In some cases we can speed up the cash settlement of minor building damage by carrying out a digital assessment rather than having an assessor visit your property.
To date we have received over 400 serious and moderate dwelling claims and over 1100 minor dwelling claims.
All claims are important to us but we are prioritising serious and moderate claims first. As a result it may be several months before an assessor is available to visit properties with minor damage.
You have the option of speeding up the process by completing a earthquake assessment form of your damage and sending it through to us for consideration.
The main difference between waiting for an assessor to visit is time. It's a lot quicker for you to complete this assessment yourself and send it to us so we can process your claim digitally. The second difference is that you will need to hire a contractor (such as a certified builder) to assess and cost the damage. Please note that this cost will only be reimbursed to you once your claim is validated as being earthquake related.
What we need from your contractor:
What we need from you:
If you are unable to engage a contractor due to your rural location or a contractor being unavailable, we’d like to hear from you to discuss how else we may be able to help progress your claim.
Return the form to us using one of these methods:
PO Box 1943
Palmerston North Central
Palmerston North 444
1. We will contact you to confirm the details of your claim and discuss the next steps with you.
2. Next steps may include sending us documentation, photos, and quotes.
3. We will look at your claim and decide whether an assessor needs to visit you. This will depend on the extent of the damage.
4. If an assessor needs to visit you, they'll contact you and make a time to visit your home and carry out a full assessment. (You'll need to be at home for this.) The full assessment will involve a detailed appraisal of the damage to your property. Click here for more information on what our assessors do.
5. Digital assessment for minor dwelling damage is an option. Read more about this here.
6. Settlement - once we all the information we need we will work out your settlement which may be a cash settlement, repair, replacement or rebuild.
After you've lodged your building claim, an FMG assessor will make an appointment to visit your property.
The home assessment process
After you've lodged your building claim, an FMG assessor will phone you to make a time to visit your property and carry out a full assessment.
This is a detailed appraisal of the damage to your home. It will be carried out by an assessor and they may be accompanied by an estimator (licensed building practitioner).
You need to be available at the property for the full assessment.We will provide at least 24 hours' notice (unless a different arrangement has been previously negotiated).Appointments can be re-arranged.
The FMG representatives will inspect:
The FMG representatives won't be able to enter any areas that they believe are unsafe.
Settling your claim
The information from the full assessment is given to our claims team. We'll analyse this, along with information relating to any other claims you've made. We'll use tihs information to calculate your settlement.
1. Find out about the repair process for homes with different amounts of damage.
Small claim cash settlements
If your home did not sustain structural damage and the cost of repair has been estimated as being under $100,000 plus GST you will (or already have) receive a cheque from EQC.
For people whose overall home repair or replacement will cost more than $15,000 (+ GST) and less than the EQC cap, which is usually $100,000 (+ GST) per event
Your claim(s) will be referred to the Canterbury Home Repair Programme (CHRP).You can nominate a contractor however they will need to be accredited for ongoing work with the programme and be available to do the work when it is planned.
For people whose home repair or replacement will cost over the EQC cap – for most people this is $100,000 (+ GST)
If damage from any single event exceeds the EQC cap (usually $100,000 + GST), the management of repairs or replacement will be handed over to Inovo, a spceilaist project management company, who will work with you on our behalf.
If you have a mortgage (or other financial security) on the property, we'll usually pay the settlement amount to the mortgagee.If your property is freehold, we'll pay the settlement amount to you.
If you have received a settlement payment to make repairs to your home, it’s important you use this money to complete those repairs. If you chose not to, it may affect your future entitlement to EQC and insurance cover.
What to do when you receive your insurance claim money
If you are managing your own repairs you are responsible for such things as hiring contractors and complying with all relevant legislation such as the Building Act 2004.
For more information about managing your repairs read the booklet Rebuild with Confidence, available on the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment website.
Once you have received a cash settlement for your contents claim, you can spend the money on whatever you want. You don't have to replace the item if you don't want to.
Our assessors will visit your property and work through what we need to do to get your property repaired. The time assessors spend with you will vary depending on how many dwellings and other factors are involved.
Some claims may be extremely complex and take more time for our assessors to work through.
For example, a rural property may consist of a homestead, shearing quarters, other dwellings and outbuildings, commercial buildings, garages, sheds, and swimming pool.
Our assessor will work with you to prioritise which building needs to be assessed and settled first. They will walk through the property with you so you can show earthquake damage you have observed.
Our assessor will:
Once they have returned to the office they will process your claim and will recommend either settlement, rebuild or repair work, depending on your claim and type of policy.
It's really important to take clear photos of your damage, particularly if we are assessing your claim digitally. The photos will provide us with enough information on which to assess your claim, so the clearer they are, the better.
The Schedule of Loss form
If you have difficulty completing the form, phone us on 0800 366 466 and we'll talk you through it.
Important: Please include your claim number in any correspondence you send to us.
Processing your claim
Send in your contents claim – including all the supporting documentation – as soon as you can.
We generally process claims in the order they're received. However, we give priority to people who are vulnerable because of illness, age or other special factors. If this applies to you or someone you know, call us on 0800 366 466.
Keep some items
We may need to inspect damaged items that are worth more than $500 when we process your claim. For this reason, you should keep those items until your claim has been settled. If you can't keep them please take photos and send a copy to us.
If you'd like to be paid electronically, please make sure you've provided us with a bank deposit slip or a letter from your bank identifying your bank account number. (We can accept these electronically if they're scanned and emailed.)