This follows the commencement of the new Natural Disaster Response Model between The Earthquake Commission (EQC) and eight insurers, previously announced in November 2020. The partnership model has a singular focus on improved customer outcomes and sees insurers managing claims for EQC’s natural disaster insurance cover – called EQCover – on behalf of EQC.
"The improved model gives customers simplicity and clarity at a time they need it most," said Sid Miller, EQC Chief Executive. "Instead of dealing with EQC as well as your insurer, customers will now just deal directly with their insurer for the lodgement, assessment and settlement of all future claims."
Tim Grafton, CE Insurance Council New Zealand, added: "We know that in the event of a natural disaster customers need the best support they can get during what can be a very stressful time. The new collaborative partnership between EQC and insurers delivers a world-first scheme – putting the customer at the heart of one of the most unique and responsive natural disaster response platforms globally."
Streamlining the claim settlement process
The eight private insurance companies, representing more than 20 insurance brands, are AA Insurance, Chubb, FMG, Ando (Hollard), IAG, MAS, Vero and Tower. Together, they have worked with EQC and the Insurance Council of New Zealand to deliver a partnership model that streamlines the claim settlement process and experience for customers through the effective exchange of information.
Miller emphasises that while insurers will handle the claims, a robust quality assurance system underpins the model to ensure EQC’s obligations will continue to be delivered consistently and fairly for all homeowners entitled to EQCover. Under the new partnership model, insurers will assess, manage and settle the entire claim – including the EQCover portion – up to the statutory capped level of damage under the EQC Act , and then any claim under their private insurance to cover additional losses up to their sum insured.
Insurers will also provide data to EQC about where insured homes are located, so EQC can better model New Zealand’s exposure to – and understanding of – natural hazard risks.
Earlier this month, the Insurance Council of New Zealand launched its te reo name, Te Kāhui Inihua o Aotearoa.