A Daily Mail features writer has claimed that he was refused home insurance because he was a “newspaper journalist”.
Guy Adams tried to take out home insurance with NFU Mutual but was told he was refused because “they class journalists as public figures now” and “sometimes refuse to cover MPs for the same reason”.
NFU admitted it has refused applications from journalists before.
However a spokesperson said they “do not dismiss every application for home insurance made by journalists” and treat each application on a “case-by-case basis, taking into account a number of individual factors”.
Adams said: “I needed to get new home insurance so I phoned up NFU. I spent 45 minutes telling them about my life, my house and what types of bricks it was built on and all the rest of it.
“They came back and said, ‘we’re very sorry but our underwriters have refused to insure us because you’re a newspaper journalist’.”
He added: “On one level you think, well that’s their right, as a private company, but on another level it seems like an extraordinary type of discrimination.
“Journalists do an important job and we deserve to be allowed to insure our homes just as much as the next person. If other insurers follow suit we’d all be in a right old pickle.”
A spokesperson for NFU Mutual said: “In the past, some members of the media have been refused insurance cover with NFU Mutual. Each case is weighed up on the individual basis of the risk to us.
“Insurers calculate policies based on a number of individual factors such as age, profession and address as part of the assessment.
“Journalism is a complex profession to assess in this respect as for some it will be predominantly a desk job, while others may find themselves travelling and being away from home for long periods of time.
“As a result, when a journalist asks us to quote for their home or car insurance, we refer the case to our underwriters.
“From that point, whether we decide to offer insurance or not will depend on a range of factors and not just a person’s profession.”
Adams contacted the insurance provider on Twitter and, although he was told he would be called to discuss the situation, no further action was taken.
“It seems that it is the policy of NFU Mutual to refuse to provide any home insurance for all journalists on the basis that they think we’re high risk,” said Adams.
“In a sense it’s true, we do all get a lot of abuse these days, most of it is through social media and it’s fine, or at least it doesn’t pose a physical threat to us, but NFU seem to think that we’re all at risk.”
Although Adams admits he has had critical feedback of his articles on social media, he has never received any physical threats.
He has since taken out an insurance policy with Marks and Spencer.