Hoteliers being hit with insurance hikes

Hoteliers being hit with insurance hikes

Michael Magner, owner Vienna Woods Hotel in Glanmire. Picture: Howard Crowdy

HOTELS are being charged between 10% and 20% more for insurance than they were last year, according to a Cork hotelier.

Owner of the Vienna Woods Hotel in Glanmire, Michael Magner, is the chairman of the Irish Hotel Federation’s insurance committee.

He said: “I am hearing of businesses getting hit with price increases with their insurance, of between 10% and 20% - sometimes even higher.” Mr Magner joined with west Cork hoteliers in a meeting with the Minister of State with responsibility for Financial Services, Credit Unions and Insurance, Sean Fleming, in recent weeks.

Mr Magner said they are now awaiting contact from Minister Fleming following from a series of meetings with insurance companies.

Cork South West Fianna Fail TD Christopher O’Sullivan facilitated the meeting.

He said: “Hoteliers have pointed out their frustration with insurance premiums and the fact they feel like they’re seen as an easy target for claims and payouts. Minister Fleming is moving forward with the government’s plans to bring some common sense back to the insurance market, and take the target off the back of hoteliers. For too long they’ve been paying out on minor claims that defy common sense.” Minister of State Fleming has said reforms to the insurance sector, including the new guidelines for awards, should be fully implemented within the next year.

New compensation guidelines were adopted by the Judicial Council in April. The Guidelines set out the level of damages that may be awarded or assessed in respect of personal injuries.

The guidelines have reduced the amount of damages which can be awarded, particularly for minor injuries. Judges departing from the guidelines must give written reasons for doing so.

Deputy O’Sullivan added: “Even at a 50 percent drop its way above the European average, and there’s no guarantees the Insurance providers will even pass that on. We need assurances, because our hoteliers are facing huge challenges and reduced incomes, they shouldn’t have to suffer big premiums.”

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