Tuesday 21 November 2017

Know your rights: €15 fee for a no-claims bonus document

Dermott Jewell
Dermott Jewell

Dermott Jewell

A €15 fee for a no-claims bonus document and problems with a furniture provider. What are your rights? Our expert has the answers...

Hello Dermott. Following your advice, I changed car insurance companies this year - I saved €200 by doing so! As the new company needed my no-claims bonus details I sent them the pdf I had received when my renewal email came from my old insurer.They said they needed a hard copy and so I contacted the company immediately and requested one. However, I was told it would cost me €15 to have it sent out. Now, I have to say, this is a really low blow to hit the consumer with. If this is the way we are going then it's time insurance companies were made to accept documents in a pdf format, especially if they are completing sales online. I hope you can act on this one.


A: Hi Emmet. I have to say that I was just as angry as you when I read your email and so I arranged contact with the company and raised the issues with them.

Before I focus on that, though, it's best to highlight that, despite the online nature of providing cover it is, understandably, completed on the basis that some official checks will need to be completed and in 'official' 'old-fashioned' terms. It's because this is a legally required insurance requiring there be real proof provided of address, no-claims and identity in general. This is why a 100% online close-out is not possible in every case.

On the issue of the €15 fee, the company advised that they would charge this only for a replacement hard copy of the document. I outlined that you had never received one and that it was missed in your discussions with them that you only received an online copy. They were apologetic and ask that you contact them again so that they can remedy the issue with you and arrange for a refund.

Q: Dear all, I have received a worrying number of queries from readers who are experiencing significant problems with a well-known furniture provider.

These range across poor to bad quality sofas, settees and armchairs. Promises have been made to replace armrests, refill cushions and refund monies. Appointments and arrangements have been agreed for inspections and collections. Consumers have taken time off only to have no one turn up and without even a call to offer an apology.

Now, despite numerous calls, interventions and promises, nothing is being done and out of pocket consumers are storing useless furniture, some now for as much as six months!

This is unacceptable. So, you need to immediately write letters, addressed for the attention of The Manager/CEO, with copies to the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (ccpc.ie) and the Consumers' Association of Ireland (thecai.ie). State how your rights under both the Sale of Goods and Supply of Services Act, 1980, as well as your entitlements with the company under contract law, have been denied to you.

As there are varying complaints here, I suggest you each demand confirmation and assurance, within five working days, that your particular issue will be resolved. This allows you to advise that failure to do so will result in you making a formal request to the CCPS for investigation and resolution and to the CAI for highlighting the inactions of the company as a warning to all consumers. Hopefully - this will receive the attention you deserve. Keep in touch with me on this one.


Irish Independent

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