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A free and independent advisory service to assist North Canterbury residents with quake-related insurance claims is being extended, Minister supporting Greater Christchurch Regeneration Nicky Wagner and Kaikoura MP Stuart Smith say.

The announcement follows the success of a pilot programme — set up in April — to help manage claims relating to the magnitude 7.8 earthquake on 14 November 2016.

“The Government recognises that many people in Hurunui, Kaikoura, and Marlborough may still be struggling with the complexities of their insurance claims,” Ms Wager says.

“It’s therefore important that the advisory service remains available. It will be extended to December 2017 and rolled into the Residential Advisory Service (RAS), which has successfully assisted thousands of Christchurch residents with their insurance claims following the 2010 and 2011 quakes.”

Mr Smith says Community Law will continue to act as the independent advisor to home owners in North Canterbury who require advice on their insurance or EQC settlements.  

“This is a free, one-on-one and independent legal advisory service and I encourage home owners to contact RAS before engaging with other costly services offered in the area,” Mr Smith says.

“We know people are under a lot of stress and that’s why we continue to be very focused on providing ongoing support.”

Home owners can get in touch via their local authority or directly on 0800 777 299.

Since its launch in 2013, RAS has provided advice to about 17,000 Christchurch residents.

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