Supreme Court ruling

15 December 2014

TOWER Insurance has welcomed new clarity in a Supreme Court decision which has ruled on a key step in settling all house insurance claims following the Canterbury earthquakes, David Ashe, TOWER’s Manager – Earthquake Recovery, said today.

“While we are disappointed the Court found against us on some points, we are glad to see its clear ruling that as an insurer we have the right to choose whether to settle a claim by managing a repair or rebuild ourselves, or by making a cash payment to our customer,” he said. 

TOWER had believed it had the option to settle in some cases by offering to buy a comparable new home, and this had been supported by two previous High Court decisions, but the Supreme Court ruled this alternative was not available to it.

No TOWER earthquake claims have in fact been settled by TOWER using this option and the company does not expect this ruling to have a material impact on TOWER’s future settlement payments.

TOWER is a leader in having now settled and closed 89% of all Canterbury claims.