View Full Version : Almost fraudulent

8th Sep 2011, 08:58
I have just now had a email from the boss/’er indoors to say that she has just checked her card statement and found that a "home insurance" company that covers a multitude of services and which we have used for some time, has renewed the annual insurance for £524 without her confirmation. She was rightly hacked off and rang them saying as a result she was cancelling the policy.

They instantly reduced it to £374.88.

Doesn't that sort of thing really get on yer tits.

8th Sep 2011, 09:07
My credit card company in India said my card had no Annual fee. Each time the card expired (to be replaced by a new one with the same number), the month after the new card arrived I'd find an annual charge on my statement. Twice I've had to call them and raise the roof. Twice I've had the fee struck off.

I've a right mind to ask them to pay for two minutes of phone time. :mad:

Standard Noise
8th Sep 2011, 09:23
What gets on my tits is the fact that these companies firmly believe that they have a god given right to re-new policies without the express consent of the policy holder and take money off your card/out of your bank account. What happened to the days when you just didn't renew an insurance policy (home, car etc) and that was that.

I had a similar problem with Admiral on a car policy last year, I sold the car the week the insurance was due to run out and as the car was picked up by the new owner on the day the policy ran out, I didn't see the need to inform the insurance company as I would just not bother renewing. By chance, I checked my credit card statement online a few days later (looking at something else) and found that Admiral had taken £360 off my card! When I rang to ask to complain and for the money back all I got from the call centre monkey was 'we do inform customers that the renewal will be processed unless you tell us not to and we feel it's better that a customer's car remains insured as it is a legal requirement to have insurance.' When I told him I wanted a refund, the guy had the cheek to tell me there would be a cancellation fee! BOOM! Standard hits the roof! Much effing & blinding, threats of legal action (telling them you'll inform Mastercard of a fraudulent transaction among other things) and a stern letter to his Chief Exec later, a full refund is promised and it duly arrived four days later.

Wucking fankers!

tony draper
8th Sep 2011, 10:19
Our Pet Insurance tried the same stroke a couple of years back just upped the monthy payment for no good reason, a angry phone call reduced it back to what it was pre letter,they are a bunch of thieving scumbags who just try it on every now and again and a lot of people will just hand over the cash without question,so they cannot lose.
Insurance companies are almost bigger scoundrels than the energy companies,almost.

Lon More
8th Sep 2011, 10:21
Our Pet Insurance tried the same stroke a couple of years back just upped the monthy payment for no good reason, a angry phone call reduced it
Threatening to unleash the JR might have had the same effect.

tony draper
8th Sep 2011, 10:28
Just done a quick calculation over the last few years we have handed over about three grand to the buggas and I think we got back about 60 quid once which actually shocked me a bit, I didnt think anybody actually got any money back,I just thought it was a kind of tax on having a Dog.
I was obliged to take out a couple on million quids worth of cover on a Contractors Liability Policy lest one on my chaps dropped a hammer on someones noggin,the policy came with a thick book, the first three hundred pages of get out clauses and the last two pages of stuff they actually covered you for.

8th Sep 2011, 11:28
Two things I always make clear at the beginning of any conversation with insurance companies etc:-

1) I do not want my contact details distributed to other organisations.

2) Any payment authorisation is for one specific premium, and not for subsequent recurrent renewal.

It usually works.

8th Sep 2011, 12:05
It usually isn't the Underwriter who renews the insurance cover, it is the Broker/Agent who works on commission and is hopeful you will go along with it, (thousands do). Unless you get into a dispute you are highly unlikely to ever be talking to the Underwriter, even then you are more likely talking to their lawyers.

Insurance is just another industry, it is not a profession. You present a risk and the Underwriter assesses it based on your personal circumstances and the actuarial evidence available, the rate produced is based on you telling the truth. If you lined up a hundred Underwriters and gave them the same risk to evaluate they would all come up with a similar price, there is no such thing as cheap insurance, only reduced cover.

I use the comparison of buying a new car. If you check out several dealers for the same model then you will get a variation of a few hundred pounds, not much more. Check out the price of a Volvo 860, for example, to a Suzuki 990 and yes, the difference will be massive. You only get what you pay for.

Insurance fraud is huge, really huge. I remember one underwriter telling me that it always amazed him how people on the cheapest of holidays always had Gucci luggage with several thousand pounds worth of cameras etc. included!

When last in UK, 1979-1989, I used a firm based in Bournemouth and their pet insurance was good cover and a no problem claims department.

The real crunch comes when the dearly loved pet of many years becomes sick and requires very expensive surgery, then all those premiums suddenly become worth it.

8th Sep 2011, 12:26
Here's what NFU mutual did to me. I won.


8th Sep 2011, 12:39
Of course you did, you were right and you were dealing with an incompetent who should not have been allowed to sign letters.

I don't support insurers 100% regardless. I had a bitter fight with them over damage to a car in 1987, caused by the hurricane in the SE England.

I won too.

8th Sep 2011, 14:50
My wife paid for the car insurance using her credit card. Towards the end of the policy period her credit card was said to be subject to a security risk it was cancelled and and a new one would be sent out. That was a right pain but no choice.

Doing a bit of research she found an insurance company that offered a better annual premium and paid up using her new card. Didn't think to tell the previous insurance company that we were not renewing because, well the card details they had would no longer work. You can imagine her surprise when she checked her new card statement to find the renewal for the old policy had been debitted.

Apparently when a renewal is presented with old card details then these are automatically transferred to the new card and these details advised to the merchant.

I seem to recall once we were a bit late in renewing our house insurance and the company said they would normally continue cover for 15 days to cover this eventuality and if after this period no renewal then cover would lapse regardless. Now what sort of nonsense is that. :mad:

You buy something in timbuctoo and that produces a raft of security alerts and all the stuff necessary to prove it was a genuine purchase and then the credit card company just rolls over all the previous card debit approvals any one of which might have caused the securty alert and card cancellation in the first place.

8th Sep 2011, 15:38
Why is this thread titled "Almost Fraudulent" ?

- You make a contract
- They vary the terms in a way which is not in the original contract.
- It's fraudulent !

YOU try varying the terms with or without telling them and see what happens !

8th Sep 2011, 20:25
Swinton, who I left a couple of years ago, phoned me to give me a home insurance quote tonight , I agreed to let them give me a quote on the phone as I nearly looked them up online today anyway, thinking they have my details so it shouldn't take long.
I then get passed to another chap who asks for my name, first line of address, which he mis hears twice, I correct him, he asks for my postcode, then repeats back the wrong house number again, I am starting to lose my patience as I am thinking why are they not just using the details on their computer. It was when the chap asked me for my contact phone number that I hung up. You called me you numpties.

8th Sep 2011, 21:18
By coincidence, I bought my new car insurance ten minutes ago via compare-the-market (I shall refer to them as CTM).

Couple of things annoyed me:

1) CTM said on their website that I could pay by calling the insurer direct, quoting my internet reference number. Not the case, I tried and they said I had to take out the policy online to get the price quoted. The insurance company also said they got a lot of telephone callers trying to pay, and that the CTM website wasn't giving the right info.
2) When I applied online, I had to check all the details I'd already put in via CTM...which had been transferred to the insurer's online forms. My claim history required a number of significant corrections and my annual mileage had been inexplicably reduced from 18000 to 14000...with the correct mileage, the premium quoted was more expansive than the original CTM quote!

I just want to buy stuff like this by talking to someone sensible on the phone...but then the price absolutely skyrockets because of their "administration costs".


EDIT: and I've just noticed that my cover is apparently not applicable if my car is parked in "an airport where aircraft take off or land" WTF?????
Phone call tomorrow I think!

Standard Noise
8th Sep 2011, 21:40
Well you'll just have to go and work at an airport where aircraft don't take off or land*, won't you?

*like Cardiff.:E

8th Sep 2011, 22:23
Just had a similar problem with Churchill. (Oh yus!). They sent a renewal notice some couple of weeks ago. Didn't like the price so did a confused dot com. Went back to Churchill and, with a couple of amendments, their price was even worse. Told the guy I wasn't interested so he said automatic renewal was taken off my account and, if I wanted to renew with them, I would have to call them again. Noticed a usual monthly amount was taken from my account. Another phone call. They said this was correct due to last payment owing but said that the automatic renewal had not been cancelled but she would do it now. Received two more renewal reminders since then - one in post and one email. Today, 6 days after finish date of insurance, I get a new certificate in the post with confirmation of monthly payments etc. One more VERY angry phone call to be told automatic renewal was not cancelled, but is now (yeah!), and asking for certificate to be sent back to them with covering letter. I await the next installment of this saga.

west lakes
8th Sep 2011, 22:33
YWL went through an interesting mine field with his insurance,
After an accident last year he served a 13 month ban, found a car and started looking at insurance.
After talking through the application on the phone the certificate arrived, it was incorrect ( the sort of error where insurance companies would refuse to pay out)
Rang them, confirmed the correct details, new certificate.. a duplicate of the first

He then got serious (this is him at his most scary after a couple of years dealing with couriers and sub-contractors at work) they finally got it right and refunded £200 from the costs

8th Sep 2011, 22:59
I seem to recall once we were a bit late in renewing our house insurance and the company said they would normally continue cover for 15 days to cover this eventuality and if after this period no renewal then cover would lapse regardless. Now what sort of nonsense is that. http://images.ibsrv.net/ibsrv/res/src:www.pprune.org/get/images/smilies/censored.gif

Actually that is pretty standard with most insurers, 15 days held covered, BUT they should have warned you that your policy was expiring.

9th Sep 2011, 09:37
We've had a generally good experience with the company that advertises using a red telephone and mouse. We get a reminder saying that if we wish to renew, do nothing and it'll be automatic. I've tried comparison sites and found them a PITA, and have yet to find a competitive quote. That's for the car. Home and contents insurance we sometimes switch between bank and building society; the difference in quotation is usually minimal. I guess we've just been fortunate.

9th Sep 2011, 11:19
Had the same kind of thing with car insurance the policy was in my ex-wife's name but I had been paying so the renewal came in my name, called before the due date to tell them that we were no longer together and would not be paying off course had many letters emails and calls threatning various horrific outcomes if I did not pay took 3 months to sort and get my cash back.

9th Sep 2011, 12:10
Something to be aware of on any insurance proposal form is a tiny little box and along side it some tiny little writing that will say that, "unless you tick the box, renewals will be automatic".

The only correct measure of an insurance company is how they handle claims, not their sales policy with all the razmataz and fantastic deals they can do.

9th Sep 2011, 13:46
A few years back the Halifax took over the insurance company I used for my Buildings and Contents insurance. The policy was one of these "we'll renew and take the annual premium from your account unless you tell us otherwise" type and the Halifax said I need take no action as the policy terms remained the same.

About 15 months later I thought to myself that my policy renewal must be due. On checking my statements it became apparent that the Halifax had never taken the annual premium for the previous year and I had never noticed. When I phoned them they had the cheek to say that if I had claimed on the policy they wouldn't have paid out as I hadn't paid the premium - which they were supposed to take automatically.

Now I'm sure I would have eventually won any case if there had been a claim but needless to say I will never ever use the Halifax or any company that has any links to them ever again.

15th Sep 2011, 20:28
Found out about not being covered if I drive my car on any part of an airport where aircraft take off and land.

This of course means if I drive airside i.e. on taxiways/runways.

So it was me misinterpreting the wording, I read it as

"any part of an airport (where aircraft take off and land)" which was the actual wording.....

whereas they actually mean

"any surface at the airport which is specifically built for aircraft use"

Doh! :ugh:

18th Sep 2011, 16:52
A friend of ours put her house up for sale, got a buyer very quickly, then found just the place she wanted in just the right place.

She put the details in the hand of her solicitors, located some 100 miles away, provided as part of a "package" by her local estate agent.

The sale of her property progressed, and as the new property was empty, she was asked to take out property insurance to cover it. Fine, she said, at least I know that if I get a problem, I'll be covered on the other house.

Well, the sale of her house dropped out, 2 or more times, she still had the insurance going on the other place. Then she just felt she had to move somewhere, evidently there was some question over the title of the other property, so she thought, what the hell, I've had enough! So, finding just the place she wanted, and had sold her current property by this time, she went for what she'd just fell in love with!

This lady is a pensioner, having lost her husband some 18 months ago. Hence the move. The move is going well, in a few days she will be living in her new home.

On trying to cancel the insurance on the property she expected to move into in the first place, she finds that the insurer wants to charge her £60 to cancel the cover! She's not bought the place, never lived in it, nobody else does, but she is still paying to cover it for the next 8 months or so!!

This is diatesticle! Not only does her insurance company want a rocket up their jacksie, but her solicitor needs a wake-up call as well.

It is not likely to happen, but consider a scenario: Some scroat finds the empty house and "moves in" does all sort of damage and eventually the place does get back on the market......what's the betting that with the insurance companies "databases" that any request by a future owner on that same property would put a big black mark on our friend's slop chit!

Basically, not only should the insurance company get their just rewards, our friend's solicitor ought to get a rocket too!

Perhaps we should have a new thread, "how to get screwed by your solicitor"


18th Sep 2011, 17:43
Perhaps we should have a new thread, "how to get screwed by your solicitor"

Not necessary, MTB. Go to a solicitor, you get screwed. End of thread.

I got screwed by my family solicitors over my purchase of a concours 912 - I sued the commercial vendor since it didn't meet the Trade Descriptions Act. The family solicitors had no idea what they were doing, kept the case going for 18 months, fouled it up utterly and completely. When I complained to the regulatory body for solicitors about my family solicitors, they rejected my claim - but found that my family solicitors were guilty of another screw-up in my case of which I was unaware (and so had they been) and fined them for that.

Bunch of scavenging hyenas tearing bleeding chunks out of living victims bodies if you ask me, or am I being far too kind to them ?

19th Sep 2011, 00:53
Modtinbasher - Is it possible that the insurance company didn't realise the property was empty so are now charging the increased premium that an empty property attracts? Bit of a long shot, I know, but a cancellation fee sounds like a racket to me!

19th Sep 2011, 15:36
By "charge her 60 pounds to cancel the cover", I assume you mean they will cancel the cover and refund the balance of the premium less the 60 quid?

That's fairly standard, in my experience. You can cancel cover, but you pay a cancellation fee. (The alternative would be you can't cancel and are liable for premiums for the whole duration of the policy).

I may be missing something, but doesn't seem that big a deal?

20th Sep 2011, 14:01

I think the situation was that she paid up front for buildings cover only and it was in the region of £130 ish, so she was not going to get a lot back anyway, she's decided to take the hit.


Standard Noise
21st Sep 2011, 09:12
A few years back, we had our contents and buildings cover through our mortgage provider, they then sold their insurance arm to Zurich. All was well for a couple of years, the cover was top notch and reasonably priced even though we made one claim due to water damage. Then a renewal came through (this was two years after the claim) and they had jacked the premium up by 90%. I phoned to question it and managed to get about £40 off the premium but told them if they couldn't get close to the previous year I was offski. Found better cover with another insurer and phoned to let my current insurer that I wouldn't be renewing with them.
'We're sorry to hear that Mr Noise, there will be a £25 cancellation fee on the policy.'
'I'm not cancelling anything,' said I, 'just not renewing the existing policy.'
'Ah yes, but there's a £25 admin charge for the paperwork,' says lackwit bumpkin.
'Oh OK then,' says I 'if you want to charge me £25, go ahead, but you'll be explaining yourself to my mortgage provider when I tell them I'm leaving them because of you.'
'But Mr Noise, we are a separate company from your mortgage provider.'
'That's as maybe friend, but I have never actually signed anything with you, I was passed to you when you bought their insurance business and I'm not getting f**ked over by you just because you're now getting greedy.'

No 'cancellation/admin' fee was paid. Oh and three years later, my yearly premium still hasn't reached that old Zurich quote!

21st Sep 2011, 10:30
My credit card company in India...........................I've a right mind to ask them to pay for two minutes of phone time

Only TWO minutes !! More like two hours when I get sent to India.

22nd Sep 2011, 07:08
Excellent article in yesterday's Independent (they seem to call it 'I' now, but it was the only newspaper left at 6 o'clock in the evening, unless you count the Scum, the Sport, and the local rag with headlines like 'Councillor's cat stuck in tree.'

Mark Steel: Lost in the car insurance labyrinth

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

To sense the irrational terrifying chaos that drives the modern economy you should get someone to drive into your parked car in the middle of the night. I went on this course yesterday and it's a splendid education. It begins with the relative calm of answering the door to see the police stood before you, an image that makes anyone decent think, "Bollocks, I must have been on CCTV", or "They can't STILL be after me for the poll tax".

So I was relieved when they showed me the pile of metal and glass in the road, until I realised this meant calling the insurance company. Within an hour I had filled up several notepads with incident numbers, policy numbers, reference numbers, registration numbers and license numbers, and then I was told I'd be sent a form on which I had to draw the incident.

Why do you have to do that? Do they choose the best ones and send them to children's television to put on the wall, with captions saying: "Sent in by David of Coventry, aged 46, called 'Man trapped in burning Vauxhall Astra on A45'." Does it invalidate the claim if you don't colour it in properly? If the picture isn't clear enough do they ask you to perform the incident as a piece of modern dance?

Then it turned out my insurance company didn't deal with insurance. "We pass the policy on to Flint," they said, but Flint put it out to Markerstudy, who put it out to Crusader who put part of it out to Alps. And most of these calls involved call centres, so a 30-minute wait is followed by someone telling you "We just need you to answer some security questions. Could you give me your policy number and incident number and registration number and passport number and date of birth and mother's maiden name" until you know it's pointless because eventually they'll ask for one you don't know like: "Could you tell me your favourite breed of eagle, Mr Steel? Well if you don't know your favourite breed of eagle, we can't proceed with your claim."

One part that puzzles me is, if these insurance companies don't actually do insurance what do they do? Are they a sandwich shop that was accidentally put in the wrong section of the Yellow Pages, but kept getting requests for household and contents cover so decided they'll do a spot of brokering as a sideline?

Crusader instructed a company called Vision to call me, who said as well as dealing with the claim they'd provide a "courtesy car" which I wasn't expecting. But after 40 minutes it turned out because I was caught speeding two years ago they couldn't speak to me any more so would pass it back to Crusader who got Ai Claim Solutions to call, but after another 40 minutes they couldn't do anything either, so I rang Crusader and they put me on hold.

And honestly, while waiting they played Grandmaster Flash singing "Don't push me 'cos I'm close to the edge". When someone came back, I said "That was an excellent choice of music", and tried to explain.

"I'm sorry. What ARE you talking about?" she said.

But she did get a company called Helphire to ring. By now as I was explaining the day's events I felt I needed a chart on the wall covered in names of companies and arrows as if I was in an episode of The Wire, with little photos and a sweaty inspector snarling, "And guess who turned up as accomplice to Crusader on a deal with Vision offering fully comprehensive on a Ford Focus registered in Baltimore in '07, our friend from Claims Solutions, that's who".

Then it turned out they couldn't deal with me at all, because the car was too damaged. Maybe the next company will say: "We can't assess the damage as the vehicle isn't facing south-west."

But it's a marvellous lesson, of how modern business is owned by no one and responsible for nothing. If I get this claim dealt with, I'll sort out the eurozone, because compared with this it will be a bloody doddle.

22nd Sep 2011, 08:37
Maybe this is thread drift ? ....

I have the opposite experience of company's automatically renewing each year without notice, i.e. that of not renewing and leaving one uncovered.

It is an endearing habit of NZ banks to renew ones' credit cards every two years, and then refuse to accept a request for payment from a trader because they are being presented with a credit card that is now showing an expired "use by date ".

The Banks' answer is that I have to advise all my automatic payment services that the credit card I originally authorised them to present, now has a new expiry date ! I can't remember my passwords, never mind who I have authorised to automatically renew and charge to whatever credit card I gave them at the time.

I've had Insurance, Telephone, Electricity, etc. services cut off because the payment has been refused by the Bank not accepting THEIR re-issuance of my card.

I contend that it is the Banks' decision to renew my cards, I don't ask for it, and surely to God they can process their system to know that the card with the same name and number has been renewed by THEM, and accept a request for payment from a regular monthly, or annual, demander ?

Or is that too simple ?

22nd Sep 2011, 08:41
A few years ago I was sent a letter by the Abbey National telling me they would be renewing my buildings insurance automatically. I rang them to say no thankyou, don't want that, you are not competitive.

I was told in no uncertain terms that I had to take out buildings insurance with them as part of my mortgage agreement. I told the stroppy b***h that she was incorrect because the UK rules on that had just changed. She told me that the company were prepared to go to court over it.

I said go ahead, take me to court if you like, but you won't get far, especially as I don't have a mortgage... She couldn't understand this for some minutes.... I'd paid it off two years previously :hmm:

As for the folks advertising with a red phone...anyone else tried claiming off them? Not a pleasant experience. A car of ours was broken into, rolled down the hill into the side of a row of terraced houses and set alight when the thief couldn't start it. I was falsely accused of doing it myself! Even after the company had agreed a payout (only a few hundred pounds), the regional office still refused to do so. I had to speak to the UK manager to get that sorted out...took months. Never again with them, at any cost

22nd Sep 2011, 12:11
That red phone is pretty much the only one that isn't a free number to get a quote from, and that is why I never even ask them for a quote.