When home insurance is not insured

Hello everyone

I thought I would share my recent conversation with Allianz with you.

Earlier today my husband recieved a email from our insurance company wanting to know where we pay our tax!

Pourquoi? We asked. Answer: because this might affect your house insurance? We said we were even more confused and would come into the office to discuss further.

Now we are not best pleased with our recent house insurance quote, given that it has double in price, so we went along to Allianz in Nontron this afternoon.

This is what we were told: if we pay your income tax in another country, other than France including any EU

state, Allianz will consider your home as a second home regardless of how long you spend in the country.

We naturally questioned this ( for clarity we pay our taxes in France) and asked to see this in writing.

Bottom line is check with your insurers that there not using the same, bizarre, condition.

Anyone else encountered this?

My hubby pays tax here in France. He does commute to the UK for work for a week or two at a time. Obviously the kids and I stay here as this is our only home (we do not have a second home elsewhere) Allianz said the insurance would be cheaper if it was a second home and this was why they asked the question as a means of reducing our insurance!
They gave us an example of a Dutch family that receive their pension from holland and pay tax in holland but live in France 10 months of the year, they are classed as second home owners and unfortunately have just made a claim on their insurance only to find this argument and the insurance refusing to cough up!

I understand their point (a little) if a second home is a higher risk due to it being unoccupied / unsupervised for periods of time - is that what they've based the increase in your premiums on? That they assumed it was a holiday home? In which case I would hope they immediately revised their figures. Out of curiosity would you still receive the same cover for as a 'regular' house or are they excluding certain elements albeit perhaps charging more for the privilege? I hope you have it sorted out now anyway, that you are fully insured and they also offer to reduce the premiums - a lot.

Sorry, you don't state specifically that your husband pays tax in the UK - I just assumed. Bad!

But what I said applies equally to other countries having a dual tax treaty with France..

Then somebody is confusing where your husband "pays" his tax and where he "declares" it.

To be considered resident at an address in France you must declare your taxes in France at that address.

For a person living in France, certain income is taxed in the UK (for example government pensions) and other income (e.g. private pensions, non-government salaries) is taxed in France.

However, to be considered resident at your address in France, all income (government and private) must be declared in France. There is a dual taxation treaty, so any income that has, by law, to be taxed in the UK will not be taxed again in France.

So the question is - do you fill out a French tax return from the address you are trying to insure? If not, you cannot be considered tax resident there. If you have filled out a French tax return (in May 2013 for your 2012 income) and can prove that to your insurance company, then the address concerned is your main residence and not a second home and it is they who are wrong.

I hope this explains it?

Apologies if I wasn’t clear enough in my first post. The issue here isn’t one of dual residency, or if I we have more than one home, or how long we spend in France. Allianz are saying that if my husband lives in France full time but pays income tax in a country outside France, our (only home) becomes our second home.

Fundamentally, their policy is at odds to France’s stance on permanent residency.

that's how I see it too - tax/main residence etc.

I think what Allianz are saying is correct and is the standard criteria used for determining a "maison principale". The address you give when declaring your taxes is considered your main residence and any other address is therefore a second home, wherever it may be in the world. If you spend more than half the year in any one country, that is where you are considered tax resident.

I don't see it as a bizarre condition.

Incidentally,from my experience in my particular area of Normandy, where insurance policies are concerned, as most French policies combine buildings and contents it does not make an awful lot of difference to the premiums - you pay more for certain risks for a second home, as it is left unoccupied for longer, but less for the value of contents insured (as you generally don't have as much contents value as your main home). One tends to outweigh the other.

Sorry, having just reread my post, my iPad has made certain assumptions which I need to now clarify; Allianz doesn’t pay our taxes!