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Old 15th June 2009, 18:13   #1
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Default New trick by Insurance companies

This morning, we had an irate customer shouting at us. He owns a Ford Ikon. He had come for a change of tyre and h bought 2 tubeless Apollo Accelere tyres.

Sometime later(dont know how much), he was on the highway when one tyre burst or had a puncture and he lost control and crashed the car into the divider or something.

The bill came upto 53k for his car repair.

The insurance company rejected the claim because they say he was not supposed to put tubeless tyres on the Ford Ikon. Why? Because in the car manual, it says "Tyre and tube".

He was furious with us for selling him tubeless tyres. He says we should know better than to sell tubeless tyres to older cars!

Any insurance expert here who can shed light on this?
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Old 15th June 2009, 19:44   #2
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Hi Nikhil,

Theoretically speaking, the insurance was provided to a car with standard features. All modifications in car, after getting the insurance, should be notified to the insurer and the premium should be recalculated. Unfortunately, in this case, as the policy holder has got his car modified without notifying the insurer, the insurer has all rights to reject the claims made now.

Last edited by MrinalSinha : 15th June 2009 at 19:54. Reason: Mistake in Grammar!
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Old 15th June 2009, 19:56   #3
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just curious. was he running 2x tubed and 2x tubeless at the same time
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Old 15th June 2009, 22:21   #4
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The customer stands a good chance of getting the claim processed. He needs to get a note from the tyre manufacturer that the tyre he used was equally good or better than tube type. The tyre manufacturer will be happy doing so. Also the car manufacturer will have to endorse the fact tube less tyres do not reduce the performance of the car.

The claim will be settled.
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Old 15th June 2009, 22:31   #5
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Insurance companies at their best.
When was the last time a Ford Ikon was sold with tube type tyres?
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Old 15th June 2009, 22:41   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrinalSinha View Post
Hi Nikhil,

Theoretically speaking, the insurance was provided to a car with standard features. All modifications in car, after getting the insurance, should be notified to the insurer and the premium should be recalculated. Unfortunately, in this case, as the policy holder has got his car modified without notifying the insurer, the insurer has all rights to reject the claims made now.
Fitting a tubless tyre does not amount to any modification .I think the logical way for the customer is to go to courts . It is high time we started a thread on non- paying insurance companies . Most of the private insurance companies try and avoid paying up the claims
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Old 15th June 2009, 22:45   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dushmish View Post
The customer stands a good chance of getting the claim processed. He needs to get a note from the tyre manufacturer that the tyre he used was equally good or better than tube type. The tyre manufacturer will be happy doing so. Also the car manufacturer will have to endorse the fact tube less tyres do not reduce the performance of the car.

The claim will be settled.
From my limited knowledge of law, an argument that the tubeless tyre is as good or better than the tube tyre will not settle the claim in this case. The insurance company will point to the written contract and it would have specifically mentioned (ok assuming this bit) that all insurance claims will be null and void if the car has been modified in any way.

Nowhere would the contract say that claims will be entertained as long as those modifications make the car safer and slower!

The only way out is for the customer to prove that fitting tubeless tyre does not modify the car, or in legalese, does not breach the contract. But one can read the insurance contract to see if there's such a possibility. Nikhil, can you find out which insurance company did your customer had a contract with?

Last edited by greenh0rn : 15th June 2009 at 22:48. Reason: Added more info
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Old 15th June 2009, 22:51   #8
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I know that in UK you need to inform the insurance of any modifications done to the car. Else your insurance becomes null and void. Its there in the terms and conditions of the contracts
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Old 15th June 2009, 22:52   #9
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is there any way to get the tyre manufacturer to help out? if this sets a precedent, their sales are going to be hit
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Old 15th June 2009, 22:52   #10
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@dushmish

The suggested way by you is probably the only way ahead. After getting a note from tyre and vehicle manufacturer the customer will have to fight it in the consumer forum. Still according to the insurance contract, the same stands null and void if the vehicle has been modified after the insurance and the same has not been updated to the insurer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by greatmana2000 View Post
Fitting a tubless tyre does not amount to any modification .I think the logical way for the customer is to go to courts . It is high time we started a thread on non- paying insurance companies . Most of the private insurance companies try and avoid paying up the claims
Fitting a tubeless tyre amounts to modification as the standard fitment is tubed tyres.
I really understand your POV, but the contract states specifically against any modification.

Last edited by MrinalSinha : 15th June 2009 at 22:57. Reason: Multiquote!
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Old 15th June 2009, 22:59   #11
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That is why we have a court of law. To prove that the insurance contract cannot hold a more modern, safer tubeless tyre at fault.
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Old 15th June 2009, 23:05   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nitrous View Post
That is why we have a court of law. To prove that the insurance contract cannot hold a more modern, safer tubeless tyre at fault.
Insurance company will be more than happy to move to the court of law as they don't have anything to loose. If they loose the case which will be atleast a few years from now, all they will have to pay is the amount and the legal expenses. But its the customer who will have to shell out his time and money.

Any lawyers here who can shed more light on appropriate future course of action
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Old 15th June 2009, 23:15   #13
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@Milecruncher, @nitrous,

One would need to read the insurance contract to find out the best legal options available. I'm trying to source one from any private insurer I can find, but not sure if the contracts are standardized among all insurers.
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Old 15th June 2009, 23:22   #14
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Default Fraud!

Did the victim of this fraud name the fraudulent insurance company? I certainly hope he does. This company is either totally incompetent or absolutely without scruples.

The owner of the car replaced his worn out tyres, in itself a good thing, he then went further and replaced them with products made with the latest technology. As long as the wheel size and tyre size remain the same or within tolerable limits it is not a 'modification'. A modification means a change in the essential mechanicals of a vehicle. If the insurance company's logic were to be accepted - they can refuse to settle claims if additional floor mats are put in!

A modification is also to be understood as a change in the specifications of the vehicle as noted in the Registration Certificate (RC book). Referring to the 'Owner's Manual' is ridiculous as the manual is not a statutory document and often the specs shown in the manual vary from the actual specs.

@Nikhilb - Please find out the insurance company involved and post the name here alongwith details of the office & officers concerned.

Cheers,
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Old 15th June 2009, 23:40   #15
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@Greenie --- No idea about the 2 tubeless and 2 tubetype. However, he did replace only two tyres at our place.

@Ravveendrra --- I wish I could get you these details. But this customer is gone for good. He just shouted at us for half an hour this morning. We even told himt ot wait for the Apollo company people who were on their way. He blamed us and held us responsible and stormed away.

You can imagine how this makes me feel. For no fault of ours, we lost a customer.
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