Woman Told by Insurers – “You Owe Us”

A woman who had a car stolen from her driveway was then told by the car insurance company that she owed them £2705.

What is the story here exactly? Basically, it all started when Jonelle Garriques went to get in her car one morning, only to discover it was no longer there.

It was stolen…and what is the first thing you do after finding your car gone? You phone the Police of course, but then after that you call your car insurance company to inform them of what has happened.

You can imagine the surprise when Jonelle phoned up her insurer, only to be told that she owed them money. The reason? Apparently she didn’t inform them of a recent house move, which meant the policy was no longer valid in their opinion.

The payout she would have received for her Honda Jazz was £2700, but because she didn’t tell them of her move to Birmingham (where her policy would have been more expensive) this meant the insurer held onto her payout, and then even demanded that she pay them an extra £5 to cover costs.

I’m not really sure what to make of this story. On the one side you could sympathise with the woman and the fact she is not going to get any kind of payout for her stolen car.

However, when you consider that she didn’t tell her insurance company of a change of address, then ultimately she probably has to face the reality of the situation…that her policy either becomes invalid or there should have been a new monthly charge.

In this particular case, because the area Jonelle moved seems to attract a higher number of thefts per year than her old area, it would appear that if she did tell her car insurance company about the move then her premium would have become more expensive.

That’s the way I see things anyway, but as always with these type of stories you never really get the full facts, and it could very well be that Jonelle deserves to get a payout.

This is why she is going to court and appealing the decision in a bid to get what she believes is owed to her, although if unsuccessful in her bid it is possible an extra £300 could be added to her bill.

“When I moved down to Birmingham I didn’t change my address with them (the car insurer) – I just literally forgot,” she commented.

At the end of the day, if there is one thing we can take away from this story it is you should always let your car insurance company know of any changes to your circumstances, whether it be a change of address, change of car, or change of job, or change of where the car is parked overnight. Pick up the phone and let them know, because if you don’t then you could find yourself out of pocket.

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