Various chambers of industries had written to the IRDA chairman seeking all general insurance companies to make an immediate payment of 75 per cent of the claims from flood-affected industrial and business units as well as the properties of general public if the requests are found genuine. Accordingly, India’s insurance sector regulator has responded & instructed general insurance and standalone health insurance companies to process and settle the claims arising out of floods in north India as fast they can.
According to the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI), the general and health insurance companies have been instructed to engage the services of investigators, surveyors, and loss adjustors even from neighboring areas, for quick settlement of claims arising out of the havoc created by the floods.
Districts reporting large numbers of claims to oversee by a designated District Claims Service Head. The insurers have to give wide publicity on the contact details of these officers in their websites and also in the media.
a. Nominate a Senior Executive in each affected State / UT to act as the Nodal Claims Officer overseeing the claims response. The Nodal Officer appointment should be communicated to the Chief Secretary/ Officer concerned of the State immediately.
b. Districts reporting large numbers of claims may be overseen by a designated District Claims Service Head. The contact particulars of the State / District heads should be published on the Insurer website and necessary publicity may be also given in the press.
c. All Insurers should also activate, publish 24×7 helplines to respond / assist Claimants and launch extensive awareness campaign duly highlighting the measures taken.
d. Special Claims Desks at District level with adequate delegated Claims Settlement Teams are recommended to be set up in affected areas to facilitate claims speedy processing and settlements including release of on-account interim payments to assist early reinstatement of property/ businesses.
e. It needs to be ensured that all claims are surveyed immediately and claim payments/ on account payments are disbursed at the earliest and in any case not exceeding the stipulated timeline.
f. Adequate number of surveyor may be engaged immediately as required and if needed, consider engaging surveyor from neighboring areas as well.
g The insurer shall encourage the policyholder to use electronic communication wherever possible for correspondence while initiating the claim and filing all the relevant documents. Efforts shall be made to ensure that digital processes are resorted to the extent possible for assessment of claims.
h. Insurers are also expected to review and streamline processing of claims by ensuring only such documentation necessary to substantiate claim quantum, to ensure expeditious final settlement.
IRDA’s response to the catastrophic condition mainly In the states of Punjab, HP & Haryana is being appreciated.