This post carries on from my original post Ten Lies the NFU Mutual Told Us.
We lodged a claim with the NFU Mutual in November 2017, following water damage after a flood. By November 2018, and frustrated after months of inspections, reports and waiting, we were no nearer to going home. It wasn’t until we lodged our second complaint that we found the ‘Claims Who’s Who Guide’ pdf download on NFU Mutual’s website.
It states: We understand that the claims process can often appear daunting and confusing, with all the technical terminology, complicated processes and different people involved along the way. We have put this handy guide together to give you an understanding of the different people you may come across during your claim and how they will help you throughout the process.
After I read it and digested the information, I was confused. The words I read were nothing like my experience with anyone on the list. Was it a mistake? Why was my experience totally different to that stated?
Lets have a look at some of the people described in the first page of the ‘Handy Guide’:
As the most important member of the team, your active participation will be needed and you might be required to make some decisions during the claim. Rest assured our team will work with you to achieve the best possible outcome. You will be guided and assisted through this process by the professional experts. You might be asked to appoint a number of professionals to assist you as well as instructing the contractor to do the building works.www.nfumutual.com
I know that this first part may seem rather petty to discuss, but we’ve never felt as if we’re the most important part of the team. And as far as making decisions was concerned, they were all made for us! In fact, we’ve constantly felt ignored!
We complained time and time again that we had no idea what was going on with our home. We hadn’t been included in emails so we insisted that we were. Points we made that we thought were important were disregarded. Arguments we put forward had been ignored. Decisions made about our home, and consequently our future, were made without any input at all from us. Sometimes huge decisions were made without our knowledge. Most importantly, our active participation has been hindered rather than needed as stated in this first sentence.
The next sentence refers to the team. So, who is the team? NFU Mutuals’ claims department? Or everyone employed by NFU? Whatever the answer, it’s obvious that the best possible outcome was not achieved.
The professional experts, in the next sentence, probably refer to the surveyor, architect, structural engineer and others who appear later in the handy guide. So I’ll leave their ‘guidance and assistance’ til later to discuss.
You might be asked to appoint a number of professionals to assist you as well as instructing the contractor to do the building works.
This one’s easy! We didn’t appoint anyone! At all!
Hold On! Unless you count the structural engineer we instucted to tell us the truth about the building work carried out by NFU Mutual’s builders. Or the Conservation Officer, who issued a caution to the NFU Mutual’s claims handler for unauthorised work to a listed building. Well then, that would be a Yes! We did appoint those two!
The rest of the roles and responsibilities of the people on the first page are quite self explanatory. We hadn’t come into contact with many of them. Our claim escalated quite quickly from the The NFU Mutual Agent as, after the shenanigans of the first builders, who wanted to complete the repairs to our cottage for less than £10,000!, the claim was escalated to a ‘Large Loss’.
The description of the Claims Handlers and Loss Adjuster who also appear on this page is common knowledge, so I won’t go into their roles. Although, the Loss Adjuster has been quite important in our claim, so I’ll write a post about him/them at a later date.
The people on this page come into play when a claim is considered a ‘Large Loss’. When we look at page 2 of the ‘Handy Guide’ the roles are anything but clear!