In the spirit of “Ve’Nahafochu”, we present three of our true insurance claims that somehow turned out differently from what we, or the clients, expected.
Case 1 – The Missing Tefillin:
Our client insured an expensive pair of tefillin (+/- $4,000) for All Risks cover (i.e. both inside and outside the house). He called us frantically one day to report that the tefillin were missing from his yeshiva. A week of posted notices, calls to the Yeshiva administration, etc. did not bear fruit. Reluctantly, our client reported the case to the police and we filed a claim. The claims check was issued and our client bought a new pair of tefillin. (This time, however, he kept them at home).
One day, during the silent amida, our client’s concentration was suddenly broken by a hand coming from behind him and placing – you guessed it! – his old tefillin on his shtender!! By the time he turned around, only davening Yeshiva men faced him. Obviously though, these tefillin no longer belonged to him. He hurried to our office to return them. I, in turn, took them to the insurance company and told the whole strange story.
- A huge Kiddush Hashem.
- The manager promptly asked me to offer the “old” tefillin back to our client at a greatly reduced rate. Our client, when I called him, had just celebrated his first son’s brit milah, and was more than happy to buy the Barmitzvah Tefillin a few years early!
Case 2 – The Car Chase:
The claim began in a brutal fashion. Our client’s wife returned to the family car in Jerusalem after a day’s work. As she was starting up, two men approached her and ordered her out of the car. Not taking any chances, she obeyed and watched helplessly as the two “punks” laughingly drove away. Again, a claim was filed and our client was paid out.
One night our client is driving a rental car in Jerusalem and suddenly in front of him appears his car, complete with its original color and license plates! Our client is suddenly filled with passion to have his old, beloved car back. He begins to tail “his” car, at the same time calling the police on his cell phone.
The police join the chase, and on King George St. two police cars suddenly block the road and force the driver to stop. Claiming total innocence, the driver says that he legally bought the car. Unfortunately (for him!) our client is right behind him to identify himself as the true owner of the car, as proved by the original license papers and bituach chova, still in the glove compartment. The “punk” is hauled away (and later positively identified by the client’s wife).
But who owns the car? Our client, who already has his check – or the insurance company, who has not yet transferred ownership of the “stolen” car?
- The insurance company offered to sell the car back to our client for a reduced rate rather than go through the legal tangle that the case presented.
- Our client was praised by the police for quick, decisive thinking and action.
Case 3 – The Nursing Care Claim:
Our clients were given a benefit from the school they had worked in in the US, when they made Aliyah. The school took out a generous nursing care policy which was paid by them every year. The years passed, and one of our clients unfortunately became ill and needed the policy. However, they had never kept any paperwork and the payments did not appear on their Israeli bank statements – they were being paid directly from the U.S.! In other words, their family was not aware that a policy existed.
One day, almost a year later, their daughter called about another insurance and in the course of the conversation, we asked after her dear parents. When we heard of the medical situation, we immediately asked why no claim had been made on the nursing care policy. “What policy??” was the startled reply!!
Results:From there, things progressed very quickly – we arranged retroactive payment and, of course, an ongoing monthly amount to help cover the nursing care expenses.
Moral of the story: Make sure that all your important documents are in an accessible place and that someone in the family is aware of what you have.
May all your claims turn out for the best.