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  1. #1
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    Default OMG State Insurance - are you that horrible against Christchurch residents?

    Major rant but will keep it short. Acquired a new house in Christchurch, looking for insurance. Did have the IAG Earthquake Assessment report done by an inspector / builder and have been emailing it to appropriate IAG retail insurers. Called up State Insurance and could not believe the hassles with this lady.

    Emailed her IAG and also provided the previous home owner's customer # since it was insured with State. Thinking that it would save some time with the lady but instead, she went on asking all sorts of questions - in the order:

    1) She asked if there was EQ damage: fair enough question but I told her did you not have a look at that AIG assessment report I sent to you? Places me on hold

    2) Comes back and asks "Do you have proof you own the property?" Again I told her the details are on the IAG form. Rather than emailing the updated NZ Land Title Certificate with our names on it, I told we have not received local CCC rates bill yet and told her it was not practical to do so. Puts me on hold

    3) Comes back and asks "How did you own the property... DID YOU INHERIT THE HOUSE?" OMG! As if there wasn't enough silly questions asked I blasted her back saying "Lady you've crossed the line, you should not be asking such questions as they are no relevant in asking for a quote".

    I can understand insurance companies are being careful about issuing new policies but this house since it was built had always been with State Insurance. Second, the proper process was done by sending the IAG report that shows no EQ damage. This is the same report sent to BNZ Insurance and AMI ; none of them asked such evasive questions.

    State lady put my on hold 2 more times and after 30 mins, told me she could not get through on any of the IAG lines and asked to call back later. I told her call me before 2:30 as I have to pick up my children at school. At 3:10, she calls me to say they can proceed with the quote and asks if I have 15 - 20 mins to do a profile. Told her I was on the school grounds and about to drive home; call me back at 3:30. I didn't receive the call until the following morning. At the end, she did say she stepped over the line ; I wonder if the recorded conversation went into review.

    Have filed a complaint at https://www.govt.nz/browse/consumer-...nd-complaints/ but that was a waste of time. A person there called me and like lawyer politician manner, could NOT offer any advice or help as they have "NO authority to govern how insurance companies procure customers". They don't even record complaints or stats that would serve as good feedback to the gov't about the behaviour of various retail insurers. He said could look at another private organisation https://www.icnz.org.nz/

    Out of all my quotes; it works out that AMI came back with the lowest quote (again IAG reinsured so no different to BNZ or State). Tower was 2nd lowest and I believe they are independently re-insured.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by SBQ View Post
    Major rant but will keep it short. Acquired a new house in Christchurch, looking for insurance. Did have the IAG Earthquake Assessment report done by an inspector / builder and have been emailing it to appropriate IAG retail insurers. Called up State Insurance and could not believe the hassles with this lady.
    There is your mistake. Don't call them up. Take all your paperwork into the office and see them in person. No excuses then about not being able to find the paperwork you previously sent them if you go down that route. (Of course you can't do that with Tower because AFAIK they have now closed their Christchurch office.) For that reason alone I would never use Tower for insurance because there is no 'desk to thump' in Christchurch if things go wrong.

    As you found out with your consumer complaint process, a private company being rude or obtuse or declining you business for no reason is not illegal when you aren't even a customer.

    Quote Originally Posted by SBQ View Post
    Out of all my quotes; it works out that AMI came back with the lowest quote (again IAG reinsured so no different to BNZ or State). Tower was 2nd lowest and I believe they are independently re-insured.
    IAG actually owns 'State Insurance' and 'AMI Insurance'. So I am not sure you can say that IAG 'reinsures' State. I am sure State does have a reinsurer, but it won't be IAG. Reinsurance normally implies a wholesale type corporate insurance policy with another independent insurance company. State and IAG are certainly not independent.

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 05-03-2020 at 10:35 PM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snoopy View Post
    ....For that reason alone I would never use Tower for insurance because there is no 'desk to thump' in Christchurch if things go wrong....
    Many years ago after a long and fraught conversation with a personal banker who kept telling me things about my relationship with the bank that I knew to be patently untrue and who also refused to even entertain the idea that the bank could possibly be wrong resulted in me literally banging the desk.

    I also raised my voice a lot which resulted in the personal banker bursting into tears and me being evicted from the premises.

    Several minutes later whilst fuming on the pavement a senior bank employee whom I had know for many years saw me as he was coming back from lunch, and I got to re-enter the bank under his protection.

    It turned out almost all of the details that were stored against my name were not mine!
    om mani peme hum

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snoopy View Post
    There is your mistake. Don't call them up. Take all your paperwork into the office and see them in person. No excuses then about not being able to find the paperwork you previously sent them if you go down that route. (Of course you can't do that with Tower because AFAIK they have now closed their Christchurch office.) For that reason alone I would never use Tower for insurance because there is no 'desk to thump' in Christchurch if things go wrong.

    As you found out with your consumer complaint process, a private company being rude or obtuse or declining you business for no reason is not illegal when you aren't even a customer.

    IAG actually owns 'State Insurance' and 'AMI Insurance'. So I am not sure you can say that IAG 'reinsures' State. I am sure State does have a reinsurer, but it won't be IAG. Reinsurance normally implies a wholesale type corporate insurance policy with another independent insurance company. State and IAG are certainly not independent.

    SNOOPY
    Re in bold, good point of view. If things go wrong it helps to be able to walk into the office to smack the table.

    Using the telephone was a means to save time. The lady at State had no problems receiving the AIG report I sent - and I don't believe it would of mattered visiting in person at the local office. The hold up was getting a line connection with IAG to look at the report and give a response if she can proceed with the quote or not. I've had this problem countless of times at the bank waiting while the staff makes a call to ie. 'Intl help desk' or 'senior advisor' etc.. when the same would of been achieved being on hold on the phone. I suppose if you're standing in person, there may be less intrusion on asking moronic questions and doubting one's credibility.

    I remember back after the Chch quakes, AMI went into financial difficulty. Now being under AIG, it seems it makes little difference who you choose for insurance if they're all AIG. So it's looking to be AMI.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snow Leopard View Post
    Many years ago after a long and fraught conversation with a personal banker who kept telling me things about my relationship with the bank that I knew to be patently untrue and who also refused to even entertain the idea that the bank could possibly be wrong resulted in me literally banging the desk.

    I also raised my voice a lot which resulted in the personal banker bursting into tears and me being evicted from the premises.

    Several minutes later whilst fuming on the pavement a senior bank employee whom I had know for many years saw me as he was coming back from lunch, and I got to re-enter the bank under his protection.

    It turned out almost all of the details that were stored against my name were not mine!
    When I said 'banging the desk', I was thinking of the 'physical presence' before the potential 'fist thump' as the key advantage of being on the spot. A literal 'banging the desk' would be a last resort.

    I don't have an issue with conducting business by telephone, except when complications could arise that would be difficult to sort out 'over the phone'. If the business that you are having a disagreement with hangs up on you, then what can you do? Fly to Auckland to visit head office? Suddenly the 'great deal' you got on the phone starts to look 'not quite so cheap'. It is very easy for information to be misfiled and very difficult to get it corrected.

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 06-03-2020 at 08:29 AM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by SBQ View Post
    Using the telephone was a means to save time. The lady at State had no problems receiving the AIG report I sent - and I don't believe it would of mattered visiting in person at the local office. The hold up was getting a line connection with IAG to look at the report and give a response if she can proceed with the quote or not.
    The lady at State was more of a fool than you realise. AIG is a US based insurance company which has no relation to IAG, which is Australian. So an AIG report would have been useless. I don't think AIG does any house insurance business in NZ. If you had brought in a physical print out of the IAG report then the need to 'connect' to get one disappears.

    If you go to Riccarton, then the State Insurance Office and AMI are side by side and AA Insurance is over the road. I reckon I could transit between the help desk of those three branches faster than you could ring all three and get some service out of them!

    I remember back after the Chch quakes, AMI went into financial difficulty. Now being under AIG, it seems it makes little difference who you choose for insurance if they're all AIG. So it's looking to be AMI.
    AA insurance is a front for Vero which is separate from IAG. So there is still one 'boots on the ground' alternative.

    SNOOPY
    Last edited by Snoopy; 06-03-2020 at 08:48 AM.
    Industry shorthand sees BNZ employees still called 'bankers' but ANZ employees now called 'anchors'. Westpac has opted out of banking industry shorthand...

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snoopy View Post
    The lady at State was more of a fool than you realise. AIG is a US based insurance company which has no relation to IAG, which is Australian. So an AIG report would have been useless. I don't think AIG does any house insurance business in NZ. If you had brought in a physical print out of the IAG report then the need to 'connect' to get one disappears.

    If you go to Riccarton, then the State Insurance Office and AMI are side by side and AA Insurance is over the road. I reckon I could transit between the help desk of those three branches faster than you could ring all three and get some service out of them!

    AA insurance is a front for Vero which is separate from IAG. So there is still one 'boots on the ground' alternative.

    SNOOPY
    AIG is a typo and should be IAG. I do frequently visit Riccarton but only learned later the 3 insurers are close together.

    I will say finding any recourse with NZ Insurance Ombudsman was a complete waste of time. There's so many of these 'independent organisations' that have no real binding authority ; they consume a lot of tax payer funded $$$ just so they can maintain a job, yet having no real impact in shaping up the behavior of insurers around NZ. Kinda like i've seen with Jacinda where the Labour Party wanted to bring in CGT in their election platform... only for CGT to be compromised by doing a coalition win. I mean why do an independent inquiry 'tax working group' knowing that your joining party NZ 1st is not going to approve of any CGT proposal? Just makes me sick what NZ is becoming.

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