. My father contacted customer services with a general query and was told that no blanket bans existed, and that insurance was always determined on risk criteria. He also asked about my job title and after explaining my work it was confirmed that Web Designer most accurately reflected my work and that Theatre should be shown as industry (because my office is located in the theatre complex).

    The Hastings Direct website does advise applicants to refine their job descriptions and job title in order to obtain cheaper car insurance. Can this only be done once? In my case I am not trying to reduce or manipulate a quote. I am simply trying to be added to my partner’s existing policy.

    Can I apply again to be the named driver on my partner’s insurance using Web Designer as job title and Theatre as industry without being accused of quote manipulation? This is not a manipulation – it is simply a correction after taking appropriate advice.
    How is it best to approach this problem with Hastings? Any advice would be gratefully received.

    I would also like some advice on a few secondary but related matters. If I cannot be added to my partner’s car insurance, we will have to consider terminating the insurance policy and applying elsewhere. I would stress this is an option we wish to avoid as we choose Hastings because it was good cover and a good price. The insurance payment was paid in full when the policy was taken out. Do Hastings make refunds if you want to terminate the policy before the end date if we have to insure elsewhere? Secondly, if applying again to another insurer would this rejection by Hasting have to be declared and how would this affect any new application?
    Thank you
    I will look forward to your comments
    Regards
    RBW
Page 1
    • FutureGirl
    • By FutureGirl 5th Jul 18, 5:29 PM
    • 1,121 Posts
    • 465 Thanks
    FutureGirl
    • #2
    • 5th Jul 18, 5:29 PM
    • #2
    • 5th Jul 18, 5:29 PM
    If they are refusing to quote, this is different from having insurance declined or cancelled.

    I would be careful about re applying to be on the policy with a different job title as they may well see this as quote manipulation and void / cancel the whole policy. They don't have to insure everyone, and nor do they need to provide you with a reason as to why they don't want to quote you for a policy / provide you with a policy either.

    You need to check the policy documents for what cancellation fee's are applicable but if you've paid in full you should expect to receive some kind of refund, yes.
    • Zorillo
    • By Zorillo 5th Jul 18, 7:10 PM
    • 222 Posts
    • 114 Thanks
    Zorillo
    • #3
    • 5th Jul 18, 7:10 PM
    • #3
    • 5th Jul 18, 7:10 PM
    I'd dispute it's good cover, however good the price might've been.

    But it's up to them who they quote for, and if they've declined your application once it'd be foolish to try and work around it online, you might end up with a cancellation or voidance to declare which isn't worth it.

    Pick up the phone and speak to them again, explain the exact situation and see what they say. If it's no, move on.
    • angrycrow
    • By angrycrow 5th Jul 18, 9:49 PM
    • 526 Posts
    • 382 Thanks
    angrycrow
    • #4
    • 5th Jul 18, 9:49 PM
    • #4
    • 5th Jul 18, 9:49 PM
    Look at it this way a producer working in the theatre could find themselves driving actors around. The insurer won't know if this is Z list actors or A list actors. Imagine a producer having a crash with Patrick Stewart in the car and the result g loss of earnings claim which could run to millions. Producers also move expensive equipment about in their cars.

    The entertainment industry has also needed specialist insurance.
    • RBW
    • By RBW 6th Jul 18, 1:24 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    RBW
    • #5
    • 6th Jul 18, 1:24 PM
    • #5
    • 6th Jul 18, 1:24 PM
    Thank you for all the replies. You make a number of interesting points for me to consider.
    It would be useful if I could clarify a few points to clear up any misapprehensions. At the start of my posting I stated that I welcomed comments from the Hastings staff who monitor this consumer website. I fully intend to be open and transparent and always above board. I made a simple mistake in stating my occupation and industry which I wish to correct. I don't want to misrepresent my situation as I know that this can only make matters worse.
    After I get the comments from other forum users it has always been my intention to approach Hastings again and to discuss with them the best way to reapply again to be the named driver on my partner's insurance policy.
    Last edited by RBW; 06-07-2018 at 2:14 PM.
    • Quentin
    • By Quentin 6th Jul 18, 1:45 PM
    • 36,266 Posts
    • 20,526 Thanks
    Quentin
    • #6
    • 6th Jul 18, 1:45 PM
    • #6
    • 6th Jul 18, 1:45 PM
    Your partner should be doing the addition of a named driver, not you!

    Read up on Hastings reviews here and on the net and you may feel there is a silver lining to them refusing to cover you!
  • Hastings Direct company representative
    • #7
    • 16th Jul 18, 7:50 AM
    • #7
    • 16th Jul 18, 7:50 AM
    Hello,

    I'm sorry to hear about the experience you've had where your occupation and purchasing new insurance is concerned. I appreciate the confusion caused and I hope that regardless of who it is with you can or have been able to find suitable cover for your vehicle. I'm afraid that as a broker, there is little that Hastings Direct can do with regards to providing cover when the terms and conditions of the underwriter prevents this. Unfortunately the whole insurance industry acts on a worse case scenario and as a result generates premium, provides and refuses cover with this frame of mind. I appreciate it's a negative view however when you stated film production they may have thought you could be in an accident with a re known actor or damage millions of pounds worth of film equipment in an accident for example, that would have then been a complicated and expensive claim, possible one that Hastings couldn't cover you for. It's just an example, the underwriters don't know the exact details of the role so it is viewed as a high risk and not covered under their terms. I believe you have contacted the call centre to speak to the advisers. Depending on the outcome of that conversation, it may need to be a case of getting cover else where. I sincerely apologise for any inconvenience caused and I do hope you can find suitable and competitive cover soon

    Kind Regards,

    Hastings Direct Social Media Team
    Official Company Representative
    I am the official company representative of Hastings Direct. MSE has given permission for me to post in response to queries about the company, so that I can help solve issues. You can see my name on the companies with permission to post list. I am not allowed to tout for business at all. If you believe I am please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com This does NOT imply any form of approval of my company or its products by MSE"
    • Icarus01
    • By Icarus01 16th Jul 18, 8:05 AM
    • 23 Posts
    • 16 Thanks
    Icarus01
    • #8
    • 16th Jul 18, 8:05 AM
    • #8
    • 16th Jul 18, 8:05 AM
    You may be better off not going with Hastings Direct anyway. I had an awful experience with them and found that they're cheap for a reason. (one call to complaints: I couldn't get hold of them for a week, despite waiting on hold for nearly an hour each time).


    I don't think there are any 'genuine' tips & tricks for getting your insurance down, except to shop around. You have to be honest as these insurers will look for any excuse not to pay out. Back at College a friend of mine was declaring himself as a farmer (because saying he was a mechanic brought his premium up significantly) and found his insurance was void when he tried to claim.
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