The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) develops a list of the most common complaints consumers have about insurnace companies. The most common are from the way insurance providers handle claims, whether it be for health insurance, car insurance or homeowners insurance. Here are four things you can do to help you in the process of making and receiving a claim:
Keep Meticulous Records
Yeah, I know it's a pain, especially if you're not detail-oriented, but you'll be thankful in the long run. Let's take the coverage of contents in your home. No one knows all the things that are their home; you're constantly buying new stuff; I know that because y'all come to me complaining about how much debt you're in, due to all the buying you do. A suggestion would be to take a tour of your home with a video camera recording all the stuff you have. Then place that recording in a safe deposit box at the bank. You can't get any more detailed than that and it's not all that difficult to do.
Know The Details of Your Policy
Yeah, it's not like reading a thriller, but it will help immensely to know your policy inside and out. You need to know what's expected of you when making a claim and what your rights are. If you're making a large claim, it may be helpful to have your attorney present during the deposition, such as when the insurance provider interviews you about the details of an automobile accident.
This is the one that pays off the most. Use patience and always be nice when speaking to the insurance provider; after all, they're paying the claim. Keep following up on every conversation and once again, keep detailed records in writing about every communication.
Use State Regulators
This should be a last resort. The first step is to talk directly to your agent or a representative of the insurace provider. Once again, use patience and talk to them civilly and slowly; do not get angry. Explain the situation in detail; you may wish to write out bullet points before making the call. Outline the events so your communication is coherent. If this does not work, then contact your state insurance regulator.
Have you recently submitted an insurance claim that took a long time to pay or wasn't the amount you thought you should receive? Let me hear from you in the comments below.