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The Experts guide to French Insurance French Home and Contents Cover Protecting your property, whether it’s a secondary home, main home or rented out on a short term, holiday or long term basis, is vital for peace of mind and also includes something very important: Public liability cover. What is Public liability cover? Public liability cover is included in your Home and Contents insurance with many insurers. As a rule the cover is against a claim for damage caused by the policyholder to a third party or their property. As mentioned above the level of cover varies according to the type of property being insured. For example the level of cover offered on a second home covers damage caused by the property to a third party. Cover for a main home extends to damages caused by the policyholder or a member of their family to a third party. For a property you may be renting out for short holiday periods Public Liability would continue as long as those staying at the property were there no longer than 3 consecutive months. For a longer term the tenant would need to subscribe to their own Public Liability policy. Levels of cover When choosing the level of cover for your property make sure you have the basics included such as storm, hail, snow, fire and water damage to mention a few. You may then want to add other options depending on the use of your property to your insurance such as a swimming pool pack, garden furniture pack or gîte cover if you run this type of business. Don’t forget if you do have a gite talk to your Mairie to make sure you are registered correctly as if not even if you are insured for your gite the insurance will not cover you in the event of a claim. Make sure you have measured all your rooms as well as outbuildings correctly when setting up your cover as in the event of a claim this is the type of element that is very important if a pay out is made. If you build an extension or change the use of one of your rooms think about calling the insurer or CA Britline if the insurance is set up with us, and check that the changes are reflected in your policy. French Vehicle Cover If your residence in France is your main home the chances are you will have at least one car. Whether you have opted to bring your right hand drive car over with you or have purchased a left-hand drive, insurance is obligatory.
If your vehicle is on UK number plates, visit your nearest prefecture to find out the process of changing to French plates. The process varies in the amount of time it takes depending on the make, model, age and country of origin of your vehicle. During this process your vehicle must be insured. Some UK insurers, if you have just moved over to France, may allow the insurance to continue for a set amount of time. If not, when taking out a French insurance policy make sure the insurer knows you are in the process of changing registration and find out how long they will insure you for whilst you are still on your English plates. If your residence in France is a holiday home and you have your car in the garage back home in the UK, do not make the mistake of thinking if it’s locked away and not in use no insurance is needed. For public liability purposes, the car must remain insured so you might want to change the level of insurance so a minimum level of cover is still in place. Car cover is very similar in France to what's provided in the UK. You will find ‘Third Party only’, ‘Third Party Fire and Theft’ and ‘Fully Comp’ equivalents along with a range of extras and options that can be included. Via CA Britline the basics of driver protection, public liability and legal assistance are included within each type of cover. Other options such as Homestart breakdown cover, glass damage and zero excess amongst others can also be set up at the outset or during the life of the contract. You may also have other types of vehicles at you property you wish to cover. Ride on lawn mowers, scooters, motorbikes and boats can all be catered for to keep all insurances under one roof. Legal Protection Cover If you are resident on a permanent basis in France Legal Protection is an inexpensive insurance cover giving you access to a team of French legal experts in the event of private, consumer and labour disputes. Some Home and Contents policies may have limited Legal Protection cover included however if you wish to have complete cover a stand-alone contract is the best option. If you're a UK resident, in some cases the cover can be taken out, however it will apply strictly to French litigation only. Health Cover: Holidays in France /Residing at your Secondary residence It is very important to apply for an EHIC card before you leave for your holidays abroad whether travelling to France or another European country. The card covers you up to 90 consecutive days for any medical treatment you may need when away. If you pay for any treatment, keep your receipts and proofs of treatment for a reclaim on your return home. For more information, to apply for or renew an EHIC card consult the NHS website. Health Cover: French Residents Once resident in France you will need to contact your local CPAM: Caisse Primaire d’Assurance Maladie to find out if you will automatically be covered by the French social security system for a certain percentage of your medical costs. If you are covered you will be provided with an attestation and then a Carte Vitale, which you have to present at all medical appointments, hospitals and chemists. You may wish to take out Top-Up Health insurance to cover the costs not reimbursed by CPAM. Depending on your needs, age and budget you will find a Top-Up cover to suit you. If you find out you are not covered by the CPAM you may need 100% Private Health cover. This can be obtained through CA Britline as is the case for Top-Up cover.
Bonjour and bienvenue to the Autumn
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