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Policy updates

We’ve made some changes to our insurance cover that are important for you to be aware of and understand.

These changes will be effective on new and renewing policies from 22/05/22.

Your policy may look a little different - we’ve changed some titles, some sections have been moved around and we’ve updated the language we use to help make your policy document easier to read.

We’ve summarised some of these changes below and included examples of how these changes affect your insurance cover. It’s important that you read your policy schedule and policy document for full details of what’s covered.

Updates made to all personal insurance policy documents

If you have Small Business Insurance with us, you will receive information about updates to your business insurance policies when they are due to renew.

WriteMark Plus

We’ve updated some wording in your policy document and are proud to say it has achieved the WriteMark Plus plain language standard. Achieving the WriteMark Plus means that as well as meeting an established plain language criteria, our policy documents have been put to the test with real readers and customers who have provided feedback to help us improve them.

Learn more about WriteMark Plus.

New icon to explain what documents make up your insurance contract

Our policy documents now all feature a new icon which explains the documents which work together to form your insurance contract. This can be found at the start of the online policy document, or on page 2 of the PDF version.

New policies purchased

If you are purchasing new cover with AA Insurance, it’s important to note that for the first 48 hours of your period of insurance, your policy will not cover any loss, cost or liability, directly or indirectly caused by, arising from, or involving natural disaster, fire, storm or flood. However, we will not apply this exclusion in the following situations:

  • Your policy is renewing

  • You had cover that covered the loss you have reported immediately prior to setting your policy up with us, even if it was with another insurer

  • You started your policy when you purchased the asset you have insured with us.

Communicable disease

We’ve updated the ‘What you are not covered for’ section of your policy to include a section about ‘Communicable disease’ across our policies. This section explains that any loss, cost or liability related to communicable disease is not included.

Why is this section being added?

Like other insurers in New Zealand, we hold reinsurance cover which is essentially insurance for insurers. This enables us to continue to meet customer needs if a large event happens. Following the global impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic, the insurance industry worldwide has experienced financial impacts from additional costs incurred on claims. This has resulted in reinsurers confirming they are unable to cover costs associated with communicable disease and means we must update our policies.

What is a communicable disease?

A communicable disease is any disease that can be transmitted from one organism to another. While COVID-19 comes to mind, in the future it could be a new or different communicable disease.

What does this mean for my insurance cover?

If there are any costs incurred on a claim that you make with us that are related to a communicable disease, the portion of your claim that has been impacted by a communicable disease may not be covered.

Some examples of how this may impact your insurance cover are:

  • New Zealand enters a two-week lockdown while repairs are being carried out on your home after widespread flood damage. As a result, the scaffolding needs to remain on site for an additional two weeks. The extra cost for the scaffolding will not be covered under the policy.

  • You have recently given your friend a ride home in your vehicle. A few days later they advise you that they have contracted a communicable disease and you are advised to decontaminate your vehicle. These decontamination costs will not be covered under the policy.

  • Due to a communicable disease outbreak, there are additional government requirements for cleaning and sanitisation. While completing repairs for fire damage at your home, the costs associated with the additional cleaning and sanitisation will not be covered under the policy.

To see the full exclusion, please review your policy document.

Trusts and companies

We have included some wording to make it clearer that all members of a trust, and directors or representatives of a company, must follow the conditions of the policy.

To see the all applicable conditions trustees, directors and/or representatives must follow, please see your policy document.

Electronic data and cyber events

We’ve updated the ‘What you are not covered for’ section of your policy to include sections about ‘Electronic data’ and ‘Cyber events’ across our policies. These sections explain that any loss, cost or liability related to electronic data and cyber events is not included. This could arise from deletion or corruption of electronic data, or a cyber act or incident.

Why is the new section being added?

Like other insurers in New Zealand, we hold reinsurance cover which is essentially insurance for insurers. This enables us to continue to meet your needs if a large event happens.  

With technology changes to vehicles and homes, our gadgets being updated faster than ever before, and the recent increase in cyber incidents and cyber acts around the world, our reinsurers have introduced an additional cyber exclusion that means we must update our policies.

What is a cyber act or incident?

A cyber act is when someone else accesses, uses, processes or operates one or more of your computer systems for malicious or criminal reasons.

A cyber incident is when one or more of your computer systems malfunctions or fails to work correctly.

Both terms, as well as the term ‘computer system’, can be found in the ‘Definitions’ section of your policy document.

What does this mean for my insurance cover?

Your policy does not cover loss, cost or liability caused by or in any way connected with electronic data or cyber events.” Some examples of how this may impact your policy with us are:

  • A vehicle that can connect to the internet is having issues with the new software update that has been downloaded to it by the manufacturer. This means the vehicle needs to be looked at by a repairer to remedy the issue. The cost for the repair in this case will not be covered under the policy.

  • A smart home system has had malware installed on it, causing issues that require a technician to reinstall the software. The cost of the technician will not be covered under the policy.

  • A laptop you own has had a computer virus, causing files to be deleted. This requires a technician to restore the deleted files. The cost of the technician will not be covered under the policy.

It is important to note that if there is accidental physical damage that causes impact to a computer system, or a cyber act or incident has caused physical damage, you may have cover. Please see your full policy document for further details.

To see the full exclusions, as well as the definitions for ‘computer system’, ‘cyber act’ and ‘cyber incident’, please see your policy document.

Updates to car insurance

Keys and locks

We’ve increased your excess-free cover for ‘Keys and locks’ from $750 to $1,000. If your claim for stolen keys is under $1,000 and we have reason to believe the thief knows the location of your vehicle, your claim will be excess-free. If the value of your claim is over $1,000, we still have you covered – you just need to contribute towards the replacement. The most you will need to contribute is the ‘Comprehensive excess’ shown on your policy schedule.

To see the full benefit details, please see your policy document.

Updates to caravan insurance

Caravan contents

We’ve increased the ‘Caravan contents’ benefit limit from $2,000 to $3,000 to provide you with more cover. This means if you claim for contents owned by you which are permanently kept in your caravan, we will pay up to $3,000. This could be items such as unfixed furniture, furnishings, rugs, lamps or appliances.

To see the full benefit details, please see your policy document.

Updates to motorhome insurance

Motorhome contents

We’ve increased the ‘Motorhome contents’ benefit limit from $2,000 to $3,000 to provide you with more cover. This means if you claim for contents owned by you which are permanently kept in your caravan, we will pay up to $3,000. This could be items such as unfixed furniture, furnishings, rugs, lamps or appliances.

To see the full benefit details, please see your policy document.

Updates to contents insurance

Your children’s possessions while they are living at an educational facility

We’ve combined the existing standard benefits ‘Children at boarding school’ and ‘Children in tertiary accommodation’ into one new standard benefit called ‘Children living at an educational institution’. The great news is that the limits have also been removed, so your children’s possessions can be covered as an extension of your Contents Insurance Policy.

Please note, the Limited Contents Insurance Policy does not include this benefit.

To see the full details of this new standard benefit, please see your policy document.

Updates to landlord insurance

Cover for illegal drug use

We’ve updated our optional ‘Extended landlord cover’ benefit to clarify that if you choose this optional benefit, we will pay up to $30,000 to decontaminate your rental home if the damage caused by chemical contamination exceeds 1.5μg/100 cm2 due to your tenant using, consuming, storing or manufacturing illegal drugs. If any specific level of chemical contamination is set out in regulation made under the Residential Tenancies Act, we will only pay under this benefit if the level of chemical contamination in your rental home exceeds the level outlined in those regulations. If you also choose the optional benefit ‘Landlord contents cover’, your landlord contents will be covered within this limit also.

To see the full benefit details, please see your policy document.