Safire Insurance Newsletter 2014


February 2015
We lack trust
South Africans rate the lowest on a recent study of how citizens trust their government, with only 16% of us having trust in our leadership. According to the annual “Trust Barometer” released by Edelman, a major public relations firm, global trust levels are at their lowest since the Great Recession. South Africans have been near the bottom of the list for quite a while, this latest rating dropping down one point from the 2013 figures. Significantly, South Africans do trust big business, at 64% (up from 63%), close to USA levels (60%, up from 58%).
To read more…
No power = no water
Eskom’s crisis situation is having a wider impact on South Africans beyond plunging us into a lifestyle of candlelit dinners, cooking on the braai and conversations rather than TV. Municipalities around the country are starting to have issues with the filling of water reservoirs to ensure regular water supplies, while water treatment plants are also being affected. But we are not alone: according to the 2015 World Economic Forum Global Risks Report, water crises this year rank as the number one global risk in terms of impact, rated higher than nuclear weapons or global disease pandemics.
To read more…
Maintain your asset
For most home-owners, maintaining their home is a seemingly never-ending chore. But failure to attend to essentials such as cleaning gutters and waterways, fixing leaking roofs and pipes, and checking on geysers and electrical wiring can be a costly business. A recent decision by the Ombudsman for Short-term Insurance determined that an insurer is not responsible for neglected home maintenance that leads to damage. Says the Ombudsman: “Your insurance company will not cover you for maintenance, and you should conduct regular maintenance checks of your property and attend to necessary repairs.”
To
Eston Colour Run 2015
Safire recently co-sponsored a “colour station” at the Eston Dekade Colour Run, held at Eston, close to Pietermaritzburg. This is the second such community fun run, which this year aimed to raise funds for a swimming pool at the local primary school. Runners are ‘coloured up’ with bags of paint, making this one of the brightest community races around. Safire’s Ruth Bezuidenhout, General Manager of the Crop Division, says, “It was lots of fun and was a great way for Safire to show our appreciation for the ongoing support we receive from this very active farming community.”
Well done Kevan
Safire recognises that South Africa’s future lies in its children’s educational upliftment. One of the recipients of its social commitment programme is Kevan du Plessis, who has achieved exemplary academic results throughout his time at Carter High School in Pietermaritzburg. We congratulate Kevan on his outstanding results and wish him well for his Grade 12 year. Safire is similarly committed to its education initiative for talented black underprivileged children at Cordwalles Preparatory School, which sees these children being mentored until they matriculate and possibly beyond, a perhaps fitting reminder of Safire’s slogan: “Short-term insurers, long term partners”.

Why claims are rejected #10

The rights of local consumers are protected by the Ombudsman for Short-term Insurance, who provides an independent, fair and affordable dispute-resolution solution to those members of the public who choose to contest decisions made by their insurance company. The latest in our series of why claims might be rejected entails material non-disclosure at the underwriting stage. The complainant’s claims record, any lapse in insurance cover, prior applications for cover being rejected, and judgments on a credit record are all material to the assessment of the insured’s risk, and it is imperative that such information is disclosed. For example, people with a bad credit record apparently have a higher propensity to file fraudulent claims than people with a clean credit record. If complainants are not fully truthful and it is revealed later, the claim may be rejected.

Add to
your will
Most expensive

Research shows that the colour of a vehicle is so important to would-be buyers that it can affect their decision to buy or not. This same research indicates that the most popular colour for motor vehicles is white. This is known as the “Apple effect”, referring to the Californian tech giant’s release of all its latest technology such as the iPod in white. White also has benefits in terms of deflecting heat and adding to a vehicle’s visibility against the darker road surface.

It’s something that most of us don’t like to think about, but there are certain essential measures to take in the event of your death. Executors and next-of-kin will appreciate knowing vital personal details such as email and cell-phone passwords and banking access codes. To ensure complete security, it is best to keep this information in the same place as your will, preferably under lock and key. Such forward planning can make things easier at a difficult and stressful time for most family members.

With Eskom load shedding now a regular occurrence, South African insurance companies are receiving some interesting claims. One, in which a woman gave herself a disastrous home hair-styling, must rank as one of the most expensive hair-care sessions in history. Halfway through using her hairdryer, the power went out, the woman put the hairdryer down on the bed, went shopping and returned to find that her house had burned down when the power came back on and restarted the hairdryer.

Changing lives

3D-printed medical prosthetics can be a miraculous transformation for amputees, cancer suffers and others who have lost limbs and body parts. Animals are also benefiting from this amazing technology: in 2012, a team of engineers and scientists created a new beak for a bald eagle that was shot in the face by hunters, while a 3D-printed left foot helped Buttercup the duck walk normally for the first time. Now Derby the dog discovers the wonders of 3D-printed prosthetics... Click Here

Economic Tidbits
Economic Tidbits
Economic Tidbits
• 918% in 12 months - the growth in sales of ‘dashcams’ or dashboard cameras in the UK according to one report. With motorists able to record motor accidents, some UK insurance companies are offering reduced premiums if cars are installed with dashcams.

• 68,1m units - what Gartner predicts shipments on wearable electronic devices for fitness will reach in 2015. Wearable fitness tech is increasingly being subsidised by health insurance companies to get clients to adopt healthier lifestyles.

• 1% point - the drop in SA’s unemployment rate in the fourth quarter of 2014, leaving the official unemployment rate at 24,3% or 4.9 million people.

• R205 billion - what SA’s top 10 richest people are worth. The country's wealthiest person is new to the Rich List: Ivan Glasenberg, the South African-born boss of Swiss-based mining company Glencore, whose fortune was worth R61.3-billion last month.

• 46% - the percentage of US businesses expected to implement outcomes-based wellness plans that under Obamacare, offer reward incentives of up to 30% off insurance premiums to employees who lose weight, control cholesterol, watch their blood glucose levels and give up smoking. Those who don’t comply, suffer penalties.

• R7,5 billion - an estimate of what the “human error” involved in the shutting down of Koeberg recently cost South Africa.

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