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WA QBE Insurance demand excess on not at fault claims?

Discussion in 'Politics, Laws, Government & Insurance' started by Audible, Jun 10, 2010.

  1. OK, first a brief on the incident.

    19th of may 2010 I was riding my bike, came to a stop sign. Stopped at the line and was hit from behind by a car. Driver of the car stopped, rendered assistance and identified himself so I have his name, adress, vehicle rego and licence details.
    MY bike is fully rego'ed, I have the relevant licence for the bike and was being used for personal use. (RE at the time of the accident, since upgraded to R). I'm 43 with a max no claim bonus which I've held since the early 90's (not sure when I earnt it and never made an at fault claim) and my drivers licence record pretty much walks on water.

    So I make my claim to Western QBE insurance whom I have Comprehensive - Private use insurance. They have demanded that I pay a $800 excess to the repairer. This is made up of $500 standard excess and an additional $300 "inexperienced" excess as I have held a M/C licence for less than 3 years.

    There is no guarantee of getting this excess back ever. I will only get this back if the other party pays up according to WQBE. Naturally, he isn't insured.

    So I called WQBE for a "please explain" and was constantly told to read the PDS. The wording in section 4 of the PDS essentially says "you may have to pay an excess". It does not say "you must pay an excess" which is what WQBE are essentially doing to me.

    In any case, I am not being "comprehensively" insured here. I paid for the policy in good faith to be financially protected from incidents just like this and now I find WQBE are bailing out on their obligations. If I have to pay my excess initially to the repairer, there has to be a point where I receive this money back otherwise, what was the point of being insured in the first place if I can incur a financial loss from a not at fault claim?

    So, has this happened to anybody else? What avenue's can I pursue from here? Do I try to go after the driver myself and not claim at all?

    Would appreciate some advice here as Im flabbergasted at this crock that WQBE are trying to pull.
  2. ISCN will be able to help you more, PM him. A while ago he posted a few links about insurance agencies who have something to do with something about an ombudsman and you can make them do stuff. Hope that helps. You'd be best to check it for yourself to see. I think it may be a sticky.

    There have been a few complaints about QBE, and at least one thread that I can remember on this exact issue.
  3. I thought this was standard practice through the industry, you pay the excess to process the claim and get it back when the insurer has made a recovery from the other party?
  4. I thought it was standard as well to pay excess, then get it back again.

    Has the other party actually admitted guilt, if not , QBE are covering there bases as well....
  5. WQBE have made it very clear to me that I'll only get my excess back if they make a full recovery from the other party. If they don't get any money from the driver, I don't see a cent.

    I wouldn't mind it so much if I was guaranteed to get my excess back eventually but WQBE are telling me that I have to accept the risk of not ever getting my excess back.

    I checked the PDS of a couple of other insurers such as Swann and they specifically state that you do not have to pay any excess at all on a claim where you are not at fault and have the details of the party at fault. WQBE's PDS does not state this.
    In all my years as a car driver and been hit by unlicenced and un insured drivers many a times and I've never had to pay a cent in excess. I can't see how this is "standard practice".
  6. Thanks for the heads up. I am with QBE for both the scooter and the bike. Time to start looking for a new insurer.
  7. This is not the first complaint about WQBE and it WILL NOT be the last.

    There are many other insurers out there that are happy for you to not pay an excess in situations such as this.

    Basically, for QBE the story goes like this. They get OP's excess which is $800. Lets say repairs cost $3,000. If it's going to cost WQBE more than the difference ($2,200) in legal/court/other fees/expenses to recover the money, then you can kiss your excess goodbye and have the dis-pleasure of having gone with WQBE....

    Not having a go at the OP here, but the sooner consumers realise that cheaper DOES NOT ALWAYS equal better, we will all be better off. My advice, use an insurance broker or make sure the READ THE PDS cover to cover and know your definitions/terminology!
  8. sorry OP, thats just the way it is....... if the other party is deemed at fault, you will get your excess back (eventually)

  9. It's not the way it is. Not all insurance companies do this. In addition, it is clear the other part is at fault, but as they have no insurance it is unlikely they will recover their costs and reimburse the insured.
  10. Yup, see if you can get in touch with ISCN for any advice, and/or hit up the ombudsman.
  11. Speaking from experience with QBE, I'd say it's not unlikely - but you will most likely have to wait years to recover.

    I was rear-ended in June 2007 by an uninsured P-plater. Because I was still classed as an inexperienced rider at the time my excess was $600. The driver ignored QBE's demand for payment (the repair bill was over $4500 - and could have been more had the assessor not insisted on repairing rather than replacing the frame) so in March/April 2008 they instructed their solicitors to sue the driver.

    I'm not sure what the exact outcome of that was, but evidently there was some sort of payment plan put in place. A payment plan that he defaulted on, because at the start of the year QBE's solicitors were calling me to tell me they were going to drag him back before the court to get him to pay the lot or explain why he wasn't keeping up with the payment plan.

    Whatever they did worked, because in late February I got a call from QBE's claims department saying they're recovered and were giving me back my excess - two and a half years after the accident, and just in time to pay my CTP and rego!

    In short - you will get your money back, you just have to be extremely patient. I'm still waiting to get my excess back from having my bike knocked over by a van in a car park in 2008 (driven by a rider of all people :mad:)
  12. Ditch QBE. That kind of treatment is F#cked. I had a stupid old cow walk out of the shadows on a no moon night on a no lit road and into the front LHS of the beemer. Arse upped her and the bike did a couple of reverse two and a halfs in the pike pos'n. When she regained consciousness she admitted liability and RACV did the rest. $8500 damage and all I did was wait for the repair (another story) but NO excess by me even though I have nominated one. BTW speed at the time 50kph. Cops happy not my fault. ATGATT kept me unscathed....and I scored a new helmet too!
  13. To the OP.

    And no reach around? No lube? JEEZ! you got F__CKED.

    Guys thanks for warning me off WQBE.
  14. thanks foir the heads up OP, time to look for another insurer. Timing is perfect as I just got my renewal with QBE.
  15. My girlfriend is insured with Swann and so was I (currently looking for a new bike).

    She had two 'not at fault' claims and her scooter was written off in the 2nd.

    I know for a fact that she did not have to pay any excess on either claim because she was not at fault.

    What WQBE are doing is shifting part of the risk of proving that the other driver is a guilty party and that they are able to pay, onto you; clearly it's pretty half arsed 'comprehensive' insurance.

    You have every right to be perplexed as to why the hell they call it 'comprehensive', but at the same time reading the PDS does give you an idea as to the quality of insurance you're recieving.

    I'll remember to steer clear of these clowns.
  16. I find i strange that they are demanding the Inexperienced Excess based on a Not At Fault Claim.
  17. I call the insurance ombudsman about this very issue, and found him to be very unhelpful.

    its written in your policy apparently that an excess is payable at time of claim.

    Unless the other persons insurance admits fault immediately, then you have to pay up

    sorry dude

  18. I didn't actually pick QBE on price. I thought they where a reputable company due to their advertising and the general advice on forums such as this one regarding motorcycle insurance. QBE where actually dearer than other quotes that I had and I was happy to pay the extra, thinking that I was buying a quality product.
    QBE obviously have a lot of motorcyclists fooled into thinking they offer a quality product when the reality appears to be very different.

    I was also mislead by the PDS. It clearly says "you may have to pay an excess". Yet the attitude when you claim is that you "must pay an excess no matter what" and their is no "may" at all no matter what the scenario is regarding the claim. That is misleading information any way you look at it.

    Anyway, I've put a written complaint to QBE along those lines to them. After that its onto the ombudsman regarding the misleading terminology in QBE's PDS.
  19. Well, just got a phone call from QBE regarding my claim and complaint I made.

    What it all boils down to is what I paid for with my premium. it was only $200 per year which is chump change for an motorcycle insurance policy in anybodies language. I think this is about marketing. QBE are trying to keep the premiums down this way. Upgrading my premium so that I don't have to pay my excess in a not at fault claim costs another $90 PA which is still pretty cheap for a rider like me. If you where only 19 years old riding a Hayabusa, that option would cost a lot more and wouldn't be worth while. So QBE factor it into the pricing of their policies to make the premium more affordable.

    That's what I found confusing about their PDS. The "may have to pay" part relates to the level of cover you buy. Should be outlined a bit better in the PDS, but that's neither here nor there.

    QBE did offer a carrot. They decided to waiver my inexperienced excess so my total excess is now $500. They based that on the fact that I have been riding 50cc scoots on a C class licence since 1995 plus my age, driving record and what I ride.

    Bottom line is to read the PDS and ask questions when you take out insurance and understand what your being covered for. Not all policies are the same that's for sure.

    As to getting my excess back, well I may have a reasonable chance there. Damage is mainly cosmetic to my naked CBF 250. Just over a grand or so. Guy who hit me looked like he was on his way to work and driving a decent 4wd so he shouldn't have too much trouble coughing up, I hope.
  20. The only time I've ever had to pay when I wasn't at fault was when there was some possibility the other party may claim I was at fault.

    Is Western QBE the same as QBE we see in NSW?