Questions Of Cash: 'I wouldn't have been able to claim on policy'

Q. I've paid into an Aviva Permanent Health Insurance policy for 20 years. I've just found out that I would have been ineligible for any benefits had I made a claim. I am a teacher and under the conditions of service I would go onto half pay after six months' illness. Unknown to me, my policy would have knocked this sum off any benefit I would have got from Aviva. My premiums did not take this into account.I have asked Avivato reimburse theoverpaid premiums, but it has refused. MB, by email.

A. You paid a total £4,025 into the policy since you opened it in 1990. Although you say that you were ineligible for any benefits, this is untrue: you would have received most of the benefits you signed up for. Aviva has now gone back through the 21 years of the records of your contributions, calculating the premiums that you should have paid for the benefits that you were entitled to draw. On this basis, you overpaid by £1,065. This amount will be refunded to you, less any premiums due at the time of the payment.

Q. In 2009 my friend booked flights from Belfast to Liverpool to attend an Everton match in May last year. After the game, we went to Liverpool Airport to be told that the flight was cancelled because of problems with the Icelandic ash cloud. We were rebooked for the following day, on the first available flight, and travelled home that day. We then booked a room in the Hilton hotel across the road, which easyJet staff promised would be covered by the airline. But easyJet has refused to cover the cost of the room, £91.45, on the basis that it wrongly claims that the room was pre-booked. I feel as if I have been accused of fraud. JM, Belfast.

A. You referred this matter to us in October and we subsequently made several unsuccessful attempts to obtain an answer from easyJet. We have only now had a response explaining that it made a full repayment to you in October, soon after we referred the matter to the airline. You have now confirmed that this is correct. EasyJet apologises for "the extended processing time" in making the payment.

Q. Last November I phoned Which? to request the free Which? guide to digital television – which turned out to be well out of date – and I was persuaded to take three issues of the magazine for £3. After the third issue was delivered, on 1 February, I phoned Which? and cancelled my subscription via their auto-cancellation service. Later my credit card statement showed that Which? had taken £9.75 on 3 February for the next issue. I phoned to complain, but to no avail. I had been told that I could cancel at any time, but the letter from Which? said that the £9.75 would betaken from my card on 1 February and it couldn't refund my £9.75. Although it has taken my dosh for the next month, the auto cancellation appears to block my access to its web pages. You don't expect anorganisation championing consumer rights to act in this way.CD, Bristol.

A. Which? has listened to the initial conversation between you and its customer services centre. This record shows that you were told that you would need to cancel by 31 January to prevent the first payment being taken on 1 February. Lesley Maslen, head of customer service at Which?, says: "Unfortunately, [the reader] cancelled his subscription late, when the payment for the following month was already being processed. We recognise this was an honest mistake and are refunding his money. We're also revising the text in our confirmation letter to ensure there is absolutely no room for confusion for new members in future."

Q. I booked online at Radisson for a hotel room at Dublin airport for my partner when his flight was badly delayed. I accidentally pressed the booking confirmation key on the website four times and booked four rooms instead of one. I only noticed the next morning, as I had logged off after the first confirmation email arrived. I phoned the hotel, but the staff declined to credit the cost of the extra three rooms – even though they were not used. MW, Derry.

A. The additional three room bookings would have cost an additional €375. Radisson has waived this charge because of the confusion.

Q. In January I phoned the Palace Theatre to purchase two tickets for that evening's Priscilla Queen of the Desert performance. I was told that the only seats available were £20 or £65 and that the £20 seats had a restricted view. When I asked what this meant, I was told that the restriction was "when some things were happening on the far left of the stage". I was surprised and disappointed to discover that this restriction applied to the whole of the front of the stage and therefore a large part of the "action" and set pieces. CA, London.

A. Anna Charles, theatre manager at the Palace Theatre, says: "I accept that the information given out by the call centre operator could have been more comprehensive, and in order to provide more detailed information on the nature of this restriction in future the producer will be creating a briefing sheet for use by call centre operators. However, given that these tickets were £20 each, compared to the top price of £67.75, and clearly state that there is a restricted view, I would not agree that they were mis-sold."

Questions of Cash cannot give individual advice. But if you have a financial dilemma, we'll do our best to help. Please email us at: questionsofcash@

Independent Partners; request a free guide on NISAs from Hargreaves Lansdown

peopleFrankie Boyle responds to referendum result in characteristically offensive style
Arts and Entertainment
'New Tricks' star Dennis Waterman is departing from the show after he completes filming on two more episodes
tvHe is only remaining member of original cast
Arts and Entertainment
tvHighs and lows of the cast's careers since 2004
New Articles
Life and Style
Couples have been having sex less in 2014, according to a new survey
Arts and Entertainment
musicBiographer Hunter Davies has collected nearly a hundred original manuscripts
Finacial products from our partners
Property search
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Money & Business

    Senior BA - Motor and Home Insurance

    £400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: **URGENT CONTRACT ROLE**...

    Market Risk & Control Manager

    Up to £100k or £450p/d: Saxton Leigh: My client is a leading commodities tradi...

    SQL Developer - Watford/NW London - £320 - £330 p/d - 6 months

    £320 - £330 per day: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group have been engaged by a l...

    Head of Audit

    To £75,000 + Pension + Benefits + Bonus: Saxton Leigh: My client is looking f...

    Day In a Page

    Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

    Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

    Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
    Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

    Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

    The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
    The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

    Scrambled eggs and LSD

    Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
    'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

    'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

    Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
    Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

    New leading ladies of dance fight back

    How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
    Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

    A shot in the dark

    Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
    His life, the universe and everything

    His life, the universe and everything

    New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
    Reach for the skies

    Reach for the skies

    From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
    These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

    12 best hotel spas in the UK

    Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
    These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

    Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

    Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
    Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

    Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

    His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam