The muddled world of motor insurance

Browse pages
Current page

1

Current page

2

Current page

3

Current page

4

Current page

5

Current page

6

Current page

7

Current page

8

Current page

9

Current page

10

Current page

11

Current page

12

Current page

13

Current page

14

Current page

15

Current page

16

Current page

17

Current page

18

Current page

19

Current page

20

Current page

21

Current page

22

Current page

23

Current page

24

Current page

25

Current page

26

Current page

27

Current page

28

Current page

29

Current page

30

Current page

31

Current page

32

Current page

33

Current page

34

Current page

35

Current page

36

Current page

37

Current page

38

Current page

39

Current page

40

Current page

41

Current page

42

Current page

43

Current page

44

Current page

45

Current page

46

Current page

47

Current page

48

Current page

49

Current page

50

Current page

51

Current page

52

Current page

53

Current page

54

Current page

55

Current page

56

Current page

57

Current page

58

Current page

59

Current page

60

Current page

61

Current page

62

Current page

63

Current page

64

Current page

65

Current page

66

Current page

67

Current page

68

Current page

69

Current page

70

Current page

71

Current page

72

Current page

73

Current page

74

Current page

75

Current page

76

Current page

77

Current page

78

Current page

79

Current page

80

Current page

81

Current page

82

Current page

83

Current page

84

Current page

85

Current page

86

Current page

87

Current page

88

Current page

89

Current page

90

Current page

91

Current page

92

Current page

93

Current page

94

Current page

95

Current page

96

Current page

97

Current page

98

Current page

99

Current page

100

Current page

101

Current page

102

Current page

103

Current page

104

Current page

105

Current page

106

Current page

107

Current page

108

Current page

109

Current page

110

Current page

111

Current page

112

Current page

113

Current page

114

Current page

115

Current page

116

Current page

117

Current page

118

Current page

119

Current page

120

Current page

121

Current page

122

Current page

123

Current page

124

Current page

125

Current page

126

Current page

127

Current page

128

Current page

129

Current page

130

Current page

131

Current page

132

Sir,
The sudden demise of “Vehicle and General” may make the following tale of insurance of particular interest to readers:

In the early part of 1969, I sat waiting in a queue of stationary vehicles, with hand-brake applied, when a Fiat saloon car ran into the rear of the large PO van behind me, pushing it into my Variant estate car, and the latter into the rear of the Ford in front. This might appear to be a fairly common type of accident, and I therefore assumed that the insurance companies involved would have no difficulty in concluding payments resulting from the accident: I could scarcely have been more mistaken.

The driver of the Fiat refused to give me the name of his insurers, on the grounds that his car had not struck mine (!), and suggested that I claim from the insurers of the PO vehicle. My own (very reputable) insurers were unable to confirm that this was the correct course, but suggested that I should try it. The PO insurers declined to accept liability and helpfully passed on the name of the Fiat owner’s insurers. At this point I passed the entire matter over to the legal department of a leading motoring association.

The total cost of repairs to my car, and of hire of a similar vehicle (necessary on account of my living in a country village with no bus service), amounted to just over £400. This fairly large figure was in part due to a lengthy wait for a body panel, but all possible steps were taken to hasten completion of repairs.

The Fiat driver was subsequently fined and had his licence endorsed, so that once again I expected an early settlement. The present position is as follows:

1. I have been over £400 out of pocket for well over a year.

2. On the grounds that the delay in obtaining spare parts is not their responsibility (it is scarcely mine!) the Fiat driver’s insurers have so far declined to meet my costs in full, instead offering me a sum of £56 less than my expenses: this, needless to say, takes no account of any interest I might have earned.

3. Some of the best legal advice in the country, accustomed to dealing with car insurance claims, has not yet been able to recover the expenses of a motorist, halted in stationary traffic, from the insurers of a driver who has been found guilty of causing the accident which gave rise to the expenses.

As I feel sure that every insured motorist would wish to avoid the possibility of being placed in a similar situation, I would ask, on their behalf as well as my own, whether any representative of the motor insurance business can advise me where I went wrong, or why in these circumstances my claim should not have been met?

Those who have lost financially through the collapse of a reputable insurance company would do well to reflect that payment of an adequate premium is no passport to freedom from worry or financial loss in the event of an accident.

May your magazine’s originality long continue.

G.R. Simpson.
Aberdeen.

[We shall be delighted to publish any constructive information from the insurance world. The present position of “legalised robbery” borders on the criminal.—Ed.]