Information on EQC Inquiry 2019

Feedback sought by 10th February please

On 13th November 2018 Hon Dr Megan Woods announced the Government's terms of reference for its public inquiry into the Earthquake Commission. The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet on 23 November made a Proactive Release of 15 documents dating from December 2017 through to November 2018, and this was followed by the release of the Minutes of the Inquiry dated 28 January 2019. These documents may all be found on the DPMC website.

Since the initial release of the terms of Reference, BCCG National Executive has discussed the document at its 14th November 2018 quarterly meeting, and agreed that BCCG should consider the lodging of a submission to the Inquiry.

Subsequently, at the 22nd November 2018 Auckland Branch meeting, members present were unanimous in supporting BCCG in making a submission with specific reference to the EQC interpretation of "residential".

Inquiry matters requiring recommendations

The inquiry will make recommendations on:

  • lessons that can be learned from the Canterbury earthquake events and subsequent events relating to the management of operational practices. This should include contingency planning, preparedness, and the Commission's responsiveness (and, as relevant to the Commission's performance, the responsiveness of other insurers)
  • any changes or additions to operational practices as a result
  • any other matter which the inquiry believes may promote improved operational practices for future events and/or minimise the recurrence of any inadequacies in claims handling identified by the inquiry

Exclusions from the Inquiry should be noted:

The inquiry is not to investigate, determine, or report on, in an interim or final way, or otherwise prejudice, any of the following matters:

  • in accordance with section 11 of the Inquiries Act 2013, questions of civil, criminal, or disciplinary liability
  • the structural arrangements for central or local government
  • the Commission's funding structure (including levies)
  • the resolution of actual claims that remain unresolved
  • specific cases that are subject to current mediation, litigation, or arbitration proceedings
  • the reopening of settled claims
  • legal precedents (with regard to actual insurance claims) that have been established by the courts
  • issues relating to insurance contract law, the Limitation Act 1950, the Limitation Act 2010, the Earthquake Commission Act 1993, other insurers, and reinsurers that are unrelated to the Commission's claims management operational practices and claims outcomes

REQUEST

BCCG is seeking advice from members of any matter that you believe should be considered by us in making a decision on whether or not to proceed with a submission, and if so, what the content of that submission should be. If your issue is not excluded above, please email an outline of the issue to nat.admin@bccg.org.nz by Sunday 10th February.

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