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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71050
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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On the Friday I had a renewal car insurance quote from A Plan

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On the Friday I had a renewal car insurance quote from A Plan (underwritten by Zurich) who I have been with for many years. It was expensive but as I have been with them for a long time I told them to go ahead. Over the weekend I thought about how expensive it had become and a comment the female made about how they were probably getting back some of the money they had paid out on a no-fault claim I had made that year. I thought that was completely wrong and that comment rankled with me, so for the first time in many years I looked on the internet at other companies. I found one that was £200+ cheaper - from the Post Office, underwritten by the Co-Op. It was identical in every way so I signed up for it. First thing Monday morning I rang A Plan and said I would not now be going with their insurance as I had found something much cheaper online and had signed up for it. The A Plan guy was extremely put out and demanded to see the new insurance paperwork as he felt it was much too cheap and had I declared the no-fault claim and the 3 points on my licence. I said I had and that I was not aware I would have to show him any paperwork as my new policy was my business. He was extremely annoyed, bordering on aggressive. He said their policy paperwork had already been sent to me and I would have to send it back. I received their paperwork a couple of days later and put it in an envelope to return to them, unsigned of course. A few days later I just could not find the envelope, I searched absolutely everywhere, including emptying my recycling bin! I think its the first time in my life I've ever lost any paperwork - very odd. But there we are, it was lost. I sent them a letter confirming I had decided not to go with their policy as discussed over the phone and apologising that I had lost the paperwork. Assuming all was well I then went on holiday to Jamaica (lucky me!) a couple of days later for two weeks. On my return there was a letter from them with a couple of lines saying I declared I had lost my paperwork - I had to sign it and send it back. I did this straight away, noting on the bottom of the letter that I had just returned from abroad so was not sure when it was sent to me but here it was signed. I have now received a letter from them saying I owe them £120 for the cancellation of the policy. Are they right to demand this money? I cancelled by phone, followed up with a confirmation of cancellation letter and did not sign any paperwork. Apparently if I dont pay this £120 within 7 days they will take me to court.
Eve Hirst
Did you cancel within the terms of the contract?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

I dont know. I put their paperwork straight into an envelope when it arrived and then promptly lost it, I never read any of the terms and did not sign my acceptance of them.

Did you agree any cooling off rights?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

No, it wasnt any part of the conversation I had with the female or the male.

If you didn't agree cancellation rights under the contract then none will exist in law. This is a renewal not a new policy and so they are not caught by the requirement to give you 7 days to cancel.

In any event, most insurance companies will agree to cancellations though.

The issue here is what charges can be levied. They are entitled to claim for their admin costs although you should ask for a breakdown of their admin costs to ascertain whether its accurate.

If you were insured for a short time then they are entitled to claim for that period.

If its just 3 days though then its not likely that would amount to £120.

It might be worth asking for sight of their costings but it is likely you would be liable for something I'm afraid.
Jo C. and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Thank you for this. I'm not sure I entirely understand 'they are not caught by the requirement to give you 7 days to cancel'. Does this mean they are supposed to give me 7 days to cancel without charge or because its a renewal I can cancel at any time (within reason) without charge?




No, they are not under that obligation to do that for the reasons above.

Even if they were you would still be liable for admin costs and the period of insurance.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Thank you for this, it has been most helpful.

No problem

All the best