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Reprieve for motorists as insurers to settle curfew claims

Your insurance claim will not be rejected for accidents that happen during curfew hours, the Association of Kenya Insurers (AKI) has clarified.

This comes as a reprieve after AKI dismissed a statement by an insurance agents’ lobby that warned motorists that insurers would not settle claims for accidents that take during curfew hours.

“The motor vehicle insurance (motor vehicle private, motor vehicle commercial and motor vehicle (PSV) contract documents were standardized and came into effect on 1st February 2012. These are the approved documents for use by all companies transacting motor vehicle insurance,” read part of the statement.

“As per the approved and standardized motor insurance policy documents, driving past and during curfew hours is not an exclusion in the current motor vehicle insurance covers. As such, insurance companies cannot reject motor vehicle claims based on timing.”

AKI, however, noted that driving past curfew hours does not warrant an insurance firm to dismiss a claim unless other circumstances were leading to an accident.

The Association of Kenya Professional Insurance agents (AKPIA) had in a statement earlier this week disclaimed themselves from eventualities likely to occur between 8pm and 4am, though a notice stating that they will not settle claims out of incidences that occur during hours the government has barred movement.

“Driving past curfew hours without essential services authorisation or valid emergency reasons could render your motor insurance claim invalid. Please AVOID DRIVING PAST 8:00PM/Curfew Hours and adhere to all other GOK/MOH COVID-19 guidelines,” AKPIA stated in the Sunday public notice.

AKI however said motorists who have incidents while driving during curfew hours should be treated as normal incidents, adding that the offence of being outside during this time should be dealt with by law enforcement agencies.

“Any motor insurance claim that arises during curfew hours cannot be dismissed based on the time of the accident. If you violate curfew hours, then the police will charge you with that violation,” said AKI.

The Authority said it had not received any request to vary the general terms and conditions of motor insurance contract documents to include curfew requirements.

“Consequently, payment of any motor claims is subject to the existing contracts between the insureds (policyholders) and insurers (insurance companies),” the statement added.

“However, should there be other circumstances that are excluded from the motor insurance policy the claim can be denied on those circumstances. We advise customers whose claims were denied on the basis of getting an accident during curfew hours to visit their insurer for review.”

In his State of the Nation Address, President Kenyatta announced a cessation of movement into and out of Nairobi, Kiambu, Machakos, Kajiado and Nakuru, further reviewing curfew hours in the regions to 8pm-4am.

Curfew hours in the rest of the 42 counties remain 10pm to 4am.