As storms continue to impact much of the North Island, insurers are prioritising those most affected, want to remind customers that claims can be lodged through insurers’ websites as well as by telephone and be transparent about the claims handling process for large events. 

“If you are homeless or otherwise vulnerable as a result of the storms, don’t hesitate to call your insurer. These types of claims will be prioritised.” said Insurance Council of New Zealand Te Kāhui Inihua o Aotearoa (ICNZ) Chief Executive, Tim Grafton. “If your claim is minor, think about using your insurers’ website to lodge your claim.”

Insurers are well prepared to deal with emergencies and have all available staff working to help customers. It is normal for those who are vulnerable or most in need, such as those whose homes are no longer habitable, to be prioritised and for phone lines to be busy in an emergency.

All available assessors are already working to get out to do initial assessments, working with local authorities where necessary. In some cases, there are access and safety considerations that slow the assessments down.   

“As we have seen after other large-scale events, we know that there will be high demand for tradies, building materials, household goods and vehicles over the coming months,” added Tim. Insurers will do what they can to prioritise those in greatest need, especially those who won’t be able to move home or re-open their businesses before repairs are done. As such, many minor repairs, or the supply of replacement goods, will, in some cases, take longer than normal.”


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