Part of making insurance easier is getting you the help you need, when you need it. Below is our FAQ section. If you have a question that can't be answered below, please contact us using the form to the right.

No, not all insurance policies are created equal.

Insurance policies can be very complex, and the cheapest policy will not always meet all of your needs. Sometimes, what is left out of a policy is as important as what is included, and the cheapest option may exclude or omit a risk that you can't afford to carry yourself. Interpreting the terms of the policy is part of your broker's role and you should listen to their advice as you would a professional such as a doctor or a lawyer. Although policy cost will always be a factor, ensuring you have the right cover in place when it comes the time to make a claim is vital and our top priority

Absolutely. A change of circumstances may mean the insurance you have in place is no longer current, inadequate or excluded from cover. It may be that your circumstances change in a way that means your risk is reduced and you're paying too much, or that your risk is increased and you're exposed to uninsured losses. Either way, advising your broker of your changes will allow them to review your insurances and ensure your policies remain relevant. It's advisable to review your insurance regularly - at the very least annually - because changes may have taken place that alter your risk profile, and the policies available to cover your risks may also have changed.

Many insurers have agreements with preferred repairers. You can contact the preferred repairer directly and they will handle your windscreen repairs and related insurance claim with a minimum of paperwork.

For more information on windscreen claims, see the Motor Vehicle Claims page

An insurance broker represents the consumer has a duty of care to you and must act in your best interests, they will attempt to source the most appropriate policy on your behalf at a competitive premium.

An agent represents the insurance company and therefore has no responsibility to ensure that you are getting the most appropriate policy available, only to ensure that you are getting the most appropriate policy from the company's range.

In some circumstances a broker may act as an agent for the insurer and not as your agent. This is often the case with schemes where special rates or improved policy wordings been negotiated with a particular insurer. In these cases there is likely to be benefits to the insured that wouldn't be available by negotiating with individual insurers. In these circumstances the broker will clearly advise that they are acting as an agent for the insurer and not as your agent.

When you consider the protection that the insurance policies provide to your business and financial well being, insurance really isn’t expensive at all. Add to that the fact that premiums are generally tax deductible for businesses. People just don’t like paying for something they are not likely to use.

However if you do need to claim, insurance cover can become your best friend, particularly if it has been properly arranged by a professional insurance broker - whom will risk profile exactly what cover you need so that you do not have any surprises if you come to claim something that is not covered.

Commercial insurance in Australia, particularly in NSW and Victoria is the most highly taxed in the world. Clients may find they're paying a tax rate over 100% of the actual insurance company premiums. An example below might leave some clients shocked at these hidden taxes, based on a commercial property insurance policy in country Victoria:

Insurance Premium = $500

+ Terrorism Levy 4% = $20

= $520

+ Fire Brigade Levy 63% of the cumulative total = $327.60 (yes that is a levy on a levy)

= $847.60

+ GST 10% of the cumulative total = $84.76 (yes that is now a tax on a levy on a levy)

= $932.36

+ Stamp Duty 10% of the cumulative total = $93.24 (yes that is now a tax on a tax on a levy on levy)

Final amount the policy holder pays?


In essence for every $1 that the insurance company charges the client, they pay $1.03 in taxes bringing the cost up to $2.03 for $1 worth of cover.

This is one of many reasons insurance is expensive, but regardless of expensive the real question is, is the risk greater than the cost?

How many times have I heard that in the last 15 years in the industry: "My brand new brick and steel building which cost $500,000 to build would never burn down. We’ll just insure it for $250,000 to save on insurance premiums".

Tragically a recent ASIC study confirmed that up to 80% of all insurance consumers in Australia were under-insured by 10% or more. This trend can also occur over time, with consumers capping their increases to sums insured to the "indexed" increases that the insurers automatically include at each renewal – usually tagged at low single digit inflation rates. Between 2000 and 2005 CPI increased by 17% BUT building costs rose by 33%.

What our clients need to understand is that insurers have "under-insurance" clauses in most commercial property and business interruption, and even some domestic property insurance policies. These policies state that if the client is under-insured, then that client becomes a "co-insurer" of the property. In the example above where the client has insured a $500,000 building for $250,000 the insurers policy deems that client to have taken 50% of the risk, so all claims are only paid out by the insurer at 50% of the loss. So the client cannot falsely believe that ALL CLAIMS up to $250,000 will be paid in full. A smaller loss for example such as malicious damage via an attempted burglary, which causes $50,000 damage would see the insurer pay $25,000 and the client left to foot the other $25,000 because they were deemed to be "co-insured" for the 50%. In this case the fact that they had a brick and steel building that would never burn down is very cold comfort when finding that other $25,000 from their own pocket.

For more information on under-insurance see our news article on under-insurance.

The role of an insurance broker is to help both individuals and businesses in dealing with the complexities of insurance. A good insurance broker, like Elliott Insurance Brokers, will spend time with you to find out what risks are associated with your particular circumstances and then advise and arrange insurances to protect your valuable property, time, business or life. A quality broker is able to handle all matters concerning your insurances from amendments to claims and renewals and they are a point of contact for advice at any stage.

Insurance brokers are required to be extensively trained and qualified and they are monitored by ASIC (the Australian Securities and Investments Commission) to ensure they comply with all regulations. Strict penalties apply to brokers who use dishonest or deceptive practices.

An insurance broker works as your representative with your interests in mind at all times, not as a agent of an insurance company. Many customers like to have an expert in their corner to advise them when playing the ever-changing insurance game. At Elliott Insurance Brokers, we're on the side of our clients and look out for what's best for them.

Insurance brokers, like Elliott Insurance Brokers, are professional advisers who work on behalf of their clients - not insurance companies. The job involves analysing 'risks' to help their clients decide the best way to insure they're lives and livelihoods. Every good insurance broker’s primary task should be assisting clients to manage their risks by arranging and putting in place the right insurance policies. Good brokers are also able to explain the complexities of policy wordings to all their clients.

Brokers are not insurance agents. In Australia, brokerage businesses are required to be a licensed financial services provider and are governed by the industry regulator, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission. An experienced insurance broker brings a level of technical expertise, which can be particularly handy in dissecting the intricate policy wording or in the event of claim.

Insurance broking is a growing industry, with more and more people seeing the need for specialised advice and personal service that experienced brokers provide. People use the services of insurance brokers to save them time and money. In the same way that individuals and companies utilise the services of solicitors and accountants in relation to specialist areas, insurance brokers provide their clients with expert advice in relation to the risks associated with their lifestyles, the property they own and the businesses they operate.

Insurance is an agreement between two parties promising compensation if a condition is met. It is in both parties interest that the condition is not met.

Eg. You and an insurer enter into an agreement where if your car is damaged they will compensate you.

Insurance companies work by charging a regular "premium", which may be monthly or annual or, if the risk is temporary, a one off. In the event of a claim, there is usually an additional fee, called an "excess".

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