The Missouri Department of Insurance (MDI) recently reported that, through the first three quarters of 2013, it has already beaten the total amount of claim payments that regulators recovered last year for consumers.
The insurance regulatory department said last week that it has recouped $12.8 million for consumers who filed complaints against their insurers. In all of 2012, regulators recovered $11 million.
Consumers can turn to state regulators like the MDI to resolve disputes with insurers, questions about coverage and guide them through their rights as a policyholder.
The MDI also reported the breakdown of consumer inquires the department handled in the third quarter:
- 1,083 formal complaints
- 2,278 written inquiries
- 5,444 call-in inquiries
When looking at which line of coverage drew the most grievances, complaints submitted about Missouri auto insurers made up the second-highest amount, trailing health coverage-related complaints. Auto-related complaints were followed by complaints about homeowners coverage.
The MDI said most complaints were about insurers’ claim denials, followed by delays in processing their claims and, lastly, “unsatisfactory” settlement offers.
National data on complaints show that consumers most commonly cite one of those three reasons when submitting grievances to regulators.
“Consumers need to know they have a free resource in our department that can help them navigate the sometimes complex world of insurance claims,” John Huff, MDI director, said in a statement. “Often times a call or a letter from our technical experts is all it takes to resolve a dispute between policyholders and their insurance companies.”