New design and language for House, Contents and Motor Vehicle Policies (effective on renewal from 28 March 2022)

MAS Plain Language House Insurance Policy Document CoverDuring 2021, in an effort to further improve your MAS Member experience, we have updated our house, contents, and motor vehicle policy documents making them easier to read, understand, and navigate.

The changes involve rewriting the documents in line with plain language principles. Where possible complex legal or insurance terms have been explained more simply, and unnecessary legal and insurance jargon has been removed.

The documents have also been redesigned to incorporate digital navigation tools in order to help you find policy information more easily.

While these changes are intended purely to improve the design and readability of the documents and not affect the terms and conditions of the policy, there are a couple of changes you should be aware of that we have made to better reflect the way the policies are managed in practice. These changes are explained below.

House policy document

We have made the following changes to the house policy in relation to natural disaster cover:

1. Changed the name of the “Natural Disaster Cover” benefit to “Natural Disaster Damage” and moved it to Section 1: loss to your property, Automatic additional benefits, page 27. As part of this change we have updated the benefit explanation to better reflect the way the benefit works under the policy and with EQC.

2. Clarified that the policy does not cover loss arising from a natural disaster other than the cover provided in the automatic additional benefits section of the policy for natural disaster damage.

MAS House policy document Loss to your Property section

3. Updated the “one excess – one event” section of the policy, on page 14, to clarify that more than one excess may apply if the claim involves EQC cover (as separate EQC excesses may apply).

MAS House policy document How your policy works section

You can view the new House policy wording here.

Motor Vehicle policy document

We have updated our Accidental Death benefit to better reflect how the benefit is intended to operate. This change means that the cover under this benefit now only applies when a sudden accidental event has occurred while the insured is ‘in or driving the vehicle’.  You can find the new wording on page 21 of the Motor Vehicle policy document.

MAS Motor Vehicle policy document Loss to Your Property section

What do you need to do?

The new documents are provided to you on renewal. You will receive an email notifying you that your insurance is to be renewed and in this letter, there will be a link to your new policy document.

Until your policy comes up for renewal, you should continue to consult your existing policy documents.

We recommend you review your policies annually to ensure you have suitable cover and our support team can help with any questions you may have about your policy, including options to reduce your premiums. If you have any questions and would like to talk to a team member please call us on 0800 800 627.

The changes will be introduced to new policies and renewing policies from 28 March 2022 onwards and will apply to your policy when it comes up for its annual renewal.

If you would like to read the previous policy wordings, you can do so on our Insurance Resources page.

Corrections to multi-product and Goldshield discounts

We are making some corrections to the way we apply discounts for Members who hold more than one MAS general insurance policy.

Some Members have been receiving discounts for which they weren’t eligible, while other Members may have missed out on discounts they should have received in previous years. These corrections will come into effect when policies come up for their annual renewal.

If you are owed a discount, we will apply it to your policy and be in touch to confirm the refund you will be receiving for previous overpayments.

If you have been receiving a discount for which you weren’t eligible, we won’t ask for any repayment but we will remove the discount from the policy and adjust your next year’s premiums accordingly.

These corrections apply to the following discounts:

  • Members are eligible for a multi-product discount if they hold two different MAS policies out of house, contents, or private motor vehicle insurance.
  • Members are eligible for a Goldshield discount if they hold house, contents and motor vehicle insurance with MAS.

If you’re a personal Member and your policies are split between yourself and your partner, or your family trust, we’ll extend any eligible discount across the shared policies.

Changes to Motor Vehicle Premiums (effective from 8 September 2021)

We are making some changes to the premiums we charge for our motor vehicle policies. These changes will be introduced from 8 September, and will take effect when policies come up for their annual renewal.

  1. The 7.2% base premium discount offered due to COVID-19 lockdowns has expired. This was introduced in September 2020, to recognise the savings we had made on claims during the nationwide COVID lockdown due to cars being kept off the roads. You can read our original announcement about this discount here.
  2. As a mutual, we endeavour to keep premiums as low as possible, and motor vehicle premiums have not been changed for five years. We now need to reassess premiums to take account of changes in the motor vehicle industry and the rising costs of car parts due to COVID disruptions globally, along with the increasing sophistication of car parts generally.

These changes won’t affect all our policyholders in the same way but will instead take account of factors such as the location where the insured vehicle is usually parked and driven; the number of drivers named on the policy; and the make of the insured vehicle.

In general, these changes will result in premium increases for most of our policyholders, although the increases will be relatively modest. Around 70% of our policyholders will receive an increase of less than $100.

When considering your motor vehicle policy options, it is important to remember the benefits covered by your MAS premiums. These include:

  • Free cover for windscreen damage if you have comprehensive motor vehicle insurance
  • Automatic cover for trailers valued up to $2,000
  • No driver age excess on third party damage-only claims
  • Accidental death cover up to $20,000

There are various ways to reduce your motor vehicle premiums, such as setting a higher voluntary excess for higher value vehicles, naming drivers on your policy, or restricting drivers of the vehicle to over-25-year-olds only.

We recommend you review your policies annually to ensure you have suitable cover for your vehicle, and our support team can help with any questions you may about your policy, including options to reduce your premiums.

You can make changes to your policy online using our Make a Change to a Motor Vehicle Policy form.

Boat Policy Premiums to Change (effective from 1 August 2021)

We are changing the way we calculate premiums for some boat insurance policyholders. 

Currently, policyholders are receiving a discount on their premiums due to their age. However, from renewals following 1st August 2021 we will be removing this discount. 

We have previously removed similar discounts from other general insurance policies, and now this change will bring our boat insurance in line with other MAS products. 

We will begin removing these discounts from 1 August 2021, and the discount will be removed as individual policies come up for annual renewal.

New exclusions added to General Insurance policies (effective from 1 July 2021)

You can read the new policy wordings here:

MAS is introducing some changes to the wordings for our general insurance products – the group of insurance that covers things like house, car, and contents insurance, as well as business risk insurance.

Just as our Members buy insurance from MAS, MAS buys its own insurance from reinsurers.

Our reinsurers have changed their policy wordings for general insurance policies to more clearly exclude loss or damage connected with pandemics, cyber-attacks, and legal liability associated with asbestos.

We understand that because reinsurers are introducing these changes across the reinsurance market, it will impact other insurers as well as MAS.  

The purpose of the changes is to make it clearer what is intended to be covered, and what is not covered, rather than to materially change the cover currently provided.

As a result, we expect it’s highly unlikely that MAS policyholders will be affected by these changes.

Our policies already excluded certain types of loss and damage relating to pandemics, cyber-attacks, and asbestos-related issues. We could not identify practical examples of Members who would be affected by the change.

The changes will be introduced to new policies and renewing policies from 1 July 2021 onwards, and will apply to your policy when it comes up for its annual renewal.

If you would like to read the previous policy wordings, you can do so on our Insurance Resources page.

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