Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Earthquake Court Approach Misguided

media release

9 June 2014

Earthquake Court Approach Misguided

Lawyers will be the only winners from the Labour Party’s decision to set up an Earthquake Court that would be funded by everyone who takes out insurance in New Zealand and potentially Cantabrians may have to wait even longer to have claims resolved, the Insurance Council Chief Executive Tim Grafton said today.

“The idea of creating a situation where effectively you are forced by the State to pay people to sue you is totally rejected and would set a very bad precedent for the future.” Mr Grafton said.

“The supposed justification for this misguided policy is Labour’s statement that 10,000 insurance claims have not been settled. The reality is that 87% of the 22,500 over cap claims with insurers have been settled or agreement reached with the customer, there is only a very small fraction of claims that may be in dispute,” says Mr Grafton.

“About 1,500 customers have still to make decisions on the offers made by insurers but the majority are waiting for their land settlement offers from EQC before deciding, very few are in actual dispute.

“Where there is a dispute there are free services available to people to resolve maters without having to go to Court. First, there is the internal disputes resolution service with the insurer, next there are the external, registered disputes resolution services and in addition to this there is the Residential Advisory Service that insurers help fund,” he says.

“We would encourage people to use the independent services such as the Residential Advisory Service because in many cases the disputes are not legal issues but technical matters relating to differences about engineering assessments of damage,” he says.

“Clearly the current resolution procedures available are working because at the end of December 2013 there were 2,600 customers with undecided claims but by the end of March 2014 the number had reduced to 1,500 with a further 1,100 customers agreeing to a resolution with their insurer or claims management company,” says Mr Grafton.

“Where matters have gone to court, there are about 175 active earthquake cases before the High Court of which about 70% have been brought by one lawyer Grant Shand.

“Encouraging people to go to Court by making it free means people may abandon the already free disputes resolution services regardless of the merits of their case to the uncertain outcome of the Courts. This would put a halt to the customer’s recovery progress until the Court has determined their cases.

“Many customers just want to get on with their repairs and rebuilds but this misguided policy may create some confusion and further delay resolution as some may think they’ll await the outcome of the election to see whether some State-sanctioned court action may result in a future windfall,” says Mr Grafton.

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Science: Hookworm Discovery At Malaghan Institute

Professor Graham Le Gros has led a team which has stimulated both innate and memory responses to the parasite, discovering along the way the unexpected behaviour of one particular immune cell, in Hookworm, one of the world’s most devastating tropical ... More>>

Business: Provinces Urged To Make Full Use Of New Air Services

Provincial New Zealand has been urged to use new air services to Auckland or risk losing them either partially or completely. The stark warning was issued today by Far North mayor John Carter at a ceremony at Kaitaia airport to mark the final Air ... More>>

Mobile: 2degrees To Credit All Calls And SMS To Nepal

In the wake of the devastating earthquake in Nepal in the weekend, 2degrees will be crediting all calls and SMS messages made to mobiles and landlines in Nepal from Friday 24th April until midnight Wednesday 29th April. More>>

Scoop Business: Alex Swney Pleads Guilty To $2.5M Fraud Charge

Alex Swney, former chief executive of the Auckland city centre business association Heart of the City, has pleaded guilty to dishonestly using documents to obtain $2.5 million. More>>

ALSO:

Petrol Burns Prices: Second Consecutive Quarterly Fall For CPI

The consumers price index (CPI) fell 0.3 percent in the March 2015 quarter, following a 0.2 percent fall in the December 2014 quarter, Statistics New Zealand said today. The last time the CPI showed two consecutive quarterly falls was in the December 1998 and March 1999 quarters. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: NZ Broadcasters Launch Battle Against Global Mode ISPs

New Zealand broadcasters have confirmed they’ve launched legal proceedings against internet service providers who give customers’ access to “global mode”, which allows customers access to offshore online content, claiming it breaches the local content providers’ copyright. More>>

ALSO:

Sanford: Closure Of Christchurch Mussel Processing Plant Confirmed

The decision comes after a period of consultation with the 232 staff employed at the Riccarton site, who were told on 9 April that Sanford was considering the future of mussel processing in Christchurch. Recent weather patterns had impacted on natural spat (offspring) supply... More>>

ALSO:

Price Of Cheese: Dairy Product Prices Fall To The Lowest This Year

Dairy product prices fell in the latest GlobalDairyTrade auction, hitting the lowest level in the 2015 auctions so far, as prices for milk powder and butter slid amid concern about the outlook for commodities. More>>

ALSO:

Houston, We Have An Air Route: Air New Zealand To Fly Direct To The Heart Of Texas

Air New Zealand will fly its completely refitted Boeing 777-200 aircraft between Auckland and Houston up to five times a week opening up the state of Texas as well as popular nearby tourist states such as Louisiana and Florida. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news