What is Breakthrough Facilitation?

Breakthrough is a free service we run with homeowners whose earthquake claims are not making the kind of progress they need. There are a whole raft of reasons why progress can be slow but with some additional support many homeowners are able to move forward in a way that leaves them feeling more confident.

It’s a facilitation service rather than an advocacy service. We don’t negotiate for a specific claim outcome, but rather, facilitate a constructive discussion where homeowners can have the conversation they need to have with the right people, e.g. a senior manager, quantity surveyor, or engineer. 

There is one collective aim – to understand where the claim is at from the homeowner’s perspective and figure out what needs to happen to progress it.

We want to be fully transparent about what we do, which means there's a bit of reading below. If it's a bit much to take in, get in touch so we can have a chat.

Who can it help?

Most people who have an earthquake claim. We currently work with EQCSouthern Response, IAG, Lumley, Tower, and AA. If you're with a different insurer, feel free to get in touch anyway, as we may be able to make it work. You can be anywhere in the process:

  • Just gone over cap,
  • about to have a site meeting,
  • in the midst of repairs or a rebuild,
  • have issues with the quality of your repairs or rebuild

How does it work?


There are a few ways to get involved:

  • You reach out to us – Anyone who has an earthquake insurance claim can give us a call and ask us to facilitate a discussion.
  • We reach out to you – Some insurers will ask us to contact customers whose claims are progressing slower than they expected, so we may phone or email you.
  • You are referred – Another earthquake support service or your claims specialist may refer you if they think we can be of help.


This is about us listening to you. Through listening, we can help you figure out what you really want to say, where you think you are stuck, and how you think progress can be made.

We write up notes based on our conversation which also form the agenda for the facilitated meeting with your insurer. You check they are accurate and make any changes you want to. If you want to go ahead with a facilitated meeting we ask you to sign a consent form so that we can send the notes off to the manager at your insurer who we think is best to help with your claim.


Once your insurer has read the notes we give them a week to gather everything they need to make sure they can answer your questions and address your concerns. Before the facilitated meeting we check the staff are ready and let you know that everything is on track for a productive meeting.


We have this meeting where you feel most comfortable, e.g. at our office, your home, or another neutral meeting space. We work hard to set the right tone and reinforce that the meeting is led by the homeowner’s needs. Sometimes people are really nervous about the meeting and expect it to be a battle but most walk out feeling like it was one of the best meetings they’ve had in the last five years.

At the end of every facilitated meeting we write up another set of notes that include what actions were agreed to, who is responsible to ensure they happen, and how long they will take to be completed.


Part of our role is to check up and make sure everyone is on track to complete actions on time. If there are delays, we figure out why they have occurred and make sure everything is communicated back to homeowner. Further down the track if you need Breakthrough again, we will help.

Why is it a free service?

Breakthrough is completely free for the homeowner. Insurers independently contract us to run the service. We think it's important to pass the cost on to insurers rather than homeowners because we want the service to be accessible to anyone. This type of independent contract is fairly standard for facilitation industry-wide. Because we advocate for the right conversation rather than specific positions, there's no conflict of interest. Our outcomes are that the homeowner sets the agenda, the right people are brought to the table, the homeowner is heard, and actions are agreed upon and completed.

I have more questions. What now?

If you're keen to be involved, or want to know more, get in touch with Marcus or fill out the contact form below.

Marcus Irvine
Breakthrough Facilitator
027 304 8092