Insurance Details

Easy, simple and saving you the hassle.

We are pleased to explain our comprehensive Theft and accidental damage insurance for all DSA (Disabled Students' Allowance) computers, software and peripherals.

Theft and accidental damage insurance is included as standard on all DSA systems that we supply. (Please note that this is also available for non-DSA purchases but needs to be added to the order.) The length of the insurance term is the same as the computer warranty, which in most cases will be the same as the length of the student’s course. You can specify from 1 to 4 years' cover for Windows or Macintosh computers.

We use the same company for insurance that we use for our course-long extended warranties. The main reason for automatically insuring all systems is to offer you quicker and easier support, and to save time arguing responsibility, assessing damage, getting quotes and organising payment.

What does the Department for Education and Skills say about insuring DSA equipment?

Paragraph 26 from the DfES Guidance to Local Authorities states:

It would be reasonable for any insurance or extended warranty costs and for any repair and modification costs arising from the ownership of such equipment purchased under the DSA to be set against this allowance. Where students do not take out insurance and equipment is stolen, any replacement of the equipment is at the students’ expense. The cost of replacement equipment should not be met by the DSA in such circumstances. Therefore, LEAs are advised to recommend to students that insurance cover is taken out for their DSA equipment. The insurance premiums can be paid from the DSA.

Read the full document.

What does buying insurance from us mean for the student?

  • Peace of mind - if any of the kit we supply does not work for practically any reason, it is covered and we can fix it at no extra cost to the student. And as the DfES makes clear, the student will be responsible for the cost of any replacement or repairs if insurance is not taken out (see preceding paragraph).
  • Quicker turn around - because payment is covered by either the warranty or the insurance we can speed up the repair or replacement process.
  • Your computer doesn't get caught in the middle whilst the insurance company argues that it is a warranty issue (”so go to the manufacturer”) and the manufacturer argues it is accidental damage (”so go to the insurer”).
  • Guaranteed cover - we arrange the cover at the time of purchase so there are no forms to lose and no complex process of getting quotes and renewals every year. Also, there will be no risk of you not renewing your insurance and ending up with no equipment.

There are still some inevitable exclusions, such as leaving a computer visible in a car (even if locked).
Read:

Note that the insurance covers sudden and unforeseen causes, not things that happen gradually as a result of rough handling. The manufacturer can still argue that these are more than fair wear and tear so not covered by the warranty. So:

  • Be gentle plugging and unplugging cables, connectors and catches -- power supply, USB connectors, PC cards etc;
  • Don’t press your computer against the wall if it puts stress on any connectors;
  • Be gentle opening and closing the lid and the CD drive;
  • And putting it into its bag.
  • In short, BE KIND to your computer and it should serve you well.
  • If you let other people use your computer, make sure they are as gentle with it as you are.

If you are careful like this then any damage will always be accidental or covered by warranty.

What does buying insurance from us mean for the Local Authority?

  • Better value - because we are buying in bulk we can purchase insurance far cheaper than any individual and we are passing that saving on to the customer. It can cost up to 100 per year to insure a laptop individually and this does not cover the other bits of equipment such as voice recorders and PDAs; we now cover everything for half of that price.
  • Less paperwork - bundling all-risk insurance with all DSA systems means less paperwork for all concerned. Awards officers can be confident that the student is covered from day one until the end of their course.
  • Simple pricing - we offer easy-to-understand pricing across the board: Notebook cover is £50 per annum and desktop cover is £34 per annum.
  • Better service - because we control both the warranty and insurance cover on ITS and Toshiba computers, we can reduce turnaround time and improve service to the student.
  • Good cover - we believe that the cover we now offer is as comprehensive as we have seen (based partly on our insurer’s good history with our customers).

There’s less chance of hassle

We only charge the insurance company for replacement equipment at our cost - there's no profit. So:

  • The insurance company trusts our judgement - they know we're not gaining directly from it;
  • Both registration and claims take much less hassle and paperwork as they are all a routine part of our normal workflow;
  • The premiums are lower because there is no profit element in any eventual repairs or replacement;
  • We can usually reinstall the software we originally supplied, without having to buy new;
  • Both we and the customer benefit since we get the problem solved as efficiently as possible, saving the student’s time, and also freeing up our support team to help with other queries.

Sometimes, it is true, part of the risk will be double covered, as the equipment may also be partly covered by an existing home insurance policy. But:

  • What are the terms and exclusions of this insurance? It is highly unlikely to cover the risk better than ours. Compare it to our cover (PDF).
  • Can you be sure it will be renewed?
  • What equipment will be provided in the event of a claim? Will it be whatever the insurance company's tied supplier thinks equivalent? Or will it be another system fully matching the original DSA specification?
  • Will the insurance company be keen to find any excuse not to pay up? Our insurance company values our bulk business and so has an interest in keeping us happy by trusting our judgment.
  • There is no way that an Assessor, DO (Disability Officer) or a Funding Body/Local Authority can know the answer to these questions in advance. A wrong answer for a single student entails a totally disproportionate cost for all stakeholders in the DSA process. We strongly believe that you should never have to risk having to ask these questions. We strongly believe our automatic insurance represents your Best Value in supporting your disabled students.

We try hard to give “better than expected” support to DSA students, and our insurance and warranty provision makes this possible. At the end of the day, any obstructions add to the costs and hassle of all DSA stakeholders - DO, Assessor, Funding Body/Local Authority, Suppliers and - above all - the student. We believe our insurance policy is a major improvement to the DSA process.