Every day in our lives, we are exposed to hazards and risks. Examples of risks are – getting into an accident while driving, being knocked down by a car while walking on the road, an accident at work, sustaining injury while engaged in sports or slipping on a wet floor at home.

We do our very best to ensure that whatever we do or wherever we go, we are not exposed to danger, but accidents still and will happen, and when it happens, it is usually at the least expected of times.

Although it is impossible to bring back the life of a loved one, you can lessen the financial burden suffered as a consequence of an unfortunate incident by transferring your risks to the professional risk takers – insurers.

Thus, the insurance industry can be regarded as providing a service to society in terms of financial protection in the event of a loss.

How does insurance work ?

Insurance companies, with years of practical experience and statistics behind them, are able to calculate with relative accuracy the probability of certain types of events occurring, and also the financial consequences of such happenings. Effectively, what insurers do is collect an amount of money (called premium) from people (the insured) who wish to share risks among each other.

The premiums paid are pooled, and if any insured is unlucky enough to suffer a loss covered in the insurance policy, then funds from the pool will be used to pay his claim. Insurance works on the principle of restoring the insured to the same financial position as he had enjoyed before the loss. This is known as the principle of indemnity. A simple example is, a house is insured against fire for B$250,000. In the event of the house being completely destroyed in a fire, the insurance company will pay to the insured the amount of B$250,000 as claims settlements (subject to the terms and conditions of the policy).

If you know that by paying a small amount as premium each year, you will be indemnified if an unexpected event occurs, you will be relieved of the worry of what could happen to you or to your family or business in a disaster. This way, you will not have to keep your capital or funds locked away in a catastrophe reserve fund, and you will have more funds available to spend.

Types of Insurance

The insurance industry can be divided into 2 broad sectors – Life and Non-Life. Non-Life is also known as general insurance.

Life insurance covers agreed events as stipulated in the insurance policy on a human life. Such policies include life and endowment policies, annuities, health insurance and investment-linked policies.

Non-Life insurance can be taken as all other forms of insurance business, which are not covered under life insurance business. These include property e.g. motor vehicles, ship, building, stock-in-trade, and legal liability caused by products or goods sold and death or injury to a person by accidents, and many more.

National insurance is a conventional Non-Life insurer.

How do I go about getting insurance ?

If you want to buy some insurance protection, you can either contact us directly or use an intermediary such a broker or agent to act for you. Brokers and agents are paid commissions by us on the business they introduce; hence their services to the clients are free.

Who regulates the Brunei insurance market ?

The Brunei insurance market is regulated and supervised by Autoriti Monetari Brunei Darussalam (AMBD). They ensure that insurers are properly managed and that policyholders are therefore properly protected. All general insurance companies operating in the country also belong to the Brunei Insurance and Takaful Association (BITA), which works closely with the Government regulators in ensuring that members meet the necessary regulatory requirements.

  • Be calm and do not panic.
  • If there are injuries to any persons, call 991 for assistance.
  • If there are no injuries, move your vehicle to a safe area away from traffic, where possible.
  • Note the names and addresses of the other driver(s) involved.
  • Note the model and vehicle registration number of the vehicle(s) involved.
  • Note names and addresses of witnesses, if any.
  • Sketch a simple diagram of the accident scene and the position of each vehicle right before and after the accident (Photos of the accident scene, if available, can be very helpful).
  • Exchange information on the names of your respective insurance companies.
  • Do not discuss on whose fault it was. This may complicate handling of your claims.
  • If your vehicle needs to be towed, ensure that the vehicle will be sent to the correct workshop. Call your insurance company or its accident hotline number for the appropriate workshop.
  • Report the accident to the police promptly.
  • Inform your insurance company promptly even if you do not intend to make a claim. The third party involved in the accident may make a claim against your insurance company which would cause you to lose your NCD.
  • Complete the claims form in full and include any additional relevant information. If in doubt, ask your insurance company for advice.