Flushed with the success of processing and paying almost all hurricane
insurance claims and the positive response it brought, Fidelity today began
extending its opening hours to field the rush of queries from new customers.
The company is now opening at 8:30 am and closing at 5pm. Previously, the
hours were 9am to 4pm. Additionally, Fidelity will be keeping its doors open
through the Christmas holiday period, a time when insurance companies
traditionally close their offices until the new year.
Fidelity Insurance Vice–President Dale Edwards said the company’s settlement
of 95 per cent on motor claims and 80 per cent on home owner claims came through
dedicated staff putting in extra hours of work, and it has resulted in an
increased number of persons wanting to do business with the firm.
“Our phones have been ringing, ringing off the hook with enquiries for new
business,” Mr Edwards said.
He explained that this good–news story came through planning and preparation
of fidelity operations throughout the Caribbean.
“Prior to the beginning of the hurricane season we updated our Hurricane
Recovery Plan to include data recovery backup systems and other business
continuity measures. This ensured we were fully operational and open for
business within 72 hours of Hurricane Ivan’s passing,” Mr. Edwards said. “We had
a full catastrophe plan in place.”
Regional Marketing Manager Tom Gammage explained that the company does not
use paper files and backs up its records daily while sending them to different
territories. The Cayman insurance records were stored in the Turks and Caicos
Islands and the Bahamas.
“So we would have been able to retrieve our information even if the present
location was wiped out,” Mr. Edwards said.
Recognising that increased insurance premiums in the post–Hurricane Ivan
period may prove a burden on clients, Fidelity has drawn on its resources as a
group of companies and is offering loans from the banking section, enabling them
to meet their annual insurance payments easier.
“Rather than have to pay in two months, which is usually the case, we can
offer a payment plan in 10 months,” Mr. Edwards said.
Fidelity is a financial services group of companies, and its insurance
operations is on behalf of RoyalStar Assurance and NEMWIL.
“We are the conduit through which claims are paid,” said Mr. Gammage.
Fidelity’s handling of claims in the Cayman Islands apparently pleased the
principal insurance companies.
Managing Director of RoyalStar Assurance Steve Watson commented: “The
hurricane season of 2004 has been unprecedented. We have together with Fidelity,
our exclusive agents in Cayman, handled these events comfortably and have
provided in my opinion a high level of customer service”.