James Delingpole

The car insurance industry is a disgusting racket

It’s designed so that as many industries as possible can get their snouts in the trough

24 October 2015

9:00 AM

24 October 2015

9:00 AM

The car insurance industry is a racket: I think we all suspected that. But unless you’ve had personal experience of its devious workings you probably have no idea just how much of a racket. I didn’t myself until just recently when I had to make a claim for a tiny bump on the door of my car. Soon, I found myself sucked into a system that taints almost everyone it touches — insurers, garages, solicitors, car hire firms and claimants alike — with corruption so flagrant it’s hard to believe such a thing could be possible in hyperregulated modern Britain.

It all began when Mark, a nice, decent chap who does odd jobs for us round the house and garden, accidentally reversed his van at low speed into the side of our car in front of our house. The dent was so trivial that I probably wouldn’t have bothered trying to mend it if it hadn’t been a lease vehicle. ‘Whatever happens, I want to get this sorted out as quickly and cheaply and painlessly as possible,’ I said to Mark. ‘Let’s not even go through our insurers, if it’s easier for you.’

Unfortunately, Mark discovered after a few inquiries, it wasn’t one of those cosmetic dents that could be knocked out in a trice. So reluctantly, with his agreement, I put in a claim. I thought it was going to be simple — he admitted liability; there was no disputing the details of what had happened; no one had been hurt. What could possibly go wrong?

My first indication of the kind of vultures I was dealing with were the succession of phone calls inviting me to remember the back pain or similar debilitating complaints I’d suffered as a result.

The initial wave came from cold-callers with Scouse accents; then from people in call centres in India. I kept telling them, ‘Look. I’m fine, the other guy is a friend and I want to keep his costs down.’ But these people have an answer for everything. My compensation pot had already been allocated — as much as £10,000, I was told. And it wouldn’t make any difference to my friend’s insurance status. All I needed to do was give the right answers on the form and the cheque would be in the post.

When I havered over the ethics of this to a young female cold-caller from India, she passed me to her male supervisor. ‘Everything is perfectly above board,’ he said. ‘Have you suffered back pain as a result of your accident?’ ‘No,’ I said. ‘Yes, but still you have been greatly inconvenienced and might yet be experiencing symptoms?’ he prompted. ‘Like what?’ I asked. At which point he began coaching me on exactly the kind of imaginary problems I should report to my doctor in order to expedite my claim.

Well I didn’t, obviously, but I can see why others might be less punctilious. Even if you haven’t set out to cheat the system, those cold-callers can be very persuasive. Ten grand of free money is quite a lot to turn down, especially when you’ve been reassured that it’s already in the price, that no one is going to get hurt and that anyway, you actually might have been slightly injured, it’s just that you haven’t quite realised it yet.

After three or four months, the personal injuries calls dried up, but the hassle wasn’t over. There was still the business of getting the coachwork on the car fixed, which I’d expected would take a couple of days at most. And so, in an honest world, it would do: it’s not like your car needs to be steeped in baby oil for a week before it’s ready for the panel-beating process. That job could have been finished in an afternoon.

But car insurance doesn’t work like that. The system is designed so that as many subsidiary industries as possible can get their snouts in the trough. The panel-beating company will arrange to have your car in for seven days when it only really needed one. This in turn benefits your insurer’s hire company partner, which rents you a vehicle on a like-for-like basis, and often can charge more than the actual repair of your car.

It did in my case: the repair costs were £997; the car hire costs £1,326. Would any of us have permitted such wanton extravagance if we’d been paying for it ourselves? I don’t think so. First, I would have insisted that my car was mended in a day (or a couple, max), as it should have been. Second, I would have rented the cheapest runaround possible, rather than forking out for the top-of-the-range beast that was imposed on me by my insurer to keep me going while I was deprived of my ordinary Skoda.

And guess where I got those repair figures? Only from the solicitor’s letter I had the other day informing me that Mark’s insurance company was contesting my claim — why, it was never explained — and that therefore this solicitor’s firm had been instructed to pursue it on my behalf at the rate of £200 per hour plus VAT. I wouldn’t have to pay this myself, the letter explained. My legal expenses insurance cover would indemnify me. Well great. But this money doesn’t come from nowhere, does it? It will end up, like all those fake whiplash claims, being used to drive up the cost of motor insurance for everyone else.

The average cost of fully comprehensive car insurance is now well over £1,000. If even half of that money is honestly earned and spent, I’d be amazed. Our motor insurance industry is run like a Mafia cartel and almost everyone involved should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves. The Office of Fair Trading claimed to have been investigating the problem three years ago. It doesn’t appear to have made much progress.

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  • KingEric

    I was knocked off the M6 by a Royal Mail truck about 7 or 8 years ago. Neither my son nor I were injured but my car was a write off. I claimed, got a decent price for my old car which I used to buy a replacement and you would have thought, job done. I still get calls saying they understand I was in an accident, etc. At first I was polite but now, as soon as I realise the purpose of the call, I say “I’m not interested. Goodbye” and hang up. Usually they are still talking whilst I do all that. It really is the best way.

    • Aberrant_Apostrophe

      The last call – one of of dozens – I had about a three-year accident I told the caller that I had died as a result of my injuries. That stumped them.

      • Dominic Stockford

        That’s brilliant.

        • Aberrant_Apostrophe

          Thanks. Moral: just be creative and think of something that would never ever appear in their pre-prepared script.

    • Rush_is_Right

      “Hello can I speak to Mr Rush please?”
      “I’m sorry, he’s in the bath. Hold on while I get him….”
      …….. Put the phone down and wait for the caller to give up.

  • Teacher

    I get calls on a daily basis from parts foreign asking whether I’d like to claim for the car accident I had in the last two years. Since I haven’t had an accident I decline and terminate the call. It doesn’t reinforce my faith in the goodness of human nature.

    • Mc

      It may help to change your phone number as well

    • BritishPatriot

      I put the phone down the instant that I hear an Indian voice. It saves so much trouble.

  • I am extremely careful to keep my mobile number private. I give it only to close friends and family. After a friend of mine accidentally reversed into my car, I made the mistake of giving it to my insurance company at that time Direct Line. Almost immediately, I started receiving calls and texts on that private number of the sort Delingpole mentions – whip lash, car rental, and they persisted for months. Car insurance is a criminal racket. After a friend’s daughter accidentally touched a Pakistani lady’s car at a roundabout with her tiny Toyota Aygo (the Aygo was entirely unmarked) she received solicitor’s letters informing her that the ‘victim’s car would cost £5000 to repair, and that the poor passenger inside the almost destroyed car was claiming £12000 for whip lash, pain, lost earnings and mental trauma. Direct Line were up for settling this as a matter of course, but I encouraged my friend to fight the case. She received a statement in which the ‘victim’ claimed that her car was struck at thirty miles an hour while waiting at the roundabout (I say again, the tiny Aygo was unmarked and undamaged). This was accompanied by paid for medical reports stating that the complainant was traumatised and in pain. Even the medical profession are in on it. This is FRAUD on a massive scale, but as we know, fraud is OK now and the police will not even investigate it. It seems that fraudulent statements, medical reports and specious claims for damages are a ‘civil matter’ that is none of the business of police. Funny that – last time I looked, making a false statement in pursuit of gain was a criminal offence.

    • Dominic Stockford

      I was stung for thousands (via insurance) by a lady who claimed she had been written off by me. She sent my insurance company photos and everything – even though I had already warned them that I was aware that she was about to scam them they still paid her and never told me they had. By the time I found out (my next re-insure payment) it was too late. I was done.

    • PaD

      Ill be accused of racism..but the ethnicity you mentioned are bang at it..to the point of deliberately causing accidents

      • Mary Ann

        I agree, it is racist.

        • Alexsandr

          but still true.

  • Jackthesmilingblack


    • Alexsandr

      Yeah. I did that in 2010. got a £1600 car, Trouble is its still running and has done over 200 000 miles. X reg too.

  • davidshort10

    I don’t think one person’s boring and everyday experiences constitute material for a column in a magazine that, if you buy it, costs a lot of money.

    • Mary Ann

      Makes a change from all the hating foreigners comments that are on the political pages.

  • Gilbert White

    You could put basic car insurance on any car not the owner for a few pounds. Who insures 89 year old mass murderers who murdered in the first place because they could not show a current certificate? Or even illegal immigrants?

    • Chas Grant

      Who insures 89 year old mass murderers who murdered in the first
      place because they could not show a current certificate?

      Exactly which certificate are you referring to?

      • BritishPatriot

        Don’t talk to him, he died in 1793.

  • kaymanaisle

    My ex-wife proudly put in a claim for neck ache and “whiplash” after someone drove into the back of her. Her doctor signed her off work with barely a nod and appeared, frankly, complicit in the whole thing. True, there was damage to the car (it was an old model and despite a valuation of 4000, it was written off following a garage estimate of 1500 for the work). My ex then took up the offer of a hire car and drove it around for 4 weeks while the insurers argued over the claim. After that, she used the insurance pay out to buy a (better) version of what she had and then took a holiday to Antigua with her boyfriend on the 4000 she got for whiplash, time off work, physio appointments etc. The whole thing was disgusting….she said it was the easiest money she had ever earned.

  • Rabbie Andrew

    …and at the bottom of the article on the web page is a sponsored link that reads, “6 things you MUST know if you want to make a compensation claim.” QED and such sweet irony!

  • tigerlily

    I reckon most of this article was made up.

    • Aberrant_Apostrophe

      Like most whiplash insurance claims, apparently.

  • Suleiman

    ‘The car insurance industry is a disgusting racket”.

    Wow !

    What about a more powerful racket, for example : British Employment Judges ?

  • Roger Hudson

    So-called comprehensive car insurance reduces people’s need to drive defensively , it should be banned by law.
    I have 3rd party, fire and theft with an extra legal cover. If someone knocks me there is no cosy insurance firm stitch up, i will sue for redress and repairs. If I cause a crash then i will get some legal help but expect to have to pay out, so i drive defensively (carefully and assume all other drivers are idiots). Car crashes, a German policeman once told me that the only true accident was a car being struck by lightning, everything else was caused by people, from bad drivers through bad mechanics to bad road engineers.

    • llamafarmer

      Hi, I’d double check your legal cover. It’s only really available for when an accident isn’t your fault. It would be useless if it was more than 50% likely to go against you.

  • Dogsnob

    Automotive NHS.

  • Dr Bock

    Just do what I do, tell them “That’s funny, your mentioning my accident, because I don’t drive.” Cue them hanging up. Or, what I’m seriously tempted to do the next time I receive a fishing phone call enquiring about an accident, jauntily say: “That’s odd, because, I mean, I did have an accident, but I’m fine, unlike those kids in the other car; can you believe the police think it was racially motivated!? And the parents, one’s a vegetable and the other’s been rendered infertile – an entire generation, wiped out…#sucks at teeth#…I mean, I sleep nights…”

    • Dodgy Geezer

      The most effective fight-back against cold callers involves keeping them on the phone as long as possible. They need quick throughput – they are paid on numbers called and numbers who sign up.

      If you keep someone on the phone for half an hour and don’t sign up, you have damaged their earnings…

      • Dr Bock

        To be fair I don’t think it’s the person making the calls’ fault, they’re probably mostly people aware of the fact that they’re doing a crap job, under the pressures you mention; though my sympathy on this count might be engaged by the fact that I was once fortunate enough to turn down an equivalent job working for what was, in effect, a boiler room for charity fundraising, or whatever cause was fashionable that week, with the campaigning organisations having outsourced this part of their activity to private hired guns, so to speak. Given that I have a very dark sense of humour I assume I wouldn’t have lasted long raising funds from the infirm for abused, black, Alzheimer’s cancer dolphins.

        • Dodgy Geezer

          …To be fair I don’t think it’s the person making the calls’ fault, they’re probably mostly people aware of the fact that they’re doing a crap job, under the pressures you mention…

          No one said anything about fault, the need to support their widowed mother, etc… They are doing that job because it provides them with the most money they can get it their circumstances. So long as it provides them with enough money to overcome their distaste (if any) for the job they will keep on doing it. Altering the amount of pay they get will alter the balance of advantages, and result in less people willing to do the job…

          • Dr Bock

            Or, you know, we could just hang up and get on with our lives.

      • Mary Ann

        While I find these calls very annoying, I also feel sorry for those who are doing them, what a dreadful job.

        • Alexsandr

          they could leave and do something useful.

  • And this is what Cameron and the government are calling new business growth. There is no growth just a load of ‘service’ companies creaming off others and us the end users who have to pay higher prices.

  • Paul B

    As most will discover Third Party Fire & Theft cover is more expensive than Comprehensive. I purchase Comprehensive therefore but only want 3rd party. Dealing with insurance companies is a pain in the neck and time consuming. Valuing my own time highly I have twice now paid for non-trivial £1000 level damage without informing the insurance company. Why would anybody claim, they claw it all back in following years with the loss of the No-Claim Bonus. As a consequence, with many years NCB, and with a high excess (I’m not going to claim!) I pay well under £200 p.a. on a car they say is worth £13000. I pretend the Comprehensive cover is TPF&T.

    • Mary Ann

      I believe that you have to declare the accident even if you don’t claim, if they find out you could find you are uninsured if you are responsible for an accident.

      • Paul B

        You are obliged only to report an accident involving injury to the police. You are not obliged to report an accident to your insurance company. Your comprehensive policy is at risk by so failing, but the third party insurance is always valid – that’s the point of it, why it is legally necessary, it is meant to be failsafe for the 3rd party.

  • Dominic Stockford

    I have been driven into twice. Both times were the other persons problem. Both times they admitted it, and had broken the rules of the road (technically committing a driving offence) and yet both times they weredecided to be ‘knock for knock’ – putting every party’s insurance up and giving me little in the way of joy.

    • Roger Hudson

      Your insurers were crooks, you should have said you were hurt, thus involving the police, then gone after the other driver at law.

  • Sean L

    They specifically tell you, your insurers, *never* to admit liability. Apparently they have their own methods of arriving at a settlement. But the ultimate source of the corruption that has infected the entire process is the profession that places the least value on truth, the legal profession. One of the most pernicious reforms of recent decades was the liberalisation of the legal profession in the 80s, whereby lawyers were for the first time enabled to proactively chase business. Hitherto there were severe restrictions on how they could market their services. For good reason as it turned out. This one reform, this ‘freedom’ for lawyers, has had repercussions in all areas of life, curtailing the most basic freedoms for the rest of us on the pretext of Health and Safety, shorthand for fear of litigation. Thus legal horror stories that were previously only heard of from across the Atlantic, that we used to mock Americans for, became a feature of life here also. The more recent boon to their profession is human rights law, and they’re now ruling the roost, the lawyers, as Charles Moore warns about on the other page.

  • Michael Loveridge

    The whiplash industry is now an institutionalised fraud. I’ve been in practice for well over 30 years, and until about 15 years ago personal injury claims were largely genuine. There was, of course, always an element of exaggeration, but in those days doctors received most of their income from being doctors, not from writing medical reports. This meant that they could – and often did – criticise the claimant in their report if they thought he was swinging the lead.

    Furthermore, when I was handling PI claims 20 years ago it was dealt with in a much more personal and individual way. There was none of the hideous crap that one now has to go through with the claims portal, and everything was far less process driven. The way that many claims were settled in those days was that the insurers had reps who would travel round visiting solicitors to discuss claims. They were highly knowledgeable and experienced men, who knew more about PI claims than most of the solicitors they were dealing with.

    The result of dealing with professional negotiators was that we often got claims settled quickly and with far less to-ing and fro-ing. And in sharp contrast to the rigmarole that costs involve these days the costs would very often be sorted out in the same meeting.

    But the net effect of this was that it was much harder for a fraudulent claimant to get away with it. There was also far less incentive for a solicitor to put forward a bent claim, as not only would it be likely to get thrown out but even if it succeeded the rewards were not particularly attractive. And, dare I say it, there was in general a much higher standard of professional ethics amongst PI practitioners then, so most solicitors would not have knowingly pursued a bent claim.

    This all changed with the introduction of Conditional Fee Agreements and particularly the concept of the success fee. This was new money, and it attracted a new industry known as `claims farmers’, such as Claims Direct and The Accident Group.

    Initially the difference wasn’t that great, as the claimant suffered a deduction from their damages to pay the success fee, as they do now. But the rot really set in when the law was changed so that the insurers had to pay both the success fee and the ATE premium (insurance against having to pay
    the defendant’s costs if you lost your claim). From that point on the claimant had nothing to lose, and CFA’s were literally a licence to print money.

    It was at that point that the fraudsters really got motoring. They realised that there were now vast amounts of money to be made, not just from the PI claim itself, but also from such add-ons as credit hire, credit repair etc. The number of claims rocketed, and bent solicitors jumped on the bandwagon to cash in. They realised that the chances of a fraudulent claim being discovered were minimal as the insurers didn’t have the stomach to fight. They were already getting hammered in extra costs because of the success fees and ATE premiums, and generally just gave in and paid up.

    It was around this time that PI claims became a marketable commodity. When I had a significant PI practice my work came via recommendation from existing clients and local insurance brokers. I never paid anyone for a referral, not because it was illegal (which it was in those halcyon days) but
    because it would never have occurred to either me or the referrer to do so. But because claims were now so profitable there was more than enough to let the middlemen take a cut. I refused on principle to pay referral fees, and as a result my PI practice gradually declined.

    The permitting of referral fees increased the level of corruption even more. The claims farmers didn’t give a damn whether the claims were genuine or not, and many of them started deliberately manufacturing claims.

    Likewise, many of the solicitors who had now moved into PI work and were buying the claims took the same attitude. Clams were no longer dealt with by professionals who knew and cared about their client. They were instead dealt with in sausage factories owned by solicitors but staffed by
    paralegals whose sole object was to maximise the fees in return for as little work as possible. The client wasn’t a client in the traditional sense, just a commodity to be processed and monetised.

    Things moved from bad to worse. Doctors suddenly realised that they could make far more money churning out medical reports by the dozen than by treating patients, and this now became the main source of income for many. Consequently, they were far more sensitive about upsetting their
    instructing solicitors, and had a major financial incentive to produce what the solicitor wanted. Many of them also knew the claims were phony, but like the solicitors they sold their souls to the devil and cashed the cheques to salve their consciences.

    Solicitors also cottoned on to the fact that there was serious money to be made in credit hire in particular – a scam of premier grand cru proportions. In their greed some of them started setting up their own credit hire companies, thereby getting two very lucrative bites at the same cherry.

    And so it was that what had once been a professional activity that was generally operated responsibly became terminally corrupted by the massive amounts of money sloshing around, while those of us who remembered the way that things had been looked on in despair.

    Eventually, of course, because of the rising premiums the public backlash kicked in and the government was forced to act. What’s left now is a significantly less profitable activity for all concerned, but sadly it’s still largely operated by the remnants of the firms that were set up to cash in, and who spend a large amount of their time trying to find various scams to increase their fees, such as pre-action disclosure applications.

    But the greatest irony of all this is that the insurers were not at all unhappy about the fact that a professional activity had morphed into a massive fraud. Of course they had to publicly express shock and horror, but what many people fail to realise is that insurers make most of their profits
    from the investment of premiums received, not the actual underwriting. Consequently, the result of all these new claims was that premiums were escalating, insurers had more money to invest and they were only too pleased. Furthermore, as they were all in the same boat they could all increase their premiums without fear that competition might hurt them.

    It’s also ironic that although they were publicly wringing their hands about these opportunistic ambulance chasers they were the very ones who were selling the claims to those ambulance chasers.

    This is the reason your `legal expenses insurance’ costs next to nothing. It’s merely a device to get you to ring your insurers as quickly as possible. They will quickly assess whether it’s a profitable claim or not, and if it is they will then sell it to one of their panel of ambulance chasers, typically for around £500 to £700, whilst giving the impression that they are doing you a favour by referring you to `specialist solicitors’, carefully chosen for their expertise.

    The entire industry is corrupt from head to toe. Realistically, the only way to sort it out is to abolish the right to compensation for minor injuries altogether, or, if this is considered too extreme, set up an independent body, financed by the insurance industry, that would assess and pay compensation without the involvement of the so called `professionals’.

    But it will never happen, because there are far too many influential people making a very nice living out of it.

    • PaD

      Thank you!
      what a parcel of rogues!

    • John Edwards

      Very interesting indeed… Had no idea!

  • rtj1211

    This is at least 11 years old – I had the same with a company fleet vehicle in the summer of 2004 (I remember as the shunt happened when I bailed out of going to watch a Euro 2004 game in a City Centre pub due to a typical Mancunian cloudburst near the Business School).

    I was second in line at some traffic lights and, at green, the car in front moved forward, then braked for some reason. I did likewise, stopping in front and was shunted from behind and into the car in front.

    18 months later, when I no longer worked for the company, the claims were still going on, being contested etc etc. Luckily I didn’t have to deal with it. I didn’t get the cold calling, but did get advised to claim for whiplash. I didn’t.

    It does, however, tell you that 80% of private sector ‘work’ is ‘work made up to ensure that every small thing is conflated into an elephantine pile of dung’.

    I hope it makes you start to question your unquestioning belief in the efficiency of the private sector, the fact that everything private is good and everything public is evil etc etc.

    I long ago concluded that mafia cartels existed both publicly and privately and that challenging either of them was a route to rack and ruin.

    There do need to be a few simple starters for ten:
    1. It is a criminal offence to cold call from a telephone anywhere in the world where the number is not revealed to the answerer.

    This would immediately allow a complaints website to receive thousands of numbers of criminals peddling a long list of non-existent problems (you have a problem with a PC (actually, we have Macs and we have no problem at all; you’ve just had a motor accident (no we haven’t you corrupt snivelling little Indian crook); you want new windows (no we damn well don’t and if we did we wouldn’t be calling you); you’ve just won 7 million Euros on the Lottery (no I haven’t, because I’ve never bought a lottery ticket in my life!)

    2. It is a criminal offence to run companies cold-calling people for non-existent complaints.

    This would prevent convicted criminals running companies in future as they would become ‘unfit to be a Director’.

    3. It is a lifetime ban from working in management consultancy if you ever propose to a client that they set up call centre operations to chase fictitious claims – this would hopefully put McKinsey et al out of business if they ever cause grief to millions of people having to answer 50 calls a month from these global pests.

    4. It is a 10 year slave labour offence for any politician, journalist, media tycoon or banker to earn a single penny from any company running ambulance chasing cold-call-centres harassing the general public.

    Of course, this assumes that the rich and powerful must be treated as habitual criminals.

    Well that would be facing reality for the first time in a long while, wouldn’t it??!!

    • Gahd McAfi

      Cold callers still pollute the airwaves with their dire business case of buying data off insurance companies and then sueing them in return to ‘boost’ business?

    • Dodgy Geezer

      …1. It is a criminal offence to cold call from a telephone anywhere in the world where the number is not revealed to the answerer.

      Alas, there is no way to ensure that the number provided IS the actual number that’s being called from. And if it is, there’s rarely any way to find out who actually did the calling…

      • Alexsandr

        I bought withheld number blocking from my ISP so I didnt get cold calls. but it only blocks UK blocked numbers. They seeming can do nothing to block foreign stuff? Why can we, as a country, block any incoming calls that dont have a callers number. The country does not want them.

  • mikewaller

    Why does not Delingpole stick to this kind of stuff plus TV reviews rather than his usual nonsense over global warming, the NHS or snitching on Cameron? The latter three have far more to do with serving his own ego needs than with having something useful to say. As a follow-up to this piece, he might explore what recently happened when a regulatory body said it was considering investigating the financial services industry. First, the relevant shares dropped like a stone – surely gold standard evidence that the public were being ripped off big time – and then most of the press when into a feeding frenzy directed at the regulatory body. Surely gold-standard evidence that the press barons are more interested in protecting their wealthy friends than in protecting us from exploitation.There you are James, do something useful!

  • capt niven

    So, Delingpole, you were leasing the vehicle. To avoid tax (that’s the only reason the leasing industry exists). You admit that, were it not for that fact, none of this would have happened. So, we can correctly deduce that your greedy tax avoidance has been complicit in the continuation of this corruption. Stop whinging.

    • Simplisticus

      (that’s the only reason the leasing industry exists).

      I don’t know where you get that ‘fact’ from. Leasing is just another method of hire purchase and has no tax benefits. Anyway what has the method of car purchase got to do with insurance?

      • Alexsandr

        most new cars are leased no. Saves you having to find a big lump sum up front to buy on HP. And you can have a deal that includes all the costs in 1 monthly fee.

    • Chagrin

      Are you ill?

  • Precambrian

    Yup. Its a con. A scam. A cartel. Demanded by law but then about as regulated as the Sudan.

    I reckon Hitchens is on to the right idea and not driving.

  • OnTheWayOut

    What’s interesting is that car insurance companies, collectively, haven’t made a profit since the mid-1990s. Yes, this is true – I’ve seen this a couple of times at industry conferences.

    Interesting that even the right-wing press is so uninterested in how businesses work that no-one in the press has picked it up.

  • natural rights

    New Zealand doesn’t require automobile insurance. Therefore, since there is no captive market, insurance is cheap, half the motorists choose not to have any, and if there is an accident, people usually have a very relaxed and cooperative attitude.

    • Bris Vegas

      There are few cars in NZ worth insuring.

  • MickC

    The start of this was the Law Society allowing solicitors to pay referral fees, contrary to the members wishes, but in accord with the wishes of the large firms, and the connivance of New Labour.
    The practise of law was to be a business like any other, rather than a profession, as demanded by the Clementi Report. Clementi, of course, was a banker and therefore disapproving of professional duties and responsibilities, profit being the only parameter of consequence.
    The Clementi approach was, of course, disastrous in the financial services “industry”, and has been in the legal world.

    • Goinlike Billio

      Thanks for your insight on this.

  • Rush_is_Right

    It sounds to me as if the insurance companies are, like you, victims of the grievance culture. I’m sure they don’t want to pay out their hard-earned to these fraudsters but they have clearly learned the hard way that the system is weighted against them. You are misdirecting your wrath. Blame the “You and Yours” mind-set.