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I cancelled my policy with M & S over the phone Jan 2013 prior to renewal.

 

. I had my first policy with them jan 2012 to 2013.

 

I bought a different policy with Towergate.

 

Now I have just made a claim with Towergate and needed to also trace my previous insurance

i..e. m&S 2012 - 2013.(needed for the same claim - subsidence)

 

To my horror i discovered that they had not cancelled my policy

and i have a policy running at the same time as my current Towergate policy.

 

I am now panicking as I thought having 2 policies is illegal?

 

I have already opened a claim with Towergate I have told them i have no other policy as to my mind i had cancelled and did not know i had it.

 

No documentation received in post.

 

Could the fact that M&S have failed to cancel my policy and I have failed to cancel my own direct debit make my claim void.

 

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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It is not illegal to have 2 Insurance policies. But it is illegal to make 2 claims for the same damage.

 

It may be quite simple.

 

1) You could contact M&S to find out why they did not cancel the policy when you instructed them to do so. Also inform them of the new Insurance you have arranged and the recent claim you have made on the new Insurance. Ask them whether they want to cancel the Insurance from the date you requested or to contribute towards the claim. I suspect that they will want to cancel. It is then just a case of continuing the claim with Towergate.

 

or

 

2) On the otherhand, if you were absent minded and did not actually instruct M&S to cancel the policy and let it automatically be renewed, it is a bit more complicated. You will then need to advise Towergate of the M&S policy details and also contact M&S claim department to advise them of the claim event, plus Towergates details. It will then be up to M&S and Towergate to sort out your claim.

 

The way you should proceed depends on whether you definitely told M&S to cancel the policy.

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subsidence - surely you mean buildings insurance?

 

dx

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subsidence - surely you mean buildings insurance?

 

dx

 

I am sure that I did not read 'subsidence' last night and the original post was edited.

 

If it is a subsidence claim, then both Insurers need to be told about there being two policies in force. Suggest that focus0125 contacts M&S & Towergate claims departments to tell them what has happened. They can work out between them what to do. Without further information, I would recommend both policies are kept in force until it is worked out exactly what the Insurers want to do with the subsidence claim.

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http://www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk/publications/technical_notes/building-subsidence.htm

 

"problems caused by a change of insurers

 

We see cases where the consumer has changed their buildings insurer and then made a claim for subsidence. The new insurer says that the damage caused by the subsidence pre-dates its policy and so should be covered by the previous insurer - but the previous insurer does not agree.

 

The ABI published its Domestic Subsidence Agreement to deal with these situations. Insurers subscribing to the agreement should handle “change of insurer claims” as follows:

 

Where the claim is made eight weeks or less from the start date of the current policy, the previous insurer will deal with the claim.

Where the claim is made one year or more from the start date of the current policy, the current insurer will accept the claim.

Where the claim is notified more than eight weeks but less than one year from the start date of the current policy, the claim will be accepted and dealt with by the insurer who was first notified about the claim - and the cost of the settlement will be shared between both insurers.

The guidelines to the ABI’s agreement say that “the only practical solution is for the Agreement to be driven by the date of notification”. This means it is irrelevant whether the bulk of the damage occurred before the current policy started.

 

If the consumer was aware of subsidence when they took out the new policy and did not disclose it, the current insurer may still be able to “avoid” the policy - in other words, treat it as if it never existed - on grounds of material non-disclosure.

 

But being aware of cracking is not necessarily the same as being aware of subsidence - and most consumers do not have expert knowledge of these things. So establishing exactly what the consumer knew when they took out the policy is extremely important.

 

The Domestic Subsidence Agreement does not apply where a property has changed hands - and there has been a change of policyholder."

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