We provide you with professionally researched General Advice so that you can make an informed decision about what policy suits you best.
We are able to negotiate high quality cover at a lower cost than clients can buy for themselves because of the $millions of client premiums that we handle in placing their insurance in the market.
Our most important function as our clients’ broker is to represent you in arranging a prompt and fair claim settlement. We provide clients with initial advice about the best way to proceed with their claim and from then the insurer and /or loss adjuster manage the claim unless there is a dispute. In this event, it is our role to step in and negotiate on our client’s behalf to resolve any issues and to achieve the best possible outcome.
Most insurers discount their premiums for Donnellys because of our premium volume and administrative savings through our electronic trading system. This discount is passed on to you and more than offsets our broker fee.
Errors or Omissions Protection
For the added protection of Donnellys clients, we have arranged Professional Indemnity Insurance coverage in case we make a mistake in arranging your insurance which causes you a financial loss. This is a unique benefit of dealing through a licensed insurance broker.
Professional Association Members
Donnellys is a member of the National Insurance Brokers Association and we commit to the Insurance Brokers code of practice. This code is intended to establish standards of good business practice and service for members in dealings with their clients.
We have an Internal Dispute Resolution System within Donnellys to handle any client complaints about our service to them. If a client is not satisfied with our response to a written complaint, they are entitled refer the complaint to the Australian Financial Complaints Authority for resolution of the dispute.
Question: Which companies are you agents for?
Legally we represent our clients as their agent ….. we are not agents for any insurance company. We are obliged to provide you with professionally researched advice so that you can make an informed decision about what policy suits you best. If we were an agent of an insurer we would have a conflict of interest with our duty to you as our client.
Question: I haven’t heard of that company you have recommended?
Many insurers choose not to advertise heavily in the media as they prefer to deal through brokers to save marketing costs and administrative costs in dealing directly with customers or they may have a particular market niche. Therefore these companies can be relatively unknown to the general public but can be much more substantial than the names we see in the media on a regular basis. Donnellys has a responsibility to ensure that any insurer we recommend to clients is an authorised insurer under Australian prudential regulations and preferably has an external independent financial security rating at an approved level.
Question: Can I start my policy now before my current policy expires?
We normally advise clients not to cancel another policy before expiry because that may incur a penalty charge by their insurer. However, if the existing cover is not adequate or the price difference is large enough it may be worthwhile transferring cover immediately. If clients are paying monthly directly to an insurer it is usually possible to cancel a policy mid-term without penalty, providing sufficient notice is provided to the insurer and finance institution.
Question: Can I get a discount for combining both my car and home policies with you?
Insurers that provide a multi-policy discount as a marketing ploy to get more business often charge more in the first place so receiving a multi-policy discount may be false economy! The quality of their products may be inferior as well which is more important than a possible cheaper premium.
Donnellys focus is on providing clients with the “best value” policy on an individual basis which takes account of the quality of the product and the premium cost. However, if the individual policies provide good cover and price then we can combine those policies into one competitive package when the situation fits.
Question: Can I arrange cover over the phone with you?
Most of the policies we handle can be done electronically with insurers in which case they do not need any paper work signed. Accordingly most policies can be handled over the phone and we allow 14 days credit for clients to pay their premiums or we can arrange pay by the month premium instalments.
Question: My premium has increased but I have not had any claims?
Australia has a problem with a very small premium pool (2% of the world market) and a high natural disaster claims occurrence such as storms, floods, bush-fires (well in excess of 2% of the world market). Accordingly, premiums need to rise across the board to sustain the insurance industry in Australia.
However, you can be assured that we research the insurance market constantly to ensure that we offer you the best value policy available in our opinion on renewal each year and we will recommend a change of insurer when that is warranted.
Question: What methods of premium payment do you offer?
We offer two methods of payment: annually or monthly. Our monthly payment system is handled by a financier which pays your premium in advance to your selected insurer so you repay them monthly including a small finance charge.
Some Insurers offer monthly premium payments “at no extra cost” as a marketing edge but often the annual premium is higher and includes a margin for instalment payments so there might not be any saving as expected. Their policy coverage may not be as good either. Refer to the Easypay section of our Website for further information.
Question: How do you choose which insurer to place my policy with?
Some insurers only deal directly with the public but most deal through brokers and some deal only through brokers to reduce their operating and marketing costs. We deal through a selected number of preferred insurers which provide quality cover, competitive premiums, prompt and fair claims service and are financially stable.
Generally we obtain at least 3 quotations from a range of insurers that we know are competitive for a particular policy &/or market segment and which satisfy our service standards.
Our recommendation to you would be based upon our assessment of which product provides you with the best value protection taking account the quality of the cover to be provided and the premium competitiveness.
Question: I’m late paying my premium – am I still covered?
Under our agreement terms with your insurer, you need to advise us by the expiry date of your policy if it is your intention to renew your policy. If you need further time to pay your premium, we can arrange interim cover for up to 14 days for you to make payment or we can arrange a pay by the month facility for you.
Question: Will it cost me more to deal through Donnellys?
We earn our income from a mixture of commission payable by an insurer for administration services we provide them when we arrange policies and a broker fee payable by our client for services to them.
The commission we receive from an insurer does not increase the premium cost to you. Our broker fee is often more than offset by premium savings we can negotiate for our clients which range up to 15% discount.
Usually the policies we offer contain extra cover benefits which we negotiate on behalf of our clients with our recommended insurers.
Question: What happens when I have a claim – do you assist me?
We are here to advise you about the best way to proceed with your claim in order to achieve a prompt and fair settlement. You may need advice about some technical cover aspects of your claim which are happy to provide to assist you as part of our service to you.
While we only arrange clients’ insurance coverage with reputable insurance companies which have demonstrated a high level of claims service, there are times when a claim, or part of it, may be rejected by an insurer for various reasons. Sometimes it is due to their staff’s human error, sometimes incorrect or insufficient information supplied or incorrect policy contract wording interpretation.
That’s when it is important to have Donnellys “batting for you” to represent your interests in negotiating the best outcome possible for your claim using our expert technical knowledge of policy contracts and negotiation skills with the insurer’s claim management.
We are on your side … not the insurers’!