Fianna Fáil Senator Brian Ó Domhnaill is calling on the Finance Minister to compensate Setanta Insurance customers following the liquidation of the company.
Around 75,000 customers in Ireland have been affected by the winding down of the firm, which has its headquarters in Malta.
The company sent cancellation notices to all customers at the beginning of the month, which means that all policies will be null and void by the end of this week.
Senator Ó Domhnaill commented: “Thousands of Irish insurance customers – many here in Donegal – have been left high and dry following the collapse of this company. Many of them bought their policy in good faith and paid for their cover up front.
“They’re now left out of pocket and without insurance, and will have to pay again to get their van or commercial vehicle covered. This will place a massive financial burden on these customers, who find themselves having to pay twice for insurance, at a time when money is already extremely scarce.
“Minister Noonan’s reaction to the situation has been far from satisfactory. He has advised policy holders to arrange alternative cover without delay. He doesn’t seem to realise that it will be extremely difficult for many people to find the money to pay for a second policy.
“His comments are uncaring and cavalier and demonstrate the fact that this Government is completely out of touch with the realities of people’s lives. Customers should not be asked to pay twice for an insurance policy for the same vehicle for the same year because of regulation failures in the insurance market.
“People are already paying for lax regulation in the insurance sector through the 2% levy imposed on all home and motor policies in 2012 following the collapse of Quinn Insurance. Despite this costly measure, the Government failed to do anything to address these shortcomings and now Setanta Insurance customers are paying the price again”, added Senator Ó Domhnaill
“The Government should provide free alternative insurance cover to these policyholders or ensure that all Setanta customers are fully insured until their renewal date”.