Mr Wright's letter (Motor Sport, February 1988) seems to call for a reply. As one of the leading brokers dealing with Agreed Value insurance for collectors' vehicles, perhaps a reply from us would assist.
First of all, it would not be sensible to comment on Mr Wright's particular case, because we are not in possession of all the facts, and certainly the extent of the enquiries which were made in this case would lead us to believe that there must be some unusual feature. Where we arrange cover On an Agreed Value basis, it is agreed and no further questions are asked at a later stage.
However, we do go into the question of value very carefully to make sure we get it right. We do not rely on reports completed by the policy holder himself, as some insurers do. Our reason for avoiding this procedure is that if a client filled in such a form inaccurately due to lack of knowledge, he could invalidate his Agreed Value. We believe that the car's owner is not the best person to fill in such a form, and so we usually work from photographs and our own records. If we have an engineer's report form completed at all, it has to be done by an acknowledged independent expert.
There are schemes for all types of collectable cars and we believe that the Agreed Value scheme is an essential element. We have been handling the insurance of collectors' cars for some twenty-five years, and to date we have never had such a claim queried. Maybe Mr Wright did not go to one of the recognised brokers in the collectors' cars market?
David Franklin, John Scott and Partners, Farnham, Surrey