My daughter's car was stolen the night after another car in the same house. Why is the insurer refusing the claim?

Last Saturday night my daughter and her boyfriend had their house broken into. The thieves took two sets of keys, one for each car parked on the drive. They took his car. The police came round on the Sunday morning when all was discovered. The police said, in their experience, the thieves would not come back. They gave advice on security for the house but did not talk about the car that was left (a well-worn 2003 Micra). The emergency locksmith secured the house but could not do anything about the car. The next night the thieves returned and took the Micra. They were heard driving off and the police were called. They were caught, but crashed the car - writing it off. The insurers of the Micra are refusing the claim because my daughter did not 'protect her vehicle from loss or damage'. They said she should have used the spare key to drive the car to a secure place. Like where, the street? She needed the car for work the next day. I thought insurance was there to protect you against unforeseen circumstances? Your comments would be welcome. Thank you for your time.

Asked on 14 July 2020 by im30

Answered by Tim Kelly
Tricky one. The insurer would have grounds to refuse if you had not taken reasonable precautions to protect your asset. Could another vehicle have been parked in front of the Micra? Could you have disconnected the battery terminal? I would be arguing that your daughter was still in shock, and it was the last thing on her mind. Raise a complaint with the insurer, then escalate to the Financial Ombudsman and explain the situation. Make sure that the emotional distress element is emphasised in the complaint.
Tags: insurance
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