Poor processing of claims makes consumers feel most aggrieved


The Insurance Commissioners have many important functions, but the one with the most immediate impact for the consumers is complaint handling. Anyone who does not feel they have received the best service from local insurers can contact their state’s Commissioner.

There will be an investigation. All Commissioners have the power to order compensation in cases found proved. If the problem is systemic, the Commissioners can issue regulations to change the current practices. Perhaps because everyone waits anxiously for the payout on a claim, the most complaints are made about the way in which the claims are handled.

A failure by most people to read their policies until they are faced with the need to make a claim is a common fact. At this point of sometimes high emotion, people can discover problems. The most obvious revolve around precisely what risks are covered and the level of evidence required to support the claim. People find insurers reluctant to explain exactly what is required or to help in filling in the relevant forms.

There can be delays even if claims for defined risks are submitted on the right forms with the right documentation, which is even more annoying. Even though all Commissioners lay down timetables, many insurers fail to respond within the limits or, if there is an acknowledgement, there is no explanation of the cause of the delay.

What adds to consumers feeling aggrieved is the increase of car insurance quotes for all the drivers…

When it comes to the valuation of claims, there can also be disagreements with assessors offering obviously low settlements on a take-it-or-leave-it basis. Even when settlements are agreed, there can still be unreasonable delays in paying out. If you have paid the premiums on time, you are entitled to a proper level of service as directed by the wording of the police and regulated by the Commissioner. Indeed, if insurers did make payments more promptly, it would boost their reputations and improve sales by word-of-mouth. Car insurance quotes would therefore fall as business increased. As it is, additional money is spent in defending complaints to the Commissioner and the cost is passed on to us in the next car insurance quotes.

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