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The following was posted today on Facebook by Christchurch professional and mother of two, Jo Scott. Just before Christmas she and her young family received a letter from EQC finally, after more than 7 years, confirming their house is in fact "over cap" (should be with the insurer after a $100,000 plus GST "over cap" payment is paid out to her / the bank). This is her post from today:
"Today my heart goes out to the thousands of Canterbury homeowners battling to get their homes fixed properly or claims settled with EQC.
It is such a stressful, exhausting and wellbeing-eroding process. I want you all to know that people care, to be strong and to look after yourselves.
This morning I spent 41 minutes on the phone to EQC (during which I was out on hold three times). I had two simple and reasonable questions:
1) How much will our overcap payment be?
2) When will you pay us?
These are questions I asked in early December but got no answer to.
Overcap payments are generally $115,000.
This morning I was advised that in our case, EQC wants to take off around $40,000 that it spent painting and plastering our home and sanding our floors after the quakes. That may seem reasonable except for the fact that to repair the foundation damage to our home, the floors will have to be removed so the house can be lifted. This will result in every wall and ceiling having to be replastered and repainted... so all of the repairs to date will be undone.
It’s clear to us EQC should write off that $40,000 (given their failure to assess the property properly in the first place). If they don’t, our family will have to pay for the house to be repainted and plastered. We are not trying to wrought the system, simply get what we are entitled to.
I asked for a face to face meeting to discuss the issue. The team that handles those requests is on leave for another week.
I hung up the phone wanting to cry... but I am too tired to.
It took us nearly 7 years to get EQC to accept our foundation damage was quake related and we are still having to fight to get what is fair. In the meantime, the file gets passed from desk to desk at EQC with no outcome so we can’t move on.
The system is so flawed it’s beyond belief. You have to fight to have even the most simplest questions answered. It’s exhausting and heartbreaking at times.
So if you are one of the tens of thousands fighting this ridiculous system, know you are not alone. Do not give up but do not let it steal your soul.
I’m off to the beach or something now to take a break. I’ll recoup and push again later.
I hope the rest of you take those breathers too."