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Managing high net worth claims

At a glance

  • High net worth clients often have bespoke insurance needs that require a very different claims approach
  • Not only are losses incurred often costly and complex, these clients typically have different priorities following a loss
  • From speed of response, to freedom of choice, and dedicated claims handling, we look at Zurich Private Clients’ unique approach to high net worth insurance claims

High net worth (HNW) clients often have very different insurance needs than other policyholders, and typically require a different claims approach.

From fine art and jewellery collections, to luxury cars and bespoke travel packages, HNW clients typically insure significant assets, many of which come with complex insurance requirements. These are usually best served through specific high net worth insurance products, offering generous policy limits and a highly personalised service.

The unique requirements of HNW clients also requires very different support during the claims process.

The nature of high net worth claims

The losses incurred by HNW policy holders are typically of higher value. Chris Aherne, Claims Manager, Zurich Private Clients, explains: “At Zurich Private Clients we deal with a variety of property, motor and travel claims, and the losses involved differ considerably from claim to claim.

“In the case of property, we deal with everything from small losses such as damage to laptops and iPads, to very expensive watches, right through to aggravated burglaries and catastrophic house fires which can cost hundreds of thousands of pounds.

“On the travel side, we also see a range of interesting and complex losses, ranging from lost passports, to accidents, illnesses and family emergencies abroad. The challenge for many high net worth clients is that claims often involve bespoke, curated holidays, with itineraries that can include everything from Mediterranean cruises to safari trips. The nature of these holidays means that losses can be much more challenging to handle than the average claim.”

As well as the often higher sums involved with high net worth claims, HNW policy holders typically have different priorities following a loss, and may be more concerned with quickly securing a like-for-like replacement than recouping money. This is particularly true for losses involving specialist, hard to source items.

Chris explains: “We’ve seen cases where a customer has lost a rare, high-value watch, for example, which not only carries sentimental value, but has a long waiting list for a replacement.

“For many high net worth individuals in this situation, money is not the important thing – it is the piece itself and being able to secure a like-for-like replacement as quickly as possible.”

Meeting the challenge with Zurich Private Clients

The challenges posed by high net worth losses require claims to be handled in a different way. Offering a portfolio of premium, tailored insurance products, Zurich Private Clients provides an above-and-beyond claims process that offers HNW clients rapid response times, freedom and choice, and dedicated, hands-on claims handling relationships.

Chris explains: “We work closely with our broker partners and customers to ensure that we meet the customer’s needs and all parties are satisfied with the outlined approach.

“It’s all about having an open dialogue throughout the claims process and bringing each party along the journey.”

Speed of response

Supported by a 24/7, 365 days-a-year claims support service, Zurich Private Clients aims to get clients back to a pre-loss position as quickly as possible.

Chris explains: “In a recent case, one of our customers was involved in a road traffic accident in their high value car. The customer called us immediately on our single dedicated number, and through our network of claims providers we were able to collect the vehicle and provide a like-for-like hire replacement the very same evening. The following morning, the car was inspected and declared a write-off, at which point we paid out the claim. The whole process took less than 24 hours.”

Freedom of choice

Zurich Private Clients also offers freedom of choice, both in terms of contractors, and in how the claim is paid out. Chris says: “We do not dictate who restore a client’s property or repair their vehicles. Clients are free to use a Zurich specialist supplier, or to appoint their own trusted contractors. In the latter case, we will simply liaise with the chosen contractor directly to agree the scope, costs and authorise any repairs.

“Equally, if the client prefers cash, we can price the loss and pay out.”

Dedicated claims handling relationships

The speed of response and freedom offered by Zurich Private Clients is enabled through dedicated claims handler relationships. As Chris explains: “In the case of a motor claim for example, the handler that takes the first call will see the case all the way through to conclusion.

“This includes arranging vehicle and customer recovery, hiring a car, managing repairs and recovering money if the client wasn’t to blame. Any phone call, email exchange, update or payment will all be processed by the same handler.”

The benefit of this approach is reflected in the fact that Zurich Private Clients have a Net Promoter Score of 80% that rates Zurich Private Clients as ‘world class’ for customer satisfaction which the team is very proud of.

Chris concludes: “Zurich Private Clients is all about asking ‘what does the customer want?’ and how can we help them?”

“High net worth claims present different and at times unique challenges which require us to approach claims in a different way. That’s why ZPC provide a specialised service to our broker partners and customers.”

For more information on the issues discussed in this article, please get in touch with your local Zurich contact.

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