Having just spent 3 years, jumping through hoops for a Complaint to the A.F.C.A, supplying copious documents and photographs (of damage to an insured house, destroyed by a “defined event” of pipe-burst water under the slab, @100,000 ltrs+) and waiting for an A.F.C.A “determination”, I have been gobsmacked to receive a determination in favour of the Insurer (CGU), only requiring them to pay some $10k (plus $5k of Expert witness costs) for a totally destroyed house, which MUST now be demolished, and was insured for $465k at the time of the “defined event”. Along the way, A.F.C.A “preferred” the Reports of Insurer’s Engineers (to my Engineer and Building Expert) who couldn’t even get the following facts correct:
- Type of construction,
- Orientation of the house, and
- Fall of the land.
Indeed, the A.F.C.A not only ignored at least 6 breaches of the Insurance Code of Conduct, by the Insurer, (and actually facilitated at least two more) but also the Insurer’s multiple breaches of their “Duty of utmost good faith”, and the A.F.C.A actually quoted the Insurer’s original (first) conduct code breach IN A.F.C.A’s final determination,i.e. perpetuating THAT breach SIX YEARS after it first occurred and was reported TO the Insurer, by me. One single breach of “duty of utmost…” is sufficient in a Court of Law, to constitute a breach of Contract, with a consequent finding in favour of the “victim”…my Claim has at least a half dozen of such breaches.
Online (Product Review) reviews of A.F.C.A clearly demonstrate Consumer disdain and discontent with A.F.C.A outcomes, but this “Authority” is WHO Consumers are directed to, for financial services Complaints…This “Authority” is failing DISMALLY. Given that the A.F.C.A is FUNDED by the very same financial service providers that the Royal Commission sought to “clean up”…are we really surprised that it transpires that Consumers are yet again left floundering around for “justice”? Indeed, the A.F.C.A “fraudulently” manipulates its own statistics by e.g. In my Case, they requested a “temporary” closure of my Complaint, requiring a new Complaint number when re-opened. I naively agreed, which “got me off their books” within their “two year time frame” (giving the appearance of success by them), but it took me A YEAR, and a full re-lodgement, to get the Case re-opened. This is also a delaying tactic, which serves the Insurer (in this case), by running the Complainant “out of time” to launch Court action. I paid premiums to CGU for 17 years, for a financial service/product, which, when finally needed, would offer to pay out (original offer was only 1/3 of premiums paid, or, just over 0.5% of the sum insured) less than the premiums I paid…let alone being just 3.5% of the sum insured that I paid them for…Hi ho, Hi ho, it’s off to Court we go…
Given the Choice tenacity for Consumer rights, perhaps Choice could undertake a survey of the satisfaction/not, of Consumers in the A.F.C.A…and WIDELY publicize the results (and the fact that they are doing a survey)?