Thieves stole jewelry and Louis Vuitton bags from Sophie's house: why doesn't insurance cover it?

When you rent or buy a home, you need to take out insurance to cover you in case something goes wrong. If you already had insurance for your old home, do not forget to notify your insurer of your change of residence so that the transfer of insurance for your contents is done correctly because it is not always automatic and you could get bad surprises.

Six years ago, Sophie, a 45-year-old hairdresser, bought a house in Dilbeek, on the outskirts of Brussels. Therefore, she had to establish an insurance contract that covered fires, floods, theft, etc. As is usually the case, she did this through the bank from which she had obtained the mortgage loan.

“The broker BNP Paribas Fortis came to my house. He offered me insurance from AG Insurance against fire and theft. It costs 1,300 euros a year. I asked him why it was so expensive and the broker told me that the insurance covered the entire contents of the house. home”, he explains to us. Sophie is surprised by this high price but she tells herself that if it is to have good insurance, it is worth it. But she was going to pay too much. And for nothing. Explanations.

“They took all my jewelry, my designer shoes, my Louis Vuitton bags and my designer underwear.”

In mid-January, the day after returning from vacation, the hairdresser realized that she had been the victim of a robbery.“They took all my jewelry, my designer shoes, my Louis Vuitton bags and my designer underwear. It was right after the holidays and almost all the gifts I had received were stolen.”, Sophie tells us, stating that it is worth 10,000 euros in total. She immediately calls AG Insurance to find out what steps to take to get reimbursed. And then it's a cold shower. The person on the phone explains that she is not covered against theft as far as the contents are concerned. Misunderstood, Sophie replies that she pays €1,300 for money. per year for her insurance. Her interlocutor responds that she will study her file and contact her again. What she does a few days later.

Coding error and non-transfer of insurance.

Sophie quickly gets a reassuring explanation about the high price of her insurance. There was a coding error when establishing her insurance contract. This mistake transformed her new house into a five-apartment complex and therefore made her coverage much more expensive. The insurance guarantees Sophie that she will be reimbursed for the sums received improperly during all these years.

But in the case of theft, the result is not so positive. The house that was robbed was not the one that was insured due to its contents, they told AG. “I don't understand, am I getting my insurance letters at the right address and it's not this house that is insured?” —Sophie asks. We reached out to AG Insurance spokesperson Sven Adams for clarification. This is a procedural error on the client's part, she argues.“When he bought the house, he had to fix it up first and didn't move in immediately. That's why the insurance didn't include the contents because there was still nothing in the house where she lived. However, when she finally moved into the new house, she was well insured, she did not tell her insurer, so she was unable to transfer her contents insurance.explains the AG Seguros spokesperson.

After this disappointment, Sophie attempted to win her case directly with BNP Paribas Fortis bank and its claims office. She asks him for details of everything stolen. Dilbeek's hairdresser spent two weeks collecting all the invoices and asking for new ones when she couldn't find them. She even finds photographs in which the stolen objects appear. “It took me forever.”said the forty-year-old man. But the bank invokes the same procedural argument as the insurance company. “The bank told me that they would not reimburse me for the stolen items. They even told me You just had to read your insurance documents correctly.“. But Sophie doesn't give up. She hired a lawyer and decided to file a complaint against BNP Paribas.

Many people are not properly insured

The hairdresser's case is not an isolated case. Many people think they are adequately insured against theft or damage caused by fire or flood, when they are not. Pour Wouter Robijns, porte-parole d'Assuralia, l'Union professionnelles des entreprises d'assurances, il est important que, lorsqu'une assurance est conclue, l'organisme assureur et le preneur d'assurance s'entendent sur l'étendue of the same. “There is construction insurance, contents insurance, tenant liability to the landlord, neighbor liability insurance, etc.”he explains.

Two sites to help you find the insurance you need

To help citizens, a site dedicated to money issues, wikifinIt was created at the end of January 2013 by the FSMA, the Financial Services and Markets Authority. “I encourage anyone who wants to take out insurance to visit this website to find out more about what type of insurance you can take out, what insurance best suits your needs, etc.”, recommends BNP Paribas Fortis spokesperson. It is also clearly stated that when home insurance is purchased, theft is not necessarily covered. Certain expenses related to a disaster are also additionally covered, for example if you have to relocate in the event of a fire.

Assuralia has also created a website, abcassurance, which provides extensive advice on choosing insurance and offers checklists of the different reflexes to adopt in certain everyday situations, such as during a traffic accident, a flood or theft.

“Above all, the person who wants to take out insurance should not hesitate to ask questions to their insurer. “It is better to ask the same question three times than to be left in the dark.”concludes the AG Insurance spokesperson.

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