If you have a property, contents or motor insurance policy in NSW, you have probably paid an Emergency Services Levy (ESL) with your insurance policy to help fund the fire and emergency services.
Insurance companies selling certain types of general insurance policies are required to provide the NSW Government with funding for the fire and emergency services each financial year. In the financial year 2016-17 insurers were required to contribute $785 million towards the funding of the fire and emergency services in NSW. Services funded are Fire and Rescue NSW, NSW Rural Fire Service, and NSW State Emergency Services.
Insurers generally reclaim their contribution amount paid from their customers by charging an Emergency Services Levy (ESL) on policy premiums in relevant insurance classes.
The amount of ESL charged is set by each insurance company, which means that different companies may charge different rates of ESL for similar insurance policies.
Policies subject to ESL
ESL may be charged on certain types of general insurance policy, including house and contents insurance policies, where it must be itemised separately on your policy documents.
A small amount of ESL is also included in motor insurance policies
Insurance categories which may include ESL
1. Commercial Property & ISR
2. Residential building and or contents insurance (household insurance)
3. Personal combined on Jewellery & clothing, personal effects and works of art
4. Motor vehicle and motor cycle
5. Marine & baggage
6. Combined fire & hail on growing crops & Live stock