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Saturday, 17 January 2015

Joe Hockey declares Martin Place siege a terror incident for insurance purposes

Declaration ... Joe Hockey has declared the Martin Place siege a terror incident. Picture
Declaration ... Joe Hockey has declared the Martin Place siege a terror incident. Picture: Gordon McComiskie/News Corp. 
JOE HOCKEY has declared the Martin Place Siege a terror incident, to ensure affected businesses can’t be denied insurance claims.
“I have today declared the siege a “terrorist incident” for the purposes of the Terrorism Insurance Act,” the Treasurer said in a statement.
“The Government has taken this action to ensure businesses that suffered damages from the incident will not be denied claims due to terrorism exclusions in their insurance policies.”
The declaration means insurance companies will be prevented from refusing claims on the basis that their policies exclude losses from acts of terrorism.
Responsibly ... Joe Hockey has praised insurers for their actions following the Martin Pl
Responsibly ... Joe Hockey has praised insurers for their actions following the Martin Place siege. Picture: Kym Smith/News Corp.
But the Treasurer did note that the three insurers that have registered claims to date have already stated they will not apply terrorism exclusion clauses, according to advice from the Australian Reinsurance Pool Corporation (ARPC).
“I am pleased to see these companies acting so responsibly at this difficult time,” he said.
“Individual insurers have different payment thresholds before they can claim from the ARPC, depending on their size.
“ ARPC has reported the current estimate for the total insured is just over $600,000.
“Losses from this incident are well short of the limit at which the Commonwealth may become liable for payments.”
Aftermath ... SES members removed floral tributes to Tori Johnson and Katrina Dawson who
Aftermath ... SES members removed floral tributes to Tori Johnson and Katrina Dawson who lost their lives in the Martin place siege. Picture: Ross Schultz/News Corp.
Mr Hockey said he consulted with the Attorney General and the Insurance Council of Australia prior to making the decision.
A review into the siege is currently underway by the federal and state government.
“At the same time, our law enforcement and security agencies continue their work to prevent and disrupt any individuals who may seek to do us harm,” Mr Hockey added.
Originally published as Sydney siege declared a terror incident

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