Paris Terrorist Attack Claim Advice
Important information for policyholders in relation to the Paris terrorist attack.
On 13 November 2015, IS terrorists launched an attack on Paris. Go Insurance understands that over 130 people have been killed and hundreds more wounded in the Paris terrorist attack. French authorities have declared a national state of emergency following the Paris terrorist attack. This state of emergency, which will last for at least 12 days, means the French authorities are able to control access to public areas and restrict public gatherings. Three days of national mourning have been declared and French authorities are recommending people avoid public areas and remain indoors if possible.
The Paris terrorist attack has also resulted in France exercising tighter border controls and if permitted entry, travelers can expect much more exhaustive immigration and customs processes. Some road border crossings have been closed and public transport services will experience significant disruption due to the Paris terrorist attack.
The Australian government has urged Australians in Paris and surrounding areas to remain vigilant, avoid public areas if possible, follow the instructions of local authorities and also stay up-to-date with media reports.
Whilst the Australian government has not increased the overall travel warning for France following the Paris terrorist attack, they have advised travelers to “reconsider their need to travel” if travelling to Paris and surrounding areas.
Travellers in France or those planning to travel to France are also advised to register their travel with www.smartraveller.gov.au.
“In principle” advice regarding likely policy response to claims for medical expenses, cancellation, disruption and delay of scheduled travel arrangements is provided below.
For Single Trip policies purchased prior to 14 November 2015 and trips booked under Annual Multi Trip policies prior to 14 November 2015:
1. Overseas Medical Expenses
There is provision within the policy to cover policyholders if they are injured as a result of terrorism. If you are in Paris and have been injured in the Paris terrorist attack, please contact us for assistance.
2. Disruption experienced post-departure
Claims for disruption to scheduled travel arrangements post-departure are for consideration under Section 1 or Section 10.
Subject to relevant terms and conditions, Section 1 will respond to compensate the policyholder for additional travel expenses incurred to curtail the trip (and a proportionate refund of unused arrangements) if DFAT issues a warning advising against travel to the affected area or the government of any affected country prevents entry.
(NOTE: DFAT has not issued a warning to advise against travelling to France as a whole – the warning is only for Paris and surrounding areas)
Subject to relevant terms and conditions, Section 10 operates to provide financial assistance in the event the departure of public transport on which the policyholder is booked to travel is delayed by at least 12 hours. Section 10 does not operate if the policyholder has claimed under Section 1 or 12 (Special Events) in relation to the same cause.
In the event of travel to Paris and surrounding areas, the policyholder must act as a “prudent uninsured” and proceed on the most economical basis to minimise their loss. We therefore suggest in the first instance you liaise with airlines and associated travel providers to reschedule travel arrangements / obtain refunds as appropriate.
All claims for additional accommodation and travel expenses must be supported by receipts, evidence of pre-booked travel schedule and actual travel arrangements.
3. Disruption experienced pre-departure
If the policyholder has planned to travel to Paris or surrounding areas; has not yet departed on the insured trip; and their outbound flight arrangements are cancelled due to:
- Delayed departure of the initial outbound flight beyond 12 hours; or
- DFAT issuing a travel warning advising against travel to the affected region and which remains in force 7 days prior to scheduled travel;
there is provision within the policy for amendment costs or reimbursement of irrecoverable payments made in the event of total cancellation (Section 1) due to the Paris terrorist attack.
Section 1 provides to cover the cost incurred to amend the policyholder’s travel to a later date / alternate route OR the cost of forfeited pre-booked travel arrangements if the trip is cancelled (whichever is the lesser). If a policyholder’s travel is affected, we retain the option to decide which of these options will be used as the basis for determining policy response.
Some airlines offer full refunds in the event of cancellation due to terrorism and we therefore recommend policyholders liaise with the airline/s, travel agent/s and associated travel providers to minimise any loss / claim.
For Single Trip and Multi Trip policies purchased on or after 14 November 2015:
Insurance serves to provide cover for sudden and unforeseen risks. It is not possible to insure against known risks and the policy specifically excludes claims resulting from circumstances known at the time of policy purchase or trip booking and which could reasonably be expected to give rise to a claim.