the difference in excess structures

What is an excess anyway? Why are you responsible for that small sum of cash paid upfront when you claim from your comprehensive insurance policy? The answer: it’s how your insurer shares a small portion of the responsibility of the claim with you. But that isn’t where it ends, there are different types of excess structures that you can choose from, so we’re going to break it down for you.

basic vehicle excess

The basic excess is the first and standard excess assigned to any comprehensive vehicle policy. This excess is also commonly known as a fixed excess, which is the fixed amount that will be paid in the event of an insurance claim. But, there are also options, such as:

  • The option of paying a percentage of the claimed amount instead of a fixed excess amount.
  • An example of this would be paying 10% of the claim amount, with a minimum excess payable being R3,500.
  • Some insurance companies also offer an excess buy-back so that you pay less in the event of a claim.
  • This is where the insured (that’s you) opts to pay a higher monthly premium to have a lower excess amount at claims stage.

additional excesses

Every now and then, insurance companies have additional excesses added onto their comprehensive vehicle policy. These are occasionally called penalty excesses, because they are added in the event of a claim under the following circumstances:

  • If the claimant (that’s you) has had their driver’s license for less than two years.
  • If the driver, at the time of the claim, is under the age of 25.
  • If the driver, at the time of the claim, is not noted on the policy as a driver.
  • Whether there is a tracking device or security device installed in the vehicle after a theft or hijacking.

The excess is the amount that you will pay in the event of a claim, irrespective of who is at fault of the accident. Make sure you know what excess you’re liable for at claim stage to avoid any nasty surprises later on.