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Fair Go: March 30

Published: 5:35PM Wednesday March 30, 2011 Source: Fair Go

Price of privacy

Reporter: Phil Vine

Infatuation stalkers are the worst. That's according to security expert Darren Morton. No means yes and their obsession with their victim becomes like a drug. 

He used to run diplomatic protection for the Prime Minister, now his company protects people being pursued by those who want to do them harm. And one of the worst possible breaches of security he's seen is printing a stalking victim's name and address in the phonebook.

That's what telco Slingshot did last year to a woman who'd been stalked for more than five years by a criminal she came into professional contact with.

The privacy commissioner found that Slingshot had breached her privacy and asked that Slingshot make amends. 

Slingshot agreed to make her house safer, put in a panic button, window locks, fix up the gate and fence. 

But after eight months, lots of toing and froing, none of that's been done. Jodie says the company's been very difficult to deal with.

Slingshot say so has she. It claims that it has taken unique steps to resolve the situation. So what's gone on?


Restricted passenger

Reporter:  Ruwani Perera

Sixteen year-old Vincent King has a restricted driver's licence and drives the 65 kilometre distance from his home in Dargaville to Whangarei's North Tec. 

His 18 year-old step sister Rhiannon Hall-King also attends North Tec campus, but doesn't have a driver's licence.

Vincent thought that under transport rule exemptions he could apply to the New Zealand Transport Agency to get an exemption to take Rhiannon as a passenger in his car.

Restricted drivers cannot normally carry passengers, unless they have a supervisor with them or with someone who's held a full New Zealand licence for the same licence class for at least two years.  But there are exemptions:

The only passengers you can carry without a supervisor are:

- your spouse, or person you live with as if you were married or with whom you are joined in civil union

- children who live with you and are under the care of you or your spouse (that is, you or your spouse are their parent or guardian)

- relatives who live with you and who are on a social security benefit (domestic purposes, widow's, invalid's, unemployment or sickness)

Vincent thought he could apply under the last category - with Rhiannon being a student on a student allowance - they thought they would qualify.

New Zealand Transport Agency declined Vincent's request for exemption based on his limited driving experience and the significant distance he travels. 

The NZTA saw these factors as both an increase in the risk of Vincent's safety and his passenger, and that of the other road users.  They said they would not grant an exemption to overcome inconvenience or transportation costs.

But Vincent's mum Sonja King says Vincent would be even more careful than normal having his step sister as a passenger because "they are two siblings, they would be thinking of each other's health and wellbeing so they wouldn't be out being silly on the roads.  He drives the distance he is driving anyway so be it whether he is in the car by himself or with Rhiannon."


Jewellery and insurance

Reporter: Hannah Wallis

Gold prices have gone gang busters in the last few years - and if you've got precious gold jewellery  - time to check your insurance.

People are getting caught out with under-valued and under-insured jewellery by choosing the wrong sort of cover. 

With one type of cover, you can list your items specifically - you'll need to have them properly valued, which should include a full description including weight and carat and a good photo.

Then have them individually itemised on your policy, at that value. In case or loss or theft, you will be paid out for the amount insured, that is, the actual value.

Or, you can chose to have unlisted, unspecified jewellery on your policy, in which case you will probably have a maximum amount you can claim, for instance, a generous policy might pay out $3500 for any one piece and $15,000 for any collection of jewellery which is lost, stolen or damaged - but the limit might be as little as $1000 for a single item.
 
Under this type of cover, if you decided not to specify some items on your policy because, three or five years ago they were worth less than $1000 - and your limit is $1000 per piece - you may well find they are now worth much, much more than that - which means you will lose out big time if you have to claim on them.

You will also have to rely on the valuation of the insurance company for your payout. Even if that valuation comes in at say, $2000 or $3000, they are only obliged to pay out the $1000.

There is some flexibility between insurance companies about this, though, but it pays to check your jewellery clauses in the policy, and if in doubt, ring the company.

AA Insurance, who features in Fair Go's story tonight, also suggests the following:
 
When you buy, or are lucky enough to be given expensive jewellery, make sure you keep any receipts or valuations that you are given at the time. This will be very helpful to have as 'proof of purchase' if you need to make a claim, and to help your insurance company work out what the replacement value of the jewellery should be. Photographs of the jewellery and of you wearing the jewellery are also good to have.

Ensure your jewellery is covered for a replacement value (ie what it would cost to replace it or buy a new item) rather than what it cost you. One of the reasons this is important is because of the increase in the value of gold, and so it can cost more to buy the same item you bought a couple of years ago.

Consider cataloguing your jewellery - you can take photos, scan receipts etc and email the information to yourself or keep in a secure location - not with the jewellery.

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