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'Wife's dementia meant we had to cancel cruise – now Aviva won't pay the £2.3k claim'

Jessica Gorst-Williams
A reader who cancelled a cruise was denied a payout

I am writing belatedly about a £2,300 insurance claim that was disallowed over three months ago, although a small compensation payment of £118 was paid by the underwriters.

This delay came about because my wife has dementia and has recently been admitted to a care home. This means I have had more pressing matters to attend to. 

As my wife’s medical condition worsened, I had to cancel a cruise. At the time of booking, medical advice was that it would be OK for her to travel. However, six months later, it wasn’t and we had to cancel it. 

When we were taking out the travel insurance I had many phone conversations with TSB travel claims, which is run by Aviva.

It advised that my wife’s dementia could not be covered and she should take out separate cover. This was done with another insurer at a cost of £380.

At no time was it explained to me that I would not be covered by Aviva if a claim was made due to my wife’s dementia as a person travelling with her.

DC, Hants

Your cover came from an added value policy on your TSB bank account, underwritten by Aviva.

Aviva was in full knowledge of all the facts and should have alerted you that you too should go elsewhere, as your wife had done for her insurance, rather than relying on the bank’s travel cover.

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When the time came to claim, your wife’s separate policy paid up in respect of her cancellation, but your claim on the bank’s policy was turned down.

Further to my involvement, Aviva listened to the original call you made about the cover and concluded that the exclusion had not been fully explained to you.

It is now, after all, paying £2,300 for your cancellation. Aviva has also sent £100 for goodwill.