Episode 7 Rip Off Britain

Episode 7

Angela Rippon, Gloria Hunniford and Julia Somerville travel the country tackling sharp practices affecting consumers and investigating rip-offs and concerns both big and small.

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We asked you to tell us who has left you feeling ripped awe.


think this is very wrong for what they have done. The bank charges


upon charges, upon charges. Legally it was right. Morally that is where


the question of cut out comeles. And you contacted us in your


thousand, but post, e-mail, even stopping us in the streets. The


message could not be clearer. are trying to fob you off. I am not


happy. There is the small print with the clause that you didn't


reel rice. We are being ripped off big time. Whether it's a deliberate


rip off; a mistake or a catch, we will find out why you are out-of-


pocket and what you can do about it. Keep asking the questions. Go to


the top if you have to. We do get results. Your stories, your money.


This is Rip Off Britain. Welcome to Rip Off Britain. The series that


takes on the companies giving you good reason to gripe and feel


frustrated. Now, if you think you are getting a raw deal, we are all


here to get to the bottom of what is going on. That is right. We are


ininvestigating something that affects millions and leavessome of


you feeling short changed and exploited. Why has the cost of car


insurance gone through the roof? Why indeed. Anybody who drives a


car is already feeling the squeeze with high fuel prices, but the


coast of insurance is hitting you hard. Recent figures from the A


show our car insurance has gone up by an average of 30% this year.


That is a shocking amount. We are going to find out why. Also coming


up. The residents getting parking fines for driving into their own


homes.. My car is clocked by their camera, and because I don't buy a


ticket for the car park because I am coming into my house, that sends


a message to their computer, they send me a fine which goes up to


�100. When woeped our pop up shop we built our very own gripe box,


and you made use of it by airing your frustrations. It had gone up


to just over 1,000. I had to pay �2,000 to insure it what a rip off.


You might expect the price of car insurance to vary bait depending on


where you live but some you have have discovered by living in


certain post codes you can end up virtually uninsurable. That is what


happened to the driver we are about to meet. He lives in Bradford where


the car insurance has risen more sharply than anywhere else. So much


so some districts have been blacklisted. You will get a quote


that is impossibly high or they won't give you one at all. Even if


you are one of the best drivers in town. Driving has been a big part


of Richard Summerscale's life and that doesn't just apply to steering


a trolley round his local cash and carry. The sandwich shop owner


admits he's couldn't be without his car. It is his lifeline, for runger


rands and stocking up on supplies for his business. I would be lost.


There is no way I could do deliveries, pick up the required


bits we need, you know the shopping, cash and carry, and generally


getting about town. He has years of experience behind the wheel. In


fact he would have a good claim to be among Britain's safest drivers.


I was in West Yorkshire Police for 15 years. Part of the time I spent


in the road traffic department. I went on advance driving course,


accident investigation which mean I can see things before normal drives.


It is no surprise he believes he's is low risk when getting insured.


He had been with esure for fiv years and was happy with them until


last year, when despite no new claims or conviction, the former


traffic cop's policy was set to go up from �156, to �885. The first


reply is because that is what the computer said. I wasn't happy soy


pushed it further. They said they were getting a lot of claims in


Bradford, I said not from me! Richard took his business elsewhere.


The best he could get was a �317 policy with another company. And


when 12 months on that looked like it was going to creep up too, he


decided to see what his previous insurer esure could quote this time.


As soon as I spoke to the person, gave me detail, went through the


quote and they say sorry, we are unable to quote in your postcode


area. Despite the fact that esure insured him in the past, they were


now refusing to. Richard was furious. At being classed as a


driver who was uninsurable. I was ensensed. I had paid my premium on


time all the previous year, they were happy to ache my money.


Suddenly it becomes not as economical. Plenty of other local


drives experienced the same thing. So many after being inundated with


complaints from stit wents Bradford east MP David Ward conducted a


city-wide survey. He found over the last three years the 511 people who


took part saw their premiums rise by 63%. What people are saying is


why it is that I have lived in this area for year, I haven't changed,


in fact I may have improved as a driver, and had yet another year of


no claims, no accidents at all, and still my insurance premiums are


going up. It isn't fair. Esure told us that Richard's original premium


of �146 was down to an error by one of their staff who applied a


discount that he wasn't entitled to Richard should have been pay morgue


than double that but their explanation for the huge increase


to �885 and their refusal to insure him again is one that you will hear


from most insurance companies. They say a surge in personal injury


claims and pay outs have pushed up premiums for everyone, leading to


companies like esure temporarily suspending offering new policys in


the worst affectedary tkwhra, is why Richard was left uninsurable.


Because although this is a national problem in Bradford whiplash claims


are six times the national average fpblt there has been a large


increase in the number of personal injury claim but the amount per


claim is going up. So we need to identify certainly how can we


reduce the cost of claims, of making claims, but also look at the


number of claims that are taking place, particularly those that are


deemed to be fraudulent claim, the increase in the whiplash kaim cases


that are coming forward, is reaching an unsustainable level.


Across the country the number of personal injury claims has rocketed.


Number of accidents is down. Many say that is because the so-called


compensation culture is encouraging people to make claims whether they


have been seriously injured or not. The whole industry has sprung up to


encourage that. Claims management companies and some insurers can


earn huge referral fees by selling on the details of people involved


in accident, to Ieuan Wyn Jones no fee lawyers who can typically made


�1350 for themselves on a whiplash settlement. The Government has


announced it intends to ban referral fees and to reform the no


win no fee system. But, I have to say that is little consolation for


drivers facing soaring premise yourpls like Richard refused all


together. If they are having claims that cost too much they are the


problem, not the innocent careful drivers that can't get insurance or


ridiculous premiums. The Government has said it plans to ban referral


fees in personal injury claims. As we have heard, they are reckoned to


be one of the key factors in the soaring costs. It is hoped this


will happen some time in 2012. So let us fee the savings the industry


is expected to make as a result really do make a difference to our


premiums. And we were talking more about car insurance later on, but


next, parking fines. I know that one of your biggest bugbear, I can


see you going argh! Especially when the charge doesn't seem fair. Here


is a classic example of that. People who didn't park anywhere


they shouldn't but still got tickets totalling thousands of


pounds, and indeed are being chased by debt collector, when all they


have done is drive legitimately to their own homes. Hannah has a funny


feel sheing is being watched. Every day, she has a sensation that


someone, somewhere knows exactly what she is doing. They watch me


coming in, they watch me when I leave, 24-hours a day. Musician


Hannah lives in a flat above a shop on the high street in Chorlton in


Manchester. Her only access to her property is through the back.


moved in here two years ago and they were already outside. I have


to go past them every time I leave the flat. It is frustrating.


what is it she is so angry about? These. ANPR cameras are automatic


number plate recognition cameras, which are positioned right outside


her house. The service the car park and are operated by Excel Parking,


which is a private parking company. Only they don't just photograph the


cars in the car park. When I drive in through the road to the cash


park my car is clocked by their camera because I don't buy a ticket


because I am coming in, that sends a message, they send me a fine


which goes up to �100. The problem is that the cameras cannot


differentiate between the cars coming into park, and those who are


just driving through. As a result, Hannah says she and her flat mate


and all the visitors have between them managed to wrack up more than


50 tickets which comes to more than �5,000 in fines. Hannah hasn't paid


as she doesn't think she should have to. As far as she is concerned


there is no other way for her to get on to her driveway. The letters


are aggressive. I reply pilotly, then I ignore any future


correspondence they send me. It is different if you live here. You


feel responsible for friend, family, who visit, who get tickets, you


feel you have to warn them in advance, if you get a ticket in the


next few weeks don't pay it. That sets them on the path of months of


faff with Excel. Her friend and fellow musician Aine has had two


tickets. The company waived the first fine she disputed but they


have not been so accommodating with the second one. I sent the same I


mail and they refused to waive that one. On my second e-mail I provied


them with a photograph of my carton driveway. This is nine months ago,


the car is registered to my dad and he is being chased by debt


collectors for the fine which is �100 he gets phone calls from them


every day. Hannah contacted Excel with her registration number and


for six months the letters and charges stopped. When she got a new


car they started piling up again. Within the first two months of


having the new car we had about five or six tickets. It got


ridiculous. We decided the try and take a different tack and see what


rights we had for living here. So we contacted local councillors to


see if they could put a stop to it P Councillor Victor Chamberlain has


agreed to him. He says because motorist worst age to use as a cut


through for 40 years they should be able to do so again. What I am


doing is working with residents and the MP to get the Manchester City


Council to recognise the established right of way, and we


are hoping this will mean that residents won't be impacted in the


future because they won't, they have the right to access their


driveway. Without being charged. But Excel Parking are taking a hard


line on this. They dispute Hannah's version of event, particularly in


regard to the number of tickets they have issued and point out they


have cancelled many of the charge notices on appeal. But in any case,


they stress they are the rightful occupier and that there is no right


of way across the car park to any premises. With signs making it


clear that it is private property. They say they have been totally


reasonable with the resident, allowing them to register their


vehicles so they can be exempt and investing in additional technology


so they can filter the vehicles out. But they also say it is impossible


for them to identify vehicles which are not registered at these address,


or indeed keep up with changing tenants if they are not informed.


They refute any suggestion that their letters are aggressive and


stress they comply with all the requirements of the British Parking


Hannon does not agree. I would love it to end. I understand it is a


tricky situation but I would love it to be dealt with more competent


lay and by different individuals who could help you out.


competently. If, like them, you think you are being unfairly


charged or penalised or if you are being pursued for a payment that


you think is unjustified, then Michelle from Consumer Direct is


here with some great tips on what to do. If you need to make a


complaint about a company, there are a few things that you should do.


If you are unsure of your legal rights, then take some advice


before you speak to the company. It is important that you gather


evidence if you complain, so keep a record of any telephone calls that


you make and copies of any letters, and if the problem is about work


you have had done, perhaps take photographs. You should speak to


the company in question telling them what the problem is, remaining


polite but firm at all times. Tell them what you want them to do and


by when. Often speaking to them face to face will help you to


resolve the matter without any further redress. If speaking to the


company does not work, put your complaint in writing, tell them


what you want to do, what is wrong, and by when you want the problems


resolved. Keep a copy of your letter and get some proof of


postage if possible. If you are still unable to get the matter


resolved, then you may need to consider taking more formal action.


If the company is a member of an approved traders scheme or a trade


association, they may be able to offer you mediation or arbitration,


or you may be able to consider an ombudsman scheme or an alternative.


If you paid using credit or by credit card, and the goods or


services cost more than �100, your finance company may be jointly


liable and may be able to offer you further assistance. If your problem


remains unresolved, then take advice from Consumer Direct or your


local Citizens Advice Bureau. Earlier we heard how the cost of


car insurance has soared over the last 12 months and it is new


drivers who have been hit particularly hard. Their policies


have gone up by way more than the average and it is reckoned that


someone who has just got their licence will typically pay almost


double the amount they would have done last year. The industry puts


that down to a number of factors, including uninsured drivers and


those false claims the government hopes to crack down on. But


whatever their justification, the money most companies ask young


drivers to pay has left a whole generation feeling like they are


being priced off the road. Passing his driving test was a milestone


for Peter and his mother, Julie. As a young man of 17, it meant he was


on the road to independence. When I passed my test I was over the moon.


I could not believe it, really. I thought it was great that I could


finally go out and drive whenever I wanted to go. When Peter passed his


test I was overjoyed. I was thrilled to bits. I immediately


texted all my friends. I could not wait to get home and give him a big


kiss and congratulate him. It was fantastic. But their initial


excitement faded as soon as they started looking into the cost of


insurance. Some of them were �17,000, which at that point, you


just think, my God, what is going on? So, with quotes as high as


�17,000, Julie started to look at other options. She got a quote from


her insurance company to see how much it would cost to simply add


Peter to her own policy. But that was not cheap either. I was insured


at a good price of 500-odd pounds. I rang up asking if I could put my


son on as another named driver and the quote was �3,895. That would be


a whopping increase of �3,375, an amount that would put a massive


strain on their finances. It is not actually much less than my mortgage.


It would stand at about 350 a month, and on top of your finances, what


you have already got, outgoing, month after month, that is


astronomical. So Julie has not gone ahead with that. Peter may have


passed his test but he is still not on the road. Well, not without a


lift from Mum, anyway. My mates can drive and I cannot at the moment.


You want to go and drive, but you cannot. You can go out with your


mates, but it is not the same thing. You can be sat in the passenger


seat, but you just want to get your hands on the steering wheel and


drive yourself. Of course, Peter is just one of countless young drivers


facing exactly the same problem. You pay so much money for the


lessons and then they just cannot drive, can they? And that is all


they want to do, isn't it, just drive? Just down the road, Peter's


friend Rhys and his mother Joanne also struggled to find a quote they


could afford. When I started looking at quotes, I was really


shocked at the prices. The dearest one was �20,000, and I think the


cheapest one was �2,000 plus. Luckily for them, Rhys's father is


in the motor trade and he got a more reasonable quote through his


trader policy. I think that worked out at �860, which is still an


awful lot of money. The car is not really worth that. Another friend,


Chase, also feels priced out of the insurance market. How are you doing,


Chase, what are you going to do with your insurance? I am just


going to have to go on my mum's insurance to make it cheaper. On my


own, it is stupid money, about ten grand for myself. Quotes like these


are typical for teenage drivers. Insurance companies say it is


because statistics show that young drivers have more accidents. Simon


Douglas from the AA explains. they do have an accident, they do


tend to be more serious, and the average claim cost for a young


driver is something like �5,000 or more, whereas for an older driver


it is probably under �2,000. There is one option which could drive the


boys' premiums down. One thing you might want to consider is these new


insurance products, pay how you drive, where they fit the device in


the car that measures how you drive as an individual and they give you


a premium based on your own driving behaviour. Not the average for your


whole peer group. For some people, if you're willing to be measured in


this way, it can bring the cost of insurance down significantly.


the meantime, the situation leaves their parents wondering if there


was any point getting them lessons at this age. I just do not know


where we're going to go. I am gutted for him, just gutted. They


might as well just wait and let them get a job when they are 24, 25,


it might be slightly cheaper. Well, the one good thing to come


out of car insurance being so pricey is it has prompted a lot of


scrutiny about people in a position to do something about it. The


Office Of Fair Trading is currently investigating the issue and plans


to publish its findings later this month. If it decides the industry


is acting in an uncompetitive manner or treating customers


unfairly, it may take further action.


At a time when money is tighter than ever, you need to know that


your cash is working hard for you, avoiding rip-offs and sharp


practice along the way. So we have put together a booklet of tips and


advice to help safeguard your money. You can find a link to the free


guide on our website... To receive a copy in the post, send an A5


self-addressed envelope to the address we will be giving at the


end of the programme. Still to come on Rip Off Britain, we ask you to


tell us what has left you feeling ripped off and we have been


inundated with your stories. And this year we were able to solve


some of your problems in person at the Rip Off Britain pop up shop.


You will find you can probably save hundreds of pounds each year on


your car and home insurance. Plus, we will have more examples of


spiralling insurance costs. Should you have to pay higher premiums if


you have not got a job? One of the reasons that they gave was that


unemployed people have more time on their hands and they travel more to


Next, how a series of unfortunate mistakes can spiral out of control,


leaving one Rip Off Britain viewer paying more than she bargained for


when she moved 2.5 miles down the road. In January this year, Jean


and Bob Wharmby swapped life in a rural village just outside


Lichfield in Staffordshire for a modern home in a new housing estate


closer to town. They were looking forward to their retirement after


spending their working lives running a hotel. We decided to move


here because I knew the area, a lovely area, and convenient to the


city centre. After the move, Jean told her car insurance company Saga


about her change of address. But she was astonished to discover that


the move just 2.5 miles down the road was to have an unwelcome


impact on her premiums. She said, that is going to cost you a lot of


money. I said, why? She said, well, it is the area you are in. We go on


postcodes. So I said, how much is it going to cost me? Until August.


This is from January to August. She said, �159. I was astounded. I said,


I cannot understand why you say that because of the area and the


postcode. Apart from the address, there was no change to the policy,


no claims, and a clean licence. As she had already paid more than �300


for a full year's cover back in August 2010, Jean could not


understand why moving up the road should mean she should have to pay


�159 extra. But she had no choice. She said, well, if you do not pay


the extra, you car insurance will be cancelled. -- your car insurance.


I said, but I have paid for a year, and she said, if you do not pay the


extra for where you are now, it will be cancelled. I was in shock,


really. Jean's husband, Bob, uses a different insurer for his car and


when he told them he had moved, there was no change to his premium.


Obviously because we were moving to a new house I telephoned my brokers.


Back came the reply that the insurance would be exactly the same,


no increase at all. I was absolutely amazed when Jean told me


that hers had gone up by 150 odd quid. I did feel that Jean was


being taken for a proverbial ride It turns out that at the heart of


all this is a series of simple mistakes, but it took ten months


and this programme getting involved before the mystery was solved. Saga


tell us that when Jean rang them with her new postcode, the agent


she spoke to unfortunately misheard it, and Jean did not pick up on


that when it was read back. As far as Saga is concerned, that is her


But does Jean deserve all the blame? She did later ring Saga


about her postcode again and the correct details did not make it


onto the company's systems that time either. Saga put that down to


an innocent error on their part. In fact, the situation was only


resolved when we got in touch with the company. Since then, Saga has


apologised to Jean, refunded the additional premiums, and given her


a further �100 compensation. So, is there anything you can do to try


and keep a lid on escalating car insurance premiums? Chas Hallett


from "What Car?" magazine has some advice. Of course, there are huge


number of factors insurance companies use when they are


calculating insurance. One of the ways you can save lots of money is


shop around. Do not just automatically renew your insurance.


Get on the internet, get on the phone, because you can save


hundreds of pounds by swapping insurers. Make sure your car is


valued correctly. Lots of insurance companies use bandings, so you


could say your car is worth 9,995, rather than �10,000, and that could


have a big difference on your insurance premium. You could also


make sure your car has all the right security systems on it. They


may be expensive, but things like alarm systems and electronic


trackers can reduce your insurance premium. Make sure you give the


insurance company your correct employment details because your job


and what you do for a living can have a big bearing on the cost of


insurance. Also, consider where your car is kept overnight. If you


have a garage or even a driveway, it can reduce your insurance


premium considerably. The other thing you could do is do not


overestimate the mileage you do for the year. The minimum number of


miles possible is the best for lower insurance premiums. We're


here in Manchester where Rip Off Britain have opened their very


first pop up shop. It has been a weekend of consumer advice from our


team of experts and BBC Learning have been helping people of all


ages improve their maths skills. But one area of our shop which has


been particularly busy is the video booth that we set up for people to


record their gripes and to get everything off their chests. The


biggest cause of complaint we have heard in the gripe box by far is


car insurance. My son is 18 and currently taking lessons. To insure


him on a 1.1 Vauxhall Corsa is going to cost in excess of �5,000.


They have put it up from 370 to 490. My eldest son, who has been having


driving lessons, and we wanted to insure him on our car so we could


take him out for additional driving experience, and we have been quoted


�4,000. It had gone up from �750 to just over 1,000. I had to pay


�2,000 just to insure it. What a rip-off. That is a lot of car


insurance gripes. A real bugbear of yours when it comes to all sorts of


insurance is automatic renewal. Les popped in after he realised that


the automatic renewal quote from his insurer was �150 more expensive


than the same insurance for new customers. I thought, I will just


check and see if the prices are still reasonable, and when I


checked on the website, there was a massive difference in the price


that I was being quoted. So I rang the company to ask them why, why


was there a difference in the cover, was it something that I missed, and


there was nothing. The cover was They draw you in with that


attractive premium. Then they start trying to rash et it up in the


later years. You go on line and shop round, not with your existing


insurer, go on a comparison site and see what you could get. You


will find you can save hundreds each year on your car and home


insurance. All you have to do is pick up the phone and say I've had


a look round and realise I could get the same policy �100 cheaper.


They are often change it because they don't want to lose you. You


have to be prepared to shop round. There is no reward for loyalty.


Stay alert. Thank you for coming in I will use the advice I have been


given. For both the home insurance and for the car insurance, and for


Holiday Inn insurance as well. team of experts have been able to


help a lot of people here today. I hope that you at home have also


been able to pick up useful tips. Now back to car insurance. And we


have already heard how the cost of your premiums can be a bit of a


postcode lottery. There can be plenty of other factors that mean


you could pay a lot more, and they might have nothing at all to do


with how good a driver you are or whether you have had an accident.


It could come down to the whether you have a job. Aside from a home,


a car is one of the biggest investments most of us will ever


make. So it is important to look after it. Living in the heart of


the Peak District, having a car is vital for Martin, and now more than


ever, 12 months ago he lost his job and he has been busy looking for


another one ever since. The car is very important. I need it to pick


my daughter up. She lives eight miles away. I need it to go to the


Jobcentre, 13 miles away. The nearest town is eight miles away.


It is quite rural round here, no big shops. In June, when Martin


needed to renew his car insurance, he called Endsleigh to take them up


on the renewal quote they had sent. He was asked a few questions


including his current employment status. And then came the bombshell.


They said I was unemmind they would have to recalculate the premium.


They went away for a minute and it came back over �200 more than it


would have been if I had been employed, so I was completely, I


was astounded by it. I asked why, and they said, it was something to


do with their underwriters, that was it. The actual quote for


Martin's 1.3 litre car had gone up from just over � 350 to �565. That


is a 62% increase. The former IT manager says it can't be down to


his performance behind the wheel. Well, I've got over nine years no


claims, I've not had an accident in over ten year, I don't drive like


an it yacht. I'm mot a boy racer. I don't have a boy racer's car. It


was the fact I was unemployed. Martin decided to try elsewhere but


was shocked to find that he got the same response from other companies


when he tried to get quotes. found a lot of companies won't


insure unemployed drivers. I rang them up, asked them why, they said


it was they don't insure unemployed people. One was a famous


supermarket chain. They won't insure you. It made me mad because


I buy my shopping there why can't I buy insurance there? Very


frustrated he decided to sigh how Endsleigh's instant online quote


compared with what he had been offered over the phone. He tried


employing as an unemployed driver and was quoted a hefty �945 for the


year. That is �400 higher than his renewal quote. What would they have


charged if he had been working? Let's see, as Martin keys in his


previous employment details. quote is �380 which is ridiculous.


It is �600 less if I am employed than if I was unemployed. I am


astounded. It makes me feel a victim, or discriminated against


that I am unemployed. Martin couldn't understand why not having


a job made such a difference to his insurance. But searching on line


for arpbgs he found various possible explanations from other


drivers who had been in a similar situation. One of the reasons they


gave was that unemployed people have more time on their hands and


they travel more to interview, and another reason was because if you


are unemployed you are more likely to make a false claim to get more


money. It makes you feel like you're a criminal. Why would they


think you might make money out of a claim? I don't like my car gets


scratched. Insurance insiders say many factors are taken into


consideration. The new tyre, brake, perhaps theirs cred it rates isn't


as good. Cred it rating, the better it is the better the deal you get


from your bank. So they are rating factors that are considered by the


insurance company. We asked Endsleigh why Martin's job status


should affect premiums. And they said that though they work with a


range of insurers, they just the intermediary and don't set the


rates. While they take equality very seriously, they say certain


group, such as the unemployed, offer an increased risk,


statistically, and this can be reflected by some insurers and


higher rates. They said they are happy to speak to Martin to find


way forward. But they are too late. The only way he could find an


affordable premium and keep his car on the road was to agree to a �400


excess, with a different insurer. So for Martin, it has been a double


blow for his pocket. Not just losing his job and his income, but


in his eyes, being penalised by his insurance company for doing so. As


far as he is concerned his circumstances may have changed, but


his driving skills have not. If like many of our viewers you that


had to insure your car or get inu insurance for a younger member of


the family the premiums have probably made your eyes water. An


increase of 40% is commonplace and for young drivers they are being


quoted in the thousands. What is going on? I have come to the


Association of British Insurers hopefully to get some answers. I am


joined by Nick Starling the director of general insurance here


at the Association of British Insurers. Nick, car insurance gone


up by on average round 40%, what is going on? Car insurance has indeed


increased by a great deal in recent year, and that is three factor, the


increased instance of bodily injury claims people are making, it has


increased fraud and the problem of uninsured driving. Young people are


getting extortionate Premiers quoted, �12,000 in one case, why


are they so high? Unfortunately, a lot of young people in this country


are poor drivers, they are poorly train and the testing system is


failing them. Sadly, if you are a young male driver in particular,


you are ten times more likely than I am or you are to be killed or


seriously injured in an accident. At least one MP has called Britain


the whiplash capital of Europe. If you are aware that people are


claiming in some cases unjustifiably, why can your


association not actually clampdown on those insurance companies that


are making those claims possible? We can't ourselves clampdown on


what is happening with these claims. We have this compensation culture


which is leading people to think if they have had a minor accident they


can make a claim. We need to put a stop to it and enable premiums to


come down. You will know it is not people saying I think I will make a


claim. It is companies persuading them to do it. There is something


one has to say. If you have been injured, or made ill and it is not


your fault then you need to be helped. The problem is when that


has happened to you, you are a valuable property and lots of


people want to get to you to sell you a replacement vehicle to, get


to you, for an injury claim. We all know what happens and we think that


is that merry-go-rounds that needs to be stopped. In a disfunctional


system people need to behave in dysfunctional ways. What can't the


Association of British Insurers say to members do not get involved in


this side of the business? Stop it. We have argued that you have to ban


referral fees and the Government agrees with that. They are going to


do that. We have mentioned the fact young people are getting huge


quotes for their insurance you, have given me a reason why that is.


Why can we not start to tackle the problem now, because basically what


you are doing is you are not only keeping young people off the road,


but you are obviously setting up a situation where many of them will


think they should then not bother. We want Government to do something


about this, if your programme can help the Government to realise it


has to be done, that would be great, because there are fundamental


problems we believe round the testing and training of young


drivers. We think there should be a structure learning period so you


have a log book so it indicates how many lessons you have had, we think


there should be restrictions after the test. Thank you. Here at Rip


Off Britain we are ready to investigate more of your stories.


Confused over bills? Trying to wade through never ended small print


that leaves you totally confused? might have been stupid for not


reading out our haven't took it in. I could kick myself. Uninsure what


to do when you discover you have lost out and that great deal has


ended up costing you money. thought this cannot be true. It is


totally unsebl -- unacceptable. I was so angry. You might have a


cautionary tale of your own and would be happy to share the


mistakes you have made with us, so others don't do the same. No-one


knows about this so this is very strange to me. I would like to get


this much clearer. You can write to us. Or send us an e-mail. The rip


Angela Rippon, Gloria Hunniford and Julia Somerville investigate why viewers have been left out of pocket. Whether it is rocketing energy prices, unexpected bank charges, or a catch in the small print that has had devastating consequences, they will get answers from the companies responsible. Plus, the team have been on the road, tackling consumer complaints face to face at the Rip Off Britain pop-up shop.

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