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Rural Customer Gains Justice After Settlement on Botched Roof Job

Rural Customer Gains Justice After Settlement on Botched Roof Job

In an exemplary case of customer advocacy, a financial broker's persistence has facilitated a significant compensation for a rural policyholder following subpar roof repairs.
Following a natural calamity in 2018, the client submitted a claim to have their hail-damaged roof fixed, a service managed by the insurer HDI Global Specialty.
Unfortunately, the attempted repairs left much to be desired, with a misuse of roofing materials raising concerns over both appearance and functionality.

Negotiations regarding adequate compensation seemed to linger indefinitely, with a spectrum of offers being tabled before the Australian Financial Complaints Authority stepped in to arbitrate. Initially, the roofing repairer admitted to the substandard workmanship and proposed a settlement of $9,345. However, the client's broker argued for a more substantial amount, $59,261, supported by an external carpenter's assessment. The suboptimal materials not only caused visible warping but were predicted to considerably shorten the roof's lifespan.

Despite the repairer's willingness to redo the roof, the homeowner was understandably reluctant to re-engage the same firm, resulting in further delays in remediation. Failure to agree on an actionable solution precipitated extended frustration for the homeowner.

The dispute's resolution came as the complaints authority stepped in, suggesting cash compensation as the most feasible route to rectify the missteps encountered over the protracted four-year period. The authority's involvement culminated in HDI being directed to pay $40,000 in damages, along with an additional $2,000 for non-financial losses. This sum aimed to account for the exceptional stress and inconvenience attributable to the poorly executed roof repairs.

The ruling by the complaints body was welcomed as a fair conclusivity, mandating the insurer's adherence to the policy agreement and offering the affected homeowner a much-needed sense of finality to a lingering issue.

Published:Friday, 1st Mar 2024
Source: Paige Estritori

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