Missouri Reports $7M Recovered for Consumers in Q1

Regulators in Missouri reported recently that complaints against and investigations into insurers resulted in more than $7 million going to consumers in the state in the first quarter this year.

The Missouri Department of Insurance (MDI) received more than 900 formal complaints about insurers and fielded 7,300 complaint reports in the first quarter. Complaints led to $6.2 million in additional claims payments, according to the department.

Most complaints were because of claim denials, followed by delay of claims and settlement amounts.

The MDI’s Market Conduct Section, which conducts investigations and exams of insurers, returned more than $1 million to consumers.

Complaints about Missouri auto insurers made up the second-largest category by provider type, at 216, outnumbered by the 309 complaints relating to health coverage, according to a report from the department.

In 2012, the MDI returned nearly $11 million to consumers and charged insurers $5.1 million in penalties.

Other amounts recovered by state regulators for consumers in 2012 were:
Connecticut: $8.7 million
Illinois: $10.3 million
Louisiana: $6.4 million
Maine: $3 million
Montana: $5.2 million
North Dakota: $4.3 million
North Carolina: $26 million
Ohio: $24.4 million
Washington State: $2 million (in fines against insurers and agents)

“Consumers should not assume that they’ve run out of options if their claims have been denied by their insurance company or they feel that their settlement is unfair,” John M. Huff, MDI director, said in a statement released on April 30.

Earlier that month, the Midwest had dealt with a string of damaging tornadoes that raked across states including Missouri and Arkansas. Damage was reported in St. Louis neighborhoods like The Hill, where the National Weather Service said that debris “badly damaged” vehicles. The MDI issued an advisory after Gov. Jay Nixon declared a state of emergency.

About John Pirro
John Pirro is a licensed fire and casualty insurance agent specializing in various aspects of the auto insurance industry. He worked in the auto body repair industry before taking a reporting position at Online Auto Insurance News.

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