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Irish Insurance Article  

Isn't it extraordinary how important a part insurance plays in our lives.  Someone mentions insurance and we tend to think of the most recent insurance transaction we have had, whether it be paying a bill, making a claim, or updating details.  Gather your thoughts for a moment and give some collective thought to the role of insurance in your lives.

The first and possibly the one most people bring to mind is Car Insurance.  In Ireland , you are required by law to have at least third party car insurance and woe betide the driver who would disregard the law.  It is a criminal offence to drive without insurance and you could find yourself in prison if convicted.
Few people nowadays settle for third party insurance.  At the very least one needs to have third party ‘plus fire and theft’ cover on a modern car.  Third party insurance is okay for any claims against you, but can you imagine the consternation if you leave the house on a winter’s morning and find that your car has been stolen during the night?  And you have no theft insurance?  Not a nice way to start a wet, already dreary day.   With correct cover you can notify the insurance company, notify the police / Guards and hire a car for use while your car is being recovered or replaced.  Well worth the few extra euros each year to have this peace of mind.

Prices are so competitive these days that one should consider having comprehensive insurance.   In theory, this covers everything but the reality might be different.  It's worth asking the broker or company what is NOT covered!!  Always be aware of excess amounts that you have to pay.  This could be the first 300 euros or similar.  You might not be covered for personal injury.  Ask if your Irish comprehensive insurance covers you for loss of earnings.  Is that a separate matter and a separate insurance policy?  Ask, ask, ask.  And then ask for the information to be confirmed in writing.  

I had a situation a few years ago with a major car insurance company in Ireland , where my son's name was removed from the company computer by a careless employee. We were never notified and his name remained on the policy document that I had.   I had a few traumatic weeks later that year when he and another car sideswiped each other on a narrow road.  The company claimed that he wasn't on the policy.  Luckily, I was able to make enough noise about the matter and had them admit their mistake.  After it happened, I heard dozens of similar horror stories.  And they are horror stories.  I make no apologies for stating this.  Some companies are notorious and will try to weasel their way out of a claim if they can at all do so.  So if taking out car insurance in Ireland, get everything in writing.  Have the policy explained to you.  If I had been unsuccessful in my battle with my company, the driver of the other car would have had no choice but to sue, and the Garda would have prosecuted my son for driving without insurance.  Sounds like a bad movie but its true!









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