Washington Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler says his department has been fielding much more than the average number of complaints about how insurers are handling claims.
He says consumers are upset about claims being denied without an explanation that makes sense to them. Or they’re experiencing long delays before hearing from their insurer on a claim. Some claim estimates done via insurer apps are coming in thousands of dollars below the final cost of the repairs.
Kreidler says the complaints are on a record pace. His office said the OIC Consumer Advocacy Program got 467 complaints in April of this year. That’s up from the average of 287. Kreidler says the 63% increase is too much.
On May 15th, the OIC said 80% of its complaints involved how claims are being handled and the commissioner said he is going to hold a workshop on July 17th to hear what consumers are saying and to hear the whys from the insurers.
He also wants explanations from insurers, auto repair shops, restoration contractors and claims experts to determine where to go next and how to respond.
“Most of the time, the claims process works as intended when insureds and claimants alike are made whole,” Kreidler said. “But when there are disputes, the industry needs to step up and do more to help resolve them in a timely, accurate manner.”
Kreidler noted that the majority of complaints were about how, and how fast, claims are handled by insurers. Complaints in 2020 number 2,216. That figure rose to 3,045 in 2021. Last year the number was 3,276.
The commissioner says that is an unacceptable 48% jump over a two-year period.
Kreidler’s news release said an agenda will be produced a week before the event and it will include information on how to testify. The meeting will run from 11am to 1pm and — as most are — will be open to the public, or people can watch or testify via Zoom.
A video of the workshop will be posted online later that month.
Source link: The Washington Department of Insurance — https://www.insurance.wa.gov/news/kreidler-hosting-workshop-address-historic-increase-auto-insurance-complaints?utm_content=&utm_medium=email&utm_name=&utm_source=govdelivery&utm_term=