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Claims Count - Jim Tuhey

Published: 16/12/2016

Since our last newsletter, I, like everyone else, have been very busy with my day-to-day duties. The main difference between us however, is that my daily routine is dealing with the things most people assume will never happen to them.

Now, we're not saying Flint House is disaster central, but here is just one small insight:

On Sunday 4 December I got a call from one of our directors, alerting me to the following:

I'm very sorry to say that it was a Flint Private Client who was watching her lovely house and its contents go up in flames.

Whilst I have received many such calls over the years, still nothing, I'm afraid, ever really prepares you for the abject distress of those experiencing this terrible sort of loss. My first reaction was to call our client to help them deal with reporters at the scene and then immediately put everything else in place to ensure our client got what they needed.

Early next day myself and another member of the Flint Private Client team were on-site helping our client deal with the fire brigade and Local Authority Building Control Team. Being on-site to assess the damage and extent of the claim meant that I could liaise with the building insurers directly and arrange to meet with their loss adjusters that afternoon. We then secured the building and gave our client her options for alternative accommodation.

Her high value home policy provided her with like-for-like housing for up to 3 years. And even though she has a large property this time-scale is more than adequate to get the work satisfactorily completed, which was a massive relief to this family.

My report to insurers also triggered the engagement of a specialist forensic scientist to inspect the property; even when the cause of fire may be obvious, an early forensic report is essential for swift agreement of claims payments. New rental accommodation, replacement items, emergency work etc. are all very expensive, so the quick organisation of funding by insurers is essential to greatly ease the burden of this disastrous event. I went on to meet with the forensic scientist to provide background information.

Next, I arranged for one of the senior partners from a firm of chartered building surveyors to meet me and our client at her property. Having previously worked with this firm on several other serious claims I knew that they would have the specialist knowledge and experience to help our client get their home reinstated quickly and to very high standards. Again the benefit of a high net worth policy is that it provides cover for these type of professional fees, which will be fully reimbursed by insurers.

The need for a full protective scaffold and temporary roof were also identified and quotation for the works obtained from a local contractor. So, by Wednesday, myself and the adjuster had checked these costs, which were in line with expectations and organised a schedule of works to ensure that the house would be protected before Christmas.

The need for a full protective scaffold and temporary roof were also identified and quotation for the works obtained from a local contractor. So, by Wednesday, myself and the adjuster had checked these costs, which were in line with expectations and organised a schedule of works to ensure that the house would be protected before Christmas.

We don't want to be the harbinger of doom, but so many individuals, both private and commercial, think that a disastrous event will never happen to them and when it does wonder why their claim is a problem.

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