Farmer’s shock insurance policy discovery after lambs stolen
ANAKIE sheep and grain farmer Shane Trotter was “shocked” to discover his insurance policy did not cover livestock theft.
About three weeks ago thieves cut the chain on a padlocked gate of his farm and took 148 lambs that were ready to be sold.
The lambs were estimated to be worth $150 each, or $22,200.
The theft was reported to police.
“But they didn’t even come out, they just wrote a report from their office,” Mr Trotter said.
Compounding this, when Mr Trotter submitted a claim with his insurer, CGU, he was “shocked” to find out livestock were not covered under his farm policy for theft.
He now expects to get $5000 in “goodwill” coverage.
“We will lose $17,000, which I’d budgeted to pay for new machinery,” he said.
Mr Trotter said he had since looked at other insurers’ policies but said they were “very expensive”.
He is now calling on insurers to make it clearer to farmers that many policies exclude livestock theft.
He wants the government to put more resources into stock theft policing, and to introduce harsher penalties for offenders.
He said the government should also change from the current EID sheep tags to microchips inserted under the skin of stock, to deter thieves.
He said current EID tags were “useless” as they could be easily cut off and replaced.
“I also want to warn people to check their policies, check the fine print, so they don’t get a shock like I did.”
— Kate Dowler
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CHECK THE FINE PRINT: Shane Trotter and his father Graham had 148 head of sheep stolen.