NCHITO and Nchito Advocates has dragged Nico Insurance Zambia Limited to the Lusaka High Court demanding immediate reimbursement of all costs incurred by it when it rented a car for the period its insured vehicle was impaired.
The law firm has submitted that the insurance company had been unresponsive when it bore the sole responsibility of paying for the car rental for 21 days and taking steps to ensure that the firm’s Toyota Land Cruiser, which was involved in an accident was repaired within that time.
Nchito and Nchito Advocates want the court to assess the damages for inconvenience caused by breach of contract of insurance, costs and other reliefs the Court may deem fit.
In a statement of claim filed in the Lusaka High Court, Nchito and Nchito Advocates suing as a firm, stated that in 2020, it obtained various insurance covers from Nico Insurance Zambia Limited, that included comprehensive motor vehicle cover.
The law firm stated that on December 5, last year, one of the insured vehicles, a Land Cruiser, was involved in a road traffic accident along Alick Nkhata Road in Lusaka and the necessary police report and car repair quotations were submitted to Nico Insurance Zambia Limited on or before December 18, 2020.
It stated that on December 24, 2020, Nico Insurance Zambia Limited gave the firm authorisation to hire a motor vehicle, which the firm would use for a 21-day-period, within which it was expected that the car repairs would have been completed.
The law firm further stated that it hired a motor vehicle at the rate of K1,000 per day, which was the rate permitted by Nico Insurance Zambia Limited.
“Nico Insurance Zambia Limited informed the law firm that it had to obtain quotations from a car repairer that was not going on industrial break so that the 21-day rental period was properly utilised. To this end, the law firm obtained a quotation from Status Motors and submitted the same to Nico Insurance Zambia Limited on December 28, 2020,” read the claim.
“The defendant, who was supposed to bear and agreed to bear the expense resulting from the car rental for a period of 21 days covered by the contract of insurance between the parties, was unresponsive on the matter when requested resulting in the plaintiff to suffer the cost of the car rental.”
Nchito and Nchito Advocates stated that due to Nico Insurance Zambia’s “leisurely approach” to having the insured car repaired, the car was only collected for repairs on January 18, 2021, despite daily reminders being made by the law firm to the said insurance company, this includes a letter of demand dated January 18, 2021.
It stated that as a direct and singular consequence of the defendant’s delay, the 21-day period for the car rental has since elapsed and the firm has had no other alternative, but to continue renting the car for a further 19 days.
“The defendant’s actions have resulted in a higher rental bill having to be borne by the plaintiff because the defendant, who bore the sole responsibility of paying for the car rental for 21 days and taking steps to ensure that the Land Cruiser was repaired within that time, has been unresponsive and any responses received from them has come only after constant nudges from the plaintiff,” read the claim.
The firm lamented that as a result, it has been extremely inconvenienced by the defendant’s delay and has been caused to bear unnecessary expenses that could have been avoided had Nico Insurance not neglected to perform its obligations for which premiums were paid.