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Defective Building Materials

Dáil Éireann Debate, Thursday - 27 May 2021

Thursday, 27 May 2021

Questions (139)

Neale Richmond


139. Deputy Neale Richmond asked the Minister for Finance the steps that have been taken to ensure that homeowners of properties with defects requiring remediation can access home insurance; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [29023/21]

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Written answers (Question to Finance)

At the outset, it is important to note that neither I, nor the Central Bank of Ireland, can intervene in the provision or pricing of insurance products or have the power to direct insurance companies to provide cover to specific individuals or businesses, including those referenced in the question. This position is reinforced by the EU framework for insurance (the Solvency II Directive). Consequently, I am not in a position to direct companies as to what terms and conditions apply in relation to cover.

That being said, the Deputy will be aware of the Government’s commitment to insurance reform. The Action Plan for Insurance Reform sets out 66 actions across several policy areas, which will work to improving the cost and availability of insurance for consumers, businesses and community groups.

In relation to specific measures for homeowners of properties with defects, this is a matter for my colleague, the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage. I have been advised by the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage that the Independent Working Group on Defective Housing has been established. With regard to the working group’s deliberations, the group will seek to engage with a range of interested parties, including homeowners, public representatives, local authorities, product manufacturers, building professionals and industry stakeholders, among others to examine the issue of defects in housing and report to the Minister for Housing on the matter.