Whether they would have honoured any claim that you made or not, we will never know because you have made one. If they did not, then it would be a case of getting the telephone recording that it was their error. If it was their error, they have not got a leg to stand on and I would be very surprised if they let the matter go to the Financial Ombudsman which would be your recourse if they refuse to pay the claim.
I don’t know what you mean when you say they have refused to give you a copy of the telephone call but they’ve given you a copy of the transcript. The transcript would be the wording and what’s confusing me is that you say it’s inaccurate in audible and cut in places which implies that you have a recording of sorts.
You should now make a Subject Access Request, in writing, under section 7 of the Data Protection Act asking for a copy of the recording and any other information which they hold on you. There is a statutory fee of £10 and they have 40 days to comply.
If they don’t comply, you can make a complaint to the Information Commissioner and also make an application to court for a court order to compel them to comply and you can ask the court to award costs against them.
It really is a case of whether they would have paid out on any claims over the period that you thought you were insured or not. If they would have paid out, that you are not entitled to the money back because you did have the cover. If they would have not, then you are entitled because they took the money without risk. Of course, they will say they would have paid out which is what they have done.
I don’t think you have a brilliant case to take to the Small Claims Court but I think you have an excellent complaint to make to the Financial Ombudsman Service and the beauty of that of course is that it is not only free of charge but it’s free of risk.
Can I clarify anything for you?
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If this is a Small Claims Court matter, then costs are not normally awarded against the losing party in the Small Claims Court.
Provided it is in the Small Claims Court, then if you lose, it is unlikely that you would have to pay costs other than nominal solicitors costs of hundred pounds plus any expenses.
I think that you are claim has a 50% chance of success at best. It could go either way in court and I would not like to put my money on either party.
There is another point here not directly related to the premiums and that is that they are in breach of contract. The difficulty with bringing a breach of contract claim is that you haven’t suffered any loss, and that comes back down to the fact that you haven’t made a claim.
They should have sent you the policy schedule, your statement of fact (all the details that you gave them including your address) and the key facts of the policy.
They don’t have to be in hardcopy, they can be by email.
One bit of good news is that if this goes to court, the matter is decided on the balance of probabilities and hence, you only need one small bit of information to swing it in your favour and who will succeed. It is the lack of loss from you which is the problem however the fact that they may have lied through their teeth.
To bring a claim, you have to suffer loss and that’s where the problem lies.
I would not disagree that you have been treated shabbily.
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I accept everything you say. I believe you completely. The problem is, as I have said a couple of times, whilst they are in breach of contract, you have not actually suffered any loss and that may be the view that the court take.
They may decide that there has been a total breakdown of consideration and that the insurance company didn’t provide anything at all and didn’t provide the cover and hence would refund you but I still think you have a 50% chance of succeeding.
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What you have been told about the Statement of Fact is absolutely true.
However the normal procedure is that you only tell the insurance company of something is wrong. As you quite rightly say however this went to the wrong address and hence you wouldn’t know. I’m assuming that you have no contact with this other address, but it’s not a previous address of yours or suchlike.
Many contracts taken out over the phone never get followed up don’t need to be followed up in writing. That is no legal requirement for an agreement to be in writing except in respect of the sale of land/property.