Can I make a claim?

You can make a claim if VMIA is the insurer and your building or renovating project has incomplete or defective works as:

  • your builder has died, disappeared or become insolvent; or
  • for policies issued on or after 1 July 2015, your builder has failed to comply with a Tribunal or Court Order in the way described in the policy wording [PDF, 169KB]

If you think your builder has died, disappeared or become insolvent, you will first need to know how your builder is trading 


A Sole Trader will just list their name eg. John Smith

You can make a claim if your builder has:

  • Died - the builder is deceased
  • Disappeared - the builder cannot be located after having made due searches and enquiries; or
  • Become insolvent - the builder is bankrupt.
You can search the Bankruptcy register to determine if a sole trader builder is bankrupt. Please note a fee may apply.
A Partnership will usually have two or more names eg. John & Mary Smith

You can make a claim if ALL of the partners in the partnership have either:

  • Died – the partner is deceased;
  • Disappeared – the partner cannot be located after having made due searches and enquiries; or
  • Become insolvent – the partner is bankrupt.
You can search the Bankruptcy register to determine if any of the partners is bankrupt. Please note a fee may apply.

Note: If there are any partners in the partnership that have not died, disappeared or become insolvent you will not be able to make a claim against your DBI. You can take action against the remaining partner/s for any loss or damages you have suffered.

A Company will usually end with ‘Pty Ltd’ eg. Sample Builders Pty Ltd
A company cannot "die" or "disappear"
However you can make a claim if the company is:
  • Deregistered; or
  • Becomes insolvent - which means it is under external administration.
You can search the ASIC registers to find out if your builder’s company is deregistered or under external administration.

If you think your builder has died, disappeared or become insolvent or your certificate of insurance was issued on or after 1 July 2015 and you think your builder has failed to comply with a Tribunal or Court Order, you may make a claim

If you are still unsure or would like to discuss your potential claim, please contact us