Beware of cheap imitations!

By Jeremy Clayton

Sorry if I have been a bit quiet over the last few months…what with all the fun and laughter over the festive period plus the Company here, working me like a dog…I just haven’t had time to put pen to paper…or fingers to laptop as is the correct saying now!!

Seriously, things are really exciting at JWS, with the Group expanding at a great rate of knots, the desire to take up our exclusive and comprehensive insurance packages, has never been so popular. Thank you to all our clients for their support.

On the subject of our exclusive products, I would like to ‘dedicate’ this article to my industry and those in it that think, by copying our policies, this will enable them to compete with JWS in the markets we specialize in. It is not enough to simply ‘copy’ the policy, it is about understanding what the wording means, what is covered and how to interpret the policy. When we launch a new product, we investigate the market, understand the needs and take our time in drafting the wording, before checking and re-checking…and only then we launch it. It is not simply a matter of ‘copy and paste’!

So, several years ago, someone decided to plagiarise one of our policy wordings and their biggest mistake was to copy two typographical errors in the policy (yes even JWS can make errors!). The courts decided this was pretty much evidence enough and the injunction still stands.

Lately, another Insurer, whose name and policy shall remain nameless, fundamentally copied around 80% of our very popular and successful Sleep Easy policy. The difference, however, is that they have removed some of the most important extensions of cover, which forms the basis of the policy. So, where our policy provides ‘new for old’ cover, theirs does not; if you have a swimming pool, tanks, generators, radio and satellite equipment…they are not covered under the definition of buildings and they are not providing you with Accidental Damage cover. This means when you knock over your Ming vase, or little Johnny or Olivia forget that they are not allowed to play football in the house and smash the ball through the TV…this isn’t covered either! Perhaps that is why they can afford to reduce their standard rates by 25%, hence the heading to this article!

Interestingly, what they have done, is added some very useful (or not so useful) extensions. So, if you are a golfer, you can pay an extra KES 1,000 to get the cover that is already included under the other sections, or if your freezer breaks down, you can claim KES 10,000, but only if you can provide invoices for everything that defrosted! What is also quite shocking, is this Insurer has issued a supporting ‘marketing brochure’ that summarises everything that is covered, but the information it holds is actually incorrect. What is said in the brochure is not necessarily in the policy and as the policy is the legal document, one must go by that.

So, as always at JWS, we will provide you with a full comparison between our policies and those of the market. It is quite eye opening what one sees, but not half as eye opening as when you are sitting there waiting for a claims payment…and it ain’t coming!

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