Insurer offers helping hand to ease post-quake stress

by Maya Breen25 Nov 2016
Asteron Life has offered relief to its customers experiencing financial hardship following the recent earthquakes that hit New Zealand. 

The insurer has offered to pay customer premiums for three months, up to $2,000 per month, subject to certain criteria.

Speaking to NZ Adviser, Suncorp executive manager life & health distribution, Mark Frecklington said, “Our thoughts are with those affected by the earthquakes and ongoing aftershocks. 

“We know that it must be very difficult for those living in affected areas and we want to offer some practical help to clients who are caught up in this situation.

“For Asteron Life customers in affected areas who are experiencing financial difficulties because of the quake, we’d like to help.”

Frecklington said customers affected by the quakes can contact their adviser about applying for premium relief. 

“They may be eligible if the quake as affected their income – for example, if they’ve been unable to work and their wages have reduced, or small business owners whose business has stopped. 

“Advisers can work with their customers through the application process. We’ll assess applications on a case by case basis to see how we can progress them as swiftly as possible.

“For customers who have general insurance policies with Suncorp’s Vero brand, we’ve set up an office at the Craypot Café and Bar in Kaikoura, where people can talk to a claims manager about any insurance questions they might have.” 

The Wellington office based at the Asteron Centre is temporarily closed, where about 180 staff work under the Vero, Asteron Life, and AA Life brands.  

“As a precautionary measure we have notified our Wellington people that the Asteron Centre is closed until further notice, and they should not come to work,” a Suncorp spokesperson said. 

“The building will remain closed while we wait for further safety checks to be carried out. 

“We have robust business continuity planning processes in place to deal with such major events, so that we can continue to provide a service to our customers, and are providing support to our people through this unsettling time.” 

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