Regulators Release Complaint Stats for Mich. Auto Insurance Providers

Michigan regulators announced Wednesday that they recovered more than $8 million for consumers in 2010 as a result of resolving disputes between policyholders and their coverage providers.

The recouped funds came in the form of additional claim payments, premium refunds and policy rating changes effected by the state’s Office of Financial and Insurance Regulation (OFIR).

The agency fielded 3,645 consumer complaints last year, with 53 percent involving accident and health policies, 19 percent regarding auto coverage and 15 percent related to homeowner policies. Dollar amounts for each type of coverage were not available.

Michigan insurance recoveriesComplaints were down from 2009, when consumers filed more than 4,031, with 52 percent involving accident and health, 20 percent auto and 14 percent stemming from homeowner claims.

OFIR also made available information on the ratio of complaints filed against individual carriers that, despite not giving a complete picture of a company’s quality of service, can aid consumers who are trying to find quality Michigan auto insurance policies.

Officials emphasized, however, that policyholder complaints are only one variable that consumers should consider in picking a coverage provider. Others include the premiums charged and benefits provided by companies, as well as their financial stability and overall level of service.

OFIR is the latest state regulatory agency to release figures on funds recovered on behalf of policyholders.

Connecticut insurance regulators announced last week that they helped residents of that state recoup nearly $2.4 million from their insurers in the first half of 2011.

The full report on funds recovered and complaints filed in Michigan in 2010 is available on OFIR’s website.

About Gregor McGavin
Gregor McGavin is an award-winning journalist who has reported across the country for such publications as The Associated Press, the Arizona Republic, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and the Press-Enterprise.

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