Motor Insurance Market results for 2016

This was posted by on June 15th, 2017

It has today been announced by EY that the net combined loss ratio for 2016 business is 109%. This basically means that for every pound insurers received in motor premium they paid out £1.09

As you can imagine this is not a sustainable business model so I can therefore see insurers looking to increase premium as they have been since the beginning of 2017

We accept some premiums may need to increase due to poor loss ratio however working with our partner insurers we will certainly be negotiating on our client’s behalf to minimize any premium increases

Unfortunately any increases will be compounded by the increase in insurance premium taxation from June 2017

If you have found that your motor premium has increased please call us on 01604 492644 and ask for Matthew or Jason who will be able to offer you terms from our panel of insurers

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Skeleton Keys For Ford Transits

This was posted by on June 14th, 2017

We’re picking up quite a few claims when Ford Transits are being broken into and there is no sign of forced entry. We can only assume that this a result of the Skeleton Keys that are easily available from sites such as Amazon (for as little as £20!). It’s madness really that this such items can be available to the general public and we can only recommend that Ford Transits owners be extra vigilant and consider increasing the security on those vehicles.

Here’s a video of how easy those £20 keys can get in to a Ford Transit:

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Are You Buying Enough liability Cover? The Ogden Discount Rate Change Explained

This was posted by on May 23rd, 2017

The Discount Rate – sometimes called the Ogden Rate (after Sir Michael Ogden QC) is the rate used by the legal profession to calculate the value of claims for catastrophic injuries. It is used to work out the initial amount of money somebody requires in order to generate a future income from that initial lump sum. The rate effectively determines what investment return you should expect to get on your money – the lower the rate, the more money you need to give somebody in order to generate a pre-determined level of future income.
On the 27th February Lord Chancellor announced she would be reducing the rate from +2.5% to minus 0.75% after the 20th March 2017. The reason the rate was changed is that it had not been reviewed since 2001 and it was felt that 2.5% did not reflect the current investment climate.
How does it affect me?
The cost of catastrophic personal injury claims will increase significantly. These are claims that result from brain or spinal injuries and mean that the injured party is unable to work and/or unable to care for themselves. The arboriculture industry is particularly susceptible to such injuries because of the nature of its work. The future loss of earnings and the costs of caring for a severely disabled claimant often form the largest part of a personal injury claim – it is these elements that are affected by the lowering of the Ogden Rate.
If claims cost more then it is likely that insurers will have to increase premiums to offset this. However, the greatest financial risk to your business arises from the inadequacy of the limit(s) under your Liability insurance.
In the early 1990s it was unusual for a personal injury claim involving a single claimant to cost more than £1m. More recently, prior to the reduction in Ogden Rate, it was rare for even the most serious claims to cost in excess of £10m. Now, following the rate reduction, the legal profession are valuing claims in excess of £20m – and that is for a single person getting injured. Imagine the cost if an accident at work resulted in two or three of your employees or members of the public suffering significant injuries as described above?
Here is an example of a claim:
A 21 year-old employee suffered a complete spinal cord injury when struck at the base of the neck by a falling branch. He has been left with permanent paralysis affecting all limbs and will require 24 hour care for the rest of his life. As a result of the Ogden rate shift the value of his claim for future losses increases dramatically. Looking at lifetime care needs alone, where these would have previously been valued at £5.3m, using the same estimates for the annual cost of care the total value now increases to £14.8m under the new Ogden rate. Once all future losses are taken into account the total value of the claim increases from £9m to £20.9m.
What should I do?
The standard limit for Employers’ Liability insurance in the UK is £10m (including legal costs). Many larger firms buy much more than this because they have a large number of employees. We now have a situation where a £10m EL limit may be inadequate to deal with a catastrophic injury to a single person. An insurer will not pay more than the limit that is provided by the policy. If a court awards damages to a claimant that are more than the limit under the policy then YOUR BUSINESS will be responsible for the balance. Remember that legal costs will be incurred on top of any damages claim.
You should also consider the adequacy of your Public Liability limit if your business involves work that could result in injuries to persons other than your employees.
To enquire about increasing your Employer’s Liability and/or Public Liability cover please call 01604 492644 and ask for Cameron or Geoff.

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Attention all Tree Surgeons

This was posted by on April 11th, 2017

It’s clearly apparent that Organised Crime is on the Increase.

Is your Plant & Machinery insured on the correct basis?

Are you Under Insured?

What would the consequences to your Business be if all your Plant was stolen of damaged

When was the last time you reviewed & completed an Inventory of plant based on up-to-date values?

Due to the fluctuation  in exchange rates.. plant and machinery have increased over 30% in  value over the last 4 years.

From speaking to New clients that have recently moved over to us from other Insurance provider.

I have heard some horrendous stories of clients being underinsured, and of Insurers refusing Insurance/reducing cover to Indemnity from New for Old. or even tripling renewal premiums.

 

How can we reduce the risk against a loss?       

Tractors, quad bikes, power tools, JCBs, loaders, Wood chippers  forklifts – have a vast array of items of value to attract a rising wave of criminals. Current estimates place the value of plant theft alone at £1 million each week*.

Historically manufacturers have not always fitted security devices to (plant). It is quite common to find a £60,000 excavator, without any form of reliable security, being left overnight on an open contract site! Equally, a significant amount of driven plant is not road registered and often manufacturer markings are either difficult to find or easy to remove. This means that, not only is it easy to steal high value items of driven plant, the lack of proper identification mean Police have little chance of accurately identifying rightful ownership should they suspect an item has been stolen.

Many of these items will be insured so it’s not necessarily the cost of the stolen property that is damaging. Quite often it’s the uninsured cost of downtime and idle crews, along with the effect of increased insurance premiums, that could have a serious effect on the profitability of some UK businesses.

There are a few simple measures that could make the lives of would-be criminals more difficult:

  • Mark all equipment, vehicles and machinery with an identification number or unique mark or Blue Water Easily, removable parts on equipment should also be marked.
  • Where possible and practical, disable the equipment by removing the distributor cap, rotor arm or battery or consider the use of immobilisers.
  • Ensure that gates are secured with robust padlocks or chains.
  • Consider the installation of CCTV cameras to deter thieves and provide copies of any filmed theft to the relevant police authorities.
  • Secure equipment with heavy chains and good quality locks. Either chain or lock items of equipment together. Individually chain chainsaws, brush cutters, Kombi systems and blowers as this not only makes the items more secure but also makes it easier for you to unlock that item
  • Put lockable caps on fuel outlets to prevent theft.
  • Advertise deterrents – put up warning signs to let potential thieves and trespassers know that there are watch dogs, alarms on the premises and identification marks have been made on all equipment.
  • Where possible, make use of sensor operated lighting on outbuildings or storage sheds.

 

  • If you would like to discuss either your current security arrangements or insurance please call 01604 492644.  
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Tools Kept Under The Tipper body?

This was posted by on March 30th, 2017

We’ve recently been advised that some Tree Surgeons keep their tools under their vehicle’s Tipper body over night. We strongly advise against doing this, as thieves have learned of this and claims cannot be paid out when tools are stolen in such a circumstance.
We indemnify claims from vehicles when they are on site but when on the client’s premises, tools should be stored in a locked building or compound.

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The ogden rate

This was posted by on March 13th, 2017

It was announced on Monday that the Ogden discount rate has been reduced from 2.5% to -0.75%, and the change will take effect from 20 March 2017.

This is one of the most significant changes facing our industry in some time. It will undoubtedly have a substantial impact so we thought it might be helpful to provide you with some key points to use in conversations with your customers.

What is the discount rate?

The objective is to make sure a severely injured person has the necessary financial security to provide for their care and loss of earnings. The discount rate is used to calculate the amount of compensation they receive to reflect the return they will earn when that money is invested.

Please see this illustration for an example of how the discount rate is used to calculate compensation payments and the way in which this change will impact our industry.
Ogden Rate

Impact of the change

The reduction means that those suffering from serious injuries will receive significantly higher compensation payments than before.

The substantial increase affects claims costs for all lines of business which see claims for bodily injury – including Private and Commercial Motor, Motor Trade, Casualty (Employers Liability, Other Liability and Contractors Liability) and SME. As such, we have no choice but to immediately consider our pricing requirements in this new environment. We’ll be in dialogue with your teams on all cases where there is an impact.

This will be an unwelcome change for insurers, brokers and customers alike but one that cannot be ignored with certain insurers looking to increase there premiums by significant amounts. We at Trust are already working with our partner insurers to nullify or minimize these potential premium increases

Allianz’s response

Jon Dye, CEO said of the change:

The new rate announced by the Lord Chancellor is extremely disappointing. We believe that the system used to calculate the discount rate is flawed and does not take into account the current investment environment and the financial choices available for claimants.

But now that the decision has been made we must move forward and work through the consequences. Internally, we have scenario tested a range of possibilities and now that we know what the new rate is, we can start to make decisions on what the best course of action is to provide sustainable solutions for our business, partners and customers.

When situations like this present themselves, we are fortunate to be part of a group which is financially strong and capable of dealing with the unexpected.”

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New insurer added to our panel for Commercial Vehicle Insurance offering young drivers cover

This was posted by on November 30th, 2016

Trust Insurance has responded to clients requests over the last few months and continued to develop its products and panel of insurers to focus on the high risk nature of tree surgery, landscape gardeners, and forestry workers and their unique needs and specialist modified vehicles.

Non-Standard Needs & Vehicles, Means Non-standard Insurance

“We all know that every job is different, and you need the right tool for the right job.”
Your vehicle is no different and vital to any business. No two tree surgery trucks will ever be the same, and the same can be said about insurance.
No insurance policy will be able to cater to every need, that’s why we designed and built our policies around you. We have developed our own schemes in partnership with our panel of insurers to help make it easier and more convenient for you to insurer your vehicles and protect your assets.

Modifications

You might have modified it yourself and removed seats in a double cab to make room for tools, you may have had the sides galvanised, chip boards or a cage built on a Tipper?
You may have a MEWP for certain jobs or a winch fitted, you might even have an imported pickup, as well as being sign written?
They may seem like minor things to you, but in fact all these non-standard elements increase the costs of your vehicle to repair or replace in the event of an accident, and as desirable tools of your trade make them theft attractive to others.

We know the risks, and always provide a fair and competitive premium for your needs!

Exciting changes at Trust Insurance Services Ltd

We are pleased to add a new insurer to our panel this year centred on rural life and vehicles, which many customers of Trust are already benefitting from.

A new product, and new capabilities means we are able to provide you more competitive quotes than ever before and cover for more vehicles including telehandlers, forwarders, harvesters, Unimog’s, Tractors, Agricultural Quad bikes, ride on mowers and many more for road use.

The new provider can also assist if you are struggling to obtain cover for younger or new employee’s and drivers between the ages 18-25 on pickup’s, tipper’s and 4×4’s for your business with flexible underwriting for tree surgeons, landscapers or forestry related trades.

What does this mean for you?

The increased underwriting flexibility and new insurer on our panel means we can offer quotes for Any Driver over 21 cover if required on individual vehicles, as well as offer multi vehicle policies for 2 or more vehicles!

Not only is there an added saving for you in cost, but from us understanding the risks associated with your job from our time in the industry over the last 20 years, there are extra features and benefits included for you and tailored by us including carriage of hazardous flammables Jerry cans / chainsaw oil amongst others that can’t be found anywhere else in the standard market place!

Did You Know?

As a member of the Gardener’s Guild, or an existing client of Trust you could be entitled to a Discount on more than one policy taken out from our specialist range of Arb insurance products if you are qualified from our panel insurers?

Please contact the office for more details –subject to underwriting criteria.

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Confirmation of training cover – Tree Surgery Liability Insurance Policy

This was posted by on November 24th, 2016

It has been brought to our attention that the Arboricultural Association has questioned whether or not our tree surgery liability insurance policy indemnifies for staff training.

We can confirm that we do automatically include this cover under our liability policy.

From a HSE point of view the apprentices/novices must still be under supervision of a qualified person.

Mr G R Parrish
Managing Director

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Insurance Premium Tax to rise again to 12%

This was posted by on November 23rd, 2016

The government has just announced in its autumn statement that from the 1st June 2017 insurance premium tax (IPT) will increase AGAIN to 12%. Insurance premium tax in the last 18 months has increased from 5% to what will be 12%. At present time insurance premium tax is set at 10%, this was only introduced in October 2016.

I strongly believe this will not be the last rise in insurance premium tax as in the continent taxes on insurance premiums is at 20% and the government left themselves no room to increase the mainstream taxes at the last election.

We will do all we can to minimize the increases in your premiums, however, we cannot control taxes (unfortunately)!

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Public Interest disclosure

This was posted by on November 14th, 2016

Introduction

Trust Insurance at all times conducts its business with the highest standards of integrity and honesty. It expects all employees to maintain the same standards in everything they do. Employees are therefore encouraged to report any wrongdoing by the company or its employees that falls short of these business principles. (This also applies to staff of key contractors, if applicable.)

The Public Interest Disclosure Act (PIDA) 1998 protects employees who report wrongdoing within the workplace but it is the aim of this policy to ensure that as far as possible our employees are able to tell us about any wrongdoing at work which they believe has occurred or is likely to occur.

We recognise that employees may not always feel comfortable about discussing their concerns internally, especially if they believe that the company itself is responsible for the wrongdoing. The aim of this policy is to ensure that employees are confident that they can raise a matter with the company that concerns them in the knowledge that it will be taken seriously and treated as confidential.

The company undertakes that no employee who makes a bona fide report under this procedure will be subject to any detriment as a result, in accordance with section 47B of the Employment Rights Act 1996. The company will take all steps possible to ensure that no one (under our control) engages in victimisation as a result. In the event that you believe you are being subjected to detriment by any person within the company as a result of your decision to invoke the procedure you must inform Geoffrey Parrish and appropriate action will be taken to protect you from any reprisals.

If it should become clear that the procedure has not been invoked in good faith, the allegations are false and/or malicious, (for example to pursue a personal grudge against another employee), this will constitute misconduct and will be dealt with in accordance with the terms of the company’s disciplinary procedure.

What does this include under the PIDA?

A qualifying disclosure tends to show that a ‘failure’ has taken place, is taking place or is likely to take place. A failure includes:
• A criminal offence
• A failure to comply with any legal obligation
• A miscarriage of justice
• The putting of health and safety of any individual in danger
• Damage to the environment
• Deliberate concealment relating to any of the above

The company takes these failures very seriously,

Procedure

If appropriate, discuss the matter with your manager in the first instance.
• An informal approach to your manager will be treated as completely confidential (and will not result in any report to anyone within the company unless you agree).
• If the matter requires further investigation this will be carried out by your manager and you will be informed of the outcome and what, if any, action has been taken.

If you would prefer, you may raise concerns to a different manager, or any other senior person within the organisation (including the Principal/Director).

If you remain unhappy about the speed or conduct of the investigation or the way in which the matter has been resolved, you should refer the matter to Geoffrey Parrish. When they have investigated your complaint they will tell you the result of the investigation and what, if any, action has been taken.

External referral

The company is keen to hear of any concerns that employees may have about wrongdoing at work and encourages them to use the procedure described above wherever possible.

The company recognises there may be matters that cannot be dealt with internally and external authorities will need to become involved. Where necessary the company reserves the right to make such a referral without your consent.

From 14 January 2005, the FSA are the regulator prescribed in respect of financial services and marketing matters under the PIDA .On the 1st of April 2013 the regulator became the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and further information is available via their website.

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