NSW Emergency Services Levy - update 

What is New South Wales Emergency Services Levy (ESL)?

The New South Wales ESL provides funding for emergency services in NSW, including Fire and Rescue NSW, the NSW Rural Fire Service and the State Emergency Service all of which help keep our community safe.

The levy is collected by insurers on behalf of the NSW Government and is included in residential and commercial property policies and motor insurance policies.

What’s changed with the NSW ESL?

In December 2015, the NSW Government announced it would abolish ESL from insurance premiums and replace it with a new Fire and Emergency Services Levy (FESL) to be paid alongside council rates.

QBE Insurance has been preparing for the transition to the FESL for more than a year and had already ceased to collect NSW ESL on affected policies. On 30 May 2017, the NSW Government announced new plans to indefinitely defer the abolition of the NSW ESL collection on insurance premiums. 

How will NSW emergency services be funded now?

As a result of the NSW Government announcement, ESL will be reinstated on insurance premiums and insurers will be now required by law to continue to collect the levy on behalf of the NSW Government.

What does this mean for policy holders?

In line with government legislation, we will re-introduce the collection of ESL as part of your insurance premium until further notice.

If I didn’t pay NSW ESL last year, why am I paying this year?

All eligible policies will now have the ESL included in their total premium in line with the new legislation passed by the NSW Government. The amount of collected ESL is passed to the NSW Government and used to fund emergency services in NSW.

How will I know how much ESL I am paying on my insurance policy?

You will receive an insurance schedule or statement when you renew, purchase or amend your insurance cover. The NSW ESL charge is clearly itemised on your insurance schedule and is a percentage of your base premium. Insurers, including QBE Insurance, collect these levies on behalf of the NSW Government.

Why has my insurance premium increased?

Premiums are regularly reviewed and take into account a number of risk factors such as location and construction, claims history, type of cover selected and indexation of sum insureds, as well as business expenses, including operating and reinsurance costs. Any changes to our premiums are independent of changes to the NSW ESL.

Further information

If you have any questions about the changes to ESL or the amount of ESL that applies to your policy, please call us on 1300 021 413.

Contact us

Need more help?

Call 133 723 Mon-Fri 8am-8pm, Sat 8am-5pm (AEDT)