FCA measures to help clients during Covid-19
Following a short consultation, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has recently put together measures to help policyholders through Covid-19. These measures, we are pleased to report at County Insurance Services Ltd, will be implemented from 18th May and include the following:
- Reassessing client profiles of risk
At County we offer and regularly conduct reviews of client’s insurance portfolios, whether it’s a single car policy or a suite of business products. Where a client has had a change of circumstances following the Covid-19 outbreak, we will continue to offer our reviews and reassess client demands and needs for insurance. This will materially lower premiums where it is applicable and help save the policyholder unnecessary expenditure.
- Reassess policy requirements
Related to the above, if a client no longer requires add-on products such as motor legal expenses if their vehicle is declared SORN then premiums, where possible, will be adjusted accordingly.
- Payment deferrals
For clients that use our Close Brothers Premium Finance facility we are able to work together with Close to offer deferred payments. An example would be a client who, after their first payment, requires a short payment deferral. In this scenario we would contact Close on the client’s behalf, agree a revised payment schedule and continue the loan as normal. Please note failure to make payment will result in the loan remaining outstanding and, while insurance won’t be cancelled unless it’s necessary, it may affect your credit rating.
Clients that use Insurer Direct Debits should contact their respective Commercial Executive or Account Handler as each insurer’s process will differ. The principle remains the same that insurers should work with policyholders when it comes to direct debits.
For clients that pay for their insurance via Cash, Cheque or BACS, this facility can’t be extended past our 7 day credit limit. Direct debit wills be offered to clients as an alternative.
In the event of a claim premiums will still become payable immediately – any outstanding balance will be taken from the claims’ settlement in addition to any excess or underinsurance.
- Waiving of Adjustment and Cancellation Fees
Adjustment and Cancellation fees, part of our Terms of Business Agreement with policyholders, will be temporarily waived. In respect of cancellation, this will be the case if a client has to cancel an insurance policy for reasons related to Covid-19.
For clients who are not in financial difficulty and with debts prior to 31st March policy cancellation fees will still apply.
On implementing the measures, County’s chairman Malcolm Sydenham said: “Clearly the current situation for many policyholders is uncertainty. I setup County to make insurance work for clients and by quickly acting on the FCA’s guidance set out last week we continue to put policyholders first. Our long established relationships with insurers and credit providers means we can adapt quickly to a changing marketplace. We’re proud to support homes & business throughout Oxfordshire and across the UK during these unprecedented times.”