A huge leak in insurer’s offer

2010-04-24 09:02

A Hollard insurance policy-holder has refused to accept a partial

settlement from the insurer ­despite learning that she had underinsured her

household contents.

Nokuthula Ndlovu of Pinetown in KwaZulu-Natal is also prepared to

risk the repudiation of her claim by entrusting Hotline to fight the battle on

her behalf.

“I assumed that I was fully covered. Hollard had been increasing

premiums and the value of my ­cover each year, since 2008, when I signed up for

the insurance,” says Ndlovu.

“But Hollard has made it clear that I cannot get anything more than

the R12 000 they are offering.

“The damage to my furniture is estimated at R44 987 and I honestly

cannot settle for less.”

Her problem with Hollard started in February when she submitted a

claim after a roof ­leak.

The leak also caused damage to some of her furniture including

built-in wardrobes and cupboards.

A plumber told her that the leak was from a geyser that had burst.

She then lodged a claim with her insurer.

Ndlovu says this was the second incident in ­seven months and

Hollard had previously sent their own plumber to make the repairs. But

­according to her the repairs had not been done properly.

When the leak occurred again in February, Hollard sent an assessor

who made a finding that the geyser had burst and promised to forward a report to

Hollard. A Hollard consultant promised to contact her at a later stage but never

did.

“I contacted Hollard on numerous occasions asking for feedback,

with no success.

“When I finally got hold of a senior person, I was offered R12 000

and was told to take it or leave it.

“And for the first time I was informed that I had been

underinsured,” says Ndlovu.

When Ndlovu bought her property in 2008, she took out a household

insurance policy with ­Hollard.

At the time she was covered for R688 951 but the cover increased to

R857 000 the following year.

Ndlovu says her monthly premiums increased from R115 to R198 and

that she recently learnt that the cover should actually be R1 148 550.

“Hollard made sure I was notified about premium increases but

failed to inform me in advance that I was underinsured. Had I not submitted a

claim, when would I have known this?”

Two months after submitting her claim, Ndlovu’s household remains

in a messy state.

Hotline has referred the complaint to Hollard and the insurer has

agreed to review it.

Bhavni Meintjies, Hollard’s public and media relations manager, has

promised to investigate the matter and provide Hotline with feedback.



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