Business Irish

Tuesday 23 September 2014

Setanta Insurance announces it is to close down

Warns it may be unable to pay out claims

Charlie Weston, Personal Finance Editor

Published 17/04/2014 | 11:22

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The League of Credit Unions has a "new understanding" with the Central Bank which will "explicitly involve" the league in the regulatory affairs of its affiliated credit unions
The League of Credit Unions has a "new understanding" with the Central Bank which will "explicitly involve" the league in the regulatory affairs of its affiliated credit unions

AN insurance company that covers thousands of drivers has warned that it may not be able to pay out claims after a decision was taken to dissolve the business.

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Setanta Insurance, has around 70,000 policyholders, but decided this morning to close down, the Irish Independent has learned.

Close to 70,000 people are insured with the company, mainly small firms that have vans. But there are also a number of car drivers who have private motor insurance.

The Dublin-based insurer had been winding down its business here since the start of the year, when it had 100,000 policyholders.

It is headquartered in Malta and regulated from there.

In a statement the company said it held a company meeting yesterday and decided that “a solvent run-off is no longer possible”.

Policyholders will be given a cancellation notice, but “the company is however not in a position to confirm that claims in this interim period will be met in full since any and all claims will be subject to the relevant liquidation process”, it said.

The Central Bank here said it did not regulate Setanta, but will still require the company to notify all policyholders of what is going on.

According to Jonathan Hehir, director of  Insuremyvan.ie thousands of small business owners and other van drivers now appear to be stranded without  insurance cover as a result of the difficulties at Setanta.

“Setanta’s statement as to whether full cover is still in place is so ambiguous, policyholders need to assume that they’re off cover immediately. This is appalling,” Mr Hehir said.

He added: “Insuremyvan.ie does not have any clients insured with Setanta, however, we will be staying open over the weekend to assist Setanta customers and our van insurance experts will endeavour to  answer any questions they may have.”

He referred to the statement released by Setanta  today which stated: “Setanta is not in a position to confirm that claims will be met in full since any and all claims will be subject to the relevant liquidation process.  Policyholders should therefore make arrangements for alternative cover without delay”

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