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Old Thursday 20th October 2005, 06:24   #1
checklg
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Camera Insurance

Anyone had any good experiences? I need to take some insurance out for equipment use in the field so I'd appreciate any suggestions on who to go to.

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Old Thursday 20th October 2005, 06:40   #2
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Not good experience, but definitely do not go with E&L! Will try anything to get out of paying, apparently they try it on with everyone who claims. They did finally pay up but not before I took the matter to the Insurance Ombudsman.
If I was not such an awkward b**stard who is prepared to fight his corner I would of lost a £5000+ claim.
Be especially careful of the terms where special provisions are made for theft from unattended vehicles, the restrictions are almost impossible to meet in most of them, but they will usually charge you extra for this service. Most if you read them carefully say that there must be no access route to the boot area of the vehicle from the passenger compartment. A little survey found that less than 1% of vehicles physically could meet this requirement, usually expensive sports cars and Rolls Royces. Even cars like my father-in-laws Rover 75 saloon actually have drop down seats to allow long items to be placed into the boot.
If you find yourself in this position and they refuse to pay, talk to a good solicitor, as they will tell you, the terms and conditions in a policy have to be reasonable. Making such an impossible condition is not reasonable, hence the reason E&L had to back down, but it still appears and I know from other forums they have used clause this to refuse many claims.
Also if you do carry lots of expensive equipment in your car, consider investing in a security device called a pac-safe, available from good outdoor shops for around £40, these actually when used consitute a locked compartment in insurance terms.
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Old Thursday 20th October 2005, 06:57   #3
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I covered my camera and lens under my home contents insurance (with Norwich Union). A while later my tripod got knocked over and the camera was totally destroyed. I phoned Norwich Union, that day within the week they had decided that the camera was unrepairable and agreed to replace it - only slight delay was caused by problems with getting the camera from Canon! I was very pleased with the service I received, my camera was repalced with the current model and all I had to pay was a £60 policy excess.

So my advice would be to see fi yu can add the camera/lens to your contents insurance as a named item - it worked for me.
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Old Thursday 20th October 2005, 07:10   #4
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I like Peter, must admit to having had good service on home contents insurance too (barclays) though they were not willing to give cover for theft from unattended vehicles which was important for me.
I am fortunate to spend most of my working days driving between customer sites on the Wirral and along the North Wales coast which allows me many good places to spend my lunch hour, unfortunately it also means leaving my gear in the car whilst on site working hence the need for unattended vehicle cover.
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Old Friday 21st October 2005, 13:50   #5
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Thanks for the advice folks. I think I'll look at getting my stuff insured as an extension to my existing home contents insurance.

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Old Friday 21st October 2005, 19:04   #6
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Just make sure it covers unattended car if required
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Old Friday 21st October 2005, 19:45   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stuartlawrie
Not good experience, but definitely do not go with E&L! Will try anything to get out of paying, apparently they try it on with everyone who claims. They did finally pay up but not before I took the matter to the Insurance Ombudsman.
If I was not such an awkward b**stard who is prepared to fight his corner I would of lost a £5000+ claim.
Be especially careful of the terms where special provisions are made for theft from unattended vehicles, the restrictions are almost impossible to meet in most of them, but they will usually charge you extra for this service. Most if you read them carefully say that there must be no access route to the boot area of the vehicle from the passenger compartment. A little survey found that less than 1% of vehicles physically could meet this requirement, usually expensive sports cars and Rolls Royces. Even cars like my father-in-laws Rover 75 saloon actually have drop down seats to allow long items to be placed into the boot.
If you find yourself in this position and they refuse to pay, talk to a good solicitor, as they will tell you, the terms and conditions in a policy have to be reasonable. Making such an impossible condition is not reasonable, hence the reason E&L had to back down, but it still appears and I know from other forums they have used clause this to refuse many claims.
Also if you do carry lots of expensive equipment in your car, consider investing in a security device called a pac-safe, available from good outdoor shops for around £40, these actually when used consitute a locked compartment in insurance terms.
That's really interesting, Stuart - I have a policy with E&L, and was concerned about this type of exclusion, when reading the policy small print.

It says:

  • "any insured items must be in a locked and separately secure boot or compartment, away from the passenger sections"
  • "estate cars must have a factory fitted cover in place, and in use, which completely obscures the items from view"
  • "storage compartments must not be accessible from the driver's area, or accessible by removal of a shelf, panel or partition"
  • "we [E&L] are not liable for theft from vehicles if the equipment is not out of sight and locked in an enclosed boot or compartment that is not accessible by removal of a shelf or partition"
To attempt to clarify the situation, I had a very long telephone conversation with E&L, who assured me that "the cover is valid, providing the factory-fitted parcel shelf was in place, completely obscuring items from view", and that their reference to "removal of a shelf or partition" was related to my removal of said partition, not a thief's.

I pushed hard on this issue, and asked if they were happy to be quoted - they agreed. (I have a list of exact details, as well).

I think in light of what you say, Stuart, I might just give them another call, and rattle the cage a bit harder. It'd be a very expensive error, if they could wriggle out of paying out (heaven forbid that I should even have to claim!).

Also, interesting note about Pac-Safe - will investigate this.

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Old Tuesday 1st November 2005, 16:18   #8
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I have just added all risk personal insurance to cover my scope and camera gear, to my contents insurance. I am covered for up to £4000 of gear for half the cost of specialist camera insurers. And the excess is only £75 - the specialist insurer i checked out had a £150 excess!

Also, i can pay monthly without any interest charges. Cost me less than five pounds a month. Excellent stuff.
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Old Saturday 5th November 2005, 15:12   #9
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Do NOT take insurance from E&L !

Right then... some follow-up on my earlier thread.

After a long series of phone calls with E&L, I have determined that the "theft from unattended vehicle" element of their cover is basically not worth the paper it's written on! Initially, speaking to people who just give quotes, I was assured (as I had been before) that the cover would be valid for theft from the boot of a hatchback, provided items were out of view.

However, when I spoke to someone more senior in the claims department, who actually read the policy wording, the story was entirely different... The exact words he used were "in fact, this is very poor cover indeed". When I asked if he could think of a single vehicle on the market which would meet the criteria and thus be covered, he struggled for a moment, and then said he couldn't.

I have eventually managed to get a full refund of all monies paid to E&L, and would strongly discourage anyone considering their product from taking out a policy.
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Old Saturday 5th November 2005, 23:45   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbradnum

I have eventually managed to get a full refund of all monies paid to E&L, and would strongly discourage anyone considering their product from taking out a policy.
I originally considered this company, but couldn't understand why a policy covering equipment at home only, was only a few pounds a month less than their policy for in the home and in the field. I didn't need cover for my equipment in the house - it was already covered on my home contents policy and it seems daft to insure it twice!

I only wanted extra cover for when i was out - but, of course, they don't do that. Hence i added all risks to my home contents instead. This saved me A LOT of money, for what is essentially, better cover.
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Old Sunday 6th November 2005, 07:58   #11
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Ho-hum - wish I'd seen this thread before I took out my E&L policy...
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Old Sunday 6th November 2005, 09:01   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith Reeder
Ho-hum - wish I'd seen this thread before I took out my E&L policy...
At least you know now, before you've had to make a claim!
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Old Wednesday 9th November 2005, 19:06   #13
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One option is to get a large metal box, a solid padlock, and a second lock with chain. Place the box with camera gear in the boot, out of view. Use the padlock to seal the box. Use the chain and lock to attach the box to the frame of the car. There are special secure boxes that we used to use to store mobile phones at work, but they cost a bomb. B&Q do steel boxes for a modest price. The only problem is that the box takes up space and is heavy. A determined thief with a crowbar could probably break the chain, and/or pick the padlock, but most thieves are lazy incompetent opportunists and would not expect to encounter Fort Knox 'lite' in the car boot.

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Old Wednesday 9th November 2005, 21:38   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbradnum
Right then... some follow-up on my earlier thread.

After a long series of phone calls with E&L, I have determined that the "theft from unattended vehicle" element of their cover is basically not worth the paper it's written on! Initially, speaking to people who just give quotes, I was assured (as I had been before) that the cover would be valid for theft from the boot of a hatchback, provided items were out of view.

However, when I spoke to someone more senior in the claims department, who actually read the policy wording, the story was entirely different... The exact words he used were "in fact, this is very poor cover indeed". When I asked if he could think of a single vehicle on the market which would meet the criteria and thus be covered, he struggled for a moment, and then said he couldn't.

I have eventually managed to get a full refund of all monies paid to E&L, and would strongly discourage anyone considering their product from taking out a policy.


Just to reiterate my own case to anyone who does get caught out by this clause, I finally got them to cough up on my claim but only after threatening them with the insurance ombudsman.
I spoke to a solicitor, thankfully for free who looked at the policy and said that actually the exclusion is illegal as any exclusion in an insurance document has to be reasonable and possible to comply with in the majority of circumstances.
As David pointed out earlier even by E&L's own admission they cannot think of any car which meets the "Not accessible by removal of a partition or shelf!" I do know of one such car - Rolls Royce, but this as my solicitor friend pointed out is not reasonable to expect everyone to be able to drive a Rolls Royce.
E&L are aware of this legal fact but still refuse to remove it as it allows them the grace to catch most people out who are not as cantankerous and obstinate as myself but it really is wrong to have to force these companies to pay up when you pay for their services in the expectation of it protecting you.
As for mortgage payment protection insurances, don't even get me started there............. I am currently off to battle with these people now!
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Old Friday 9th December 2005, 16:23   #15
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Thumbs up Cat Woman

A BIG THANKYOU for all the advice on camera insurance.My equiptment is worth £5ooo and I have been looking for someone to insure with and had read the terms & conditions of E&L (Must have been bored one cold winters night!!)and felt rather put of after reading them! Well I will definately NOT use them now as this forum has confirmed my fears with the equiptment in the car issue. My equiptment will be mainly in the car to and from places and this is a major concern to me.Inurers are so crafty arn't they a lot of people wouldn't have realised about the parcel shelf etc.and would have presumed they were covered. I shall be calling my house contents now and hope they can do something for me.Thanks again for the usefull notes CHEERS!
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