Fire Service Levy in New South Wales Set to Rise Again

I have been on long standing campaigner for the removal of Fire Service Levies from insurance. I genuinely believe it is a disincentive for home and business owners to insure adequately and, in some cases, not to have insurance at all. This of course has a terrible effect on the family in the case of home and contents owners and on the shareholders, employees and other stakeholders in the case of business. During the after-effects of natural disasters, it puts pressure on government to assist those with inadequate insurance and it adversely effects the local economy and the overall recovery process.

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My view is that all of us in the community benefit from well-funded, highly trained and equipped emergency services. Therefore, all of us should bear the cost of this and not just those who insure.

It is, therefore, disappointing that instead of the Fire Service Levy being removed from insurance policies, it has been necessary for some insurers to increase the levy in that state. The newly published rates for New South Wales from QBE Insurance are

Class of Insurance NSW
Fire / ISR / Consequential Loss 34% (previously 31.5%)
Construction Risk 34% (previously 31.5%)
Householders & House owners 19.5% (previously 17.5%)
Motor 1.0% (previously 1.0%)

It must be frustrating to home and business owners alike in New South Wales that the levy has been moved off insurance in all other main land states and territories with only Tasmania using this dark ages method of funding and then only on business insurance.

When you factor in the fact that GST and State Government Stamp Duty are compound taxes on top of the Fire Service Levy, the full effect of the disincentive and the cost borne by those prudent enough to insure becomes very apparent.

Wake up New South Wales and follow through on your initiative to remove this unfair and counter-productive tax!

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