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14,000 Irish motorists at risk after collapse of Gibraltar-based insurer

The news comes on the same day that a government report was published to try and protect motor insurance customers.

Image: Wikimedia

THOUSANDS OF IRISH motorists are at risk after the collapse of an insurer based in Gibraltar.

The Central Bank said in a statement that it was notified today that Enterprise Insurance Company is to be wound up. There is now uncertainty as to whether the company, which has 14,000 customers in Ireland, will be able to meet outstanding claims.

The firm was selling motor insurance in several European countries including Ireland “on a freedom of services basis”.

The Central Bank said that its Enterprise’s financial position is not supervised by the Central Bank of Ireland “and the Central Bank has no role in that regard”.

It said that the “prudential supervision” of the company is being handled by the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission (the GFSC).

The GFSC contacted the Central Bank today to say that it has petitioned for the winding up of the Enterprise after the insurer told the GFSC that the company is insolvent and has not been able to secure additional funding.

14,000 Irish customers

The GFSC is now notifying the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority and regulators and compensation schemes in all countries where Enterprise has written business.

As well as Ireland, this includes France, Greece, Italy, Norway, and the UK.

The Central Bank said that it will work closely with the GFSC “to ensure all Irish motor policyholders are identified and are communicated with directly”.

“Motor insurance policyholders in Ireland, who bought insurance through the broker network, may be affected,” the Central Bank said.

“Any policyholder who has concerns about their policy should contact their broker in the first instance. Approximately 14,000 Irish customers have policies with Enterprise.” The company sold insurance in Ireland through a network of brokers.

Policyholders with questions are being told to contact the GFSC on 00 350 200 40284 or email enterprisepolicyholders@fsc.gi.

Motorists can also contact Enterprise on 00 350 200 50150.

Protection for motorists

The news comes on the same day that the government published a report on how to protect motorists in the case of an insurer collapsing.

It called for coverage of the Insurance Compensation Fund (ICF) to be extended to include third party motor insurance claims in the event of an insurer being liquated.

The review was arranged after the collapse of Setanta Insurance in 2014 left over 1,700 people out of pocket.

The report stated that the the level of cover from the ICF for third party motor insurance claims should be increased from 65% to 100% in line with that currently provided by the Motor Insurers’ Bureau of Ireland (MIBI).

The increased coverage will be funded by a direct contribution to the ICF from the motor insurance industry via MIBI to the value of 35% of the third party motor insurance claims.

Written by Paul O’Donoghue and posted on Fora.ie

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