Donegal Deputy Pearse Doherty has hit out at the Irish insurance industry for waging a ‘public disinformation’ campaign following a new report on motor insurance.
The Central Bank’s first-ever report on private motor insurance reveals that the average price paid for motor insurance shot up by 62% between 2013 and 2018.
The average premium was €706 last year, jumping up from €498 in 2009.
While the number of claims is down by 40%, the cost per claim is up 64%.
The report has been described as a shocking indictment of the insurance industry by Sinn Féin’s Pearse Doherty, who criticised the Government for “peddling the misinformation campaign” of the insurance industry.
Teachta Doherty said the report should serve as a wake up call.
“Today we have the facts in black and white.
“Since 2009, the cost of claims per insurance policy has gone down by over 2%. At the same time the average motor insurance premium has gone up by a staggering 42%.”
The report also shows that the average legal costs for motor insurance injury claims settled through litigation between 2015 and 2018 were €23,031. More than half (53%) of claims between 2015 and 2018 were settled directly between the insurer and the claimant. 16% were settled through the Personal Injury Assessment Board.
On these figures, Doherty said: “The ‘compo-culture’ line trotted by the industry was a convenient story to cover its own price-gouging activities. That line does not stand up to scrutiny.”
Doherty today called on the government to hold the insurance industry to account:
“The National Claims Information Database confirms what we in Sinn Féin have been saying for some time.
“The Irish insurance industry is highly profitable and highly dishonest. They have waged a public disinformation campaign that flies in the face of the facts. Cost of claims to the industry has gone down while the premiums paid by consumers has sky-rocketed, increasing every year.
“We know that insurance companies are using practices such as dual pricing to overcharge existing customers.
“I am calling on the Government and Fianna Fáil to stop defending the industry and repeating their spin.
“Sinn Féin has repeatedly held the industry to account for misinforming the public and ripping off their consumer. Only Sinn Féin can be trusted to take them on and end the insurance rip-off.”