Amy Bach of United Policyholders and Paula Palozzi, Associate Director of the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation, Insurance Division, held a seminar at the First Party Claims Conference and called on aggrieved policyholders to file written complaints with departments of insurance. Palozzi explained that when insurance companies pay too little, a written complaint about a low paying claims adjuster may allow a new set of eyes to set the matter straight and call attention to the possibility of a market conduct study if insurers are repetitively making the same claims handling mistake.

Regulatory attorney Ann Frohman explained that market conduct studies are extraordinarily important aspect of insurance regulation. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners describes the importance of market conduct studies:

An essential component of insurance regulation is the appropriate oversight of the ways insurance companies distribute their products in the marketplace, namely, market conduct regulation (or market regulation). Market conduct—a term commonly used in the insurance industry to describe problems associated with the distribution and sale of insurance—has become a key insurance regulatory focus over the last decade. Insurance regulators view market conduct as critical to ensuring the welfare of consumers and maintaining public confidence in the insurance industry. Market regulation attempts to ensure consumers are charged fair and reasonable insurance prices. It also strives to ensure consumers have access to beneficial and compliant insurance products, and are protected against insurers that fail to operate in ways that are legal and fair to consumers.

For Hurricane Irma policyholders who have a complaint about claims handling, file a complaint in writing! The Florida Office of Insurance makes this very easy and you can file a complaint on line. Here is the link: https://www.myfloridacfo.com/division/consumers/needourhelp.htm

  • SHIRLEY HEFLIN

    Dear Chip:

    Insurance companies remind me of car lots – once you’ve spent your money and bought the product, they don’t care about you anymore!

    While I agree written complaints should be filed with Departments of Insurance, your average “pro se” Insured has no idea said Departments even exist, let alone that their written complaint may lead to a “market conduct study.” They just want the product they paid for to pay the claim justly submitted. They would be better off writing a letter – multiple letters – to the President of their Insurance Company, media outlets and, sure, if they know about it, the Departments of Insurance.

    The good news is that if an Insured is Pro Se and putting complaints in writing, they’re making great exhibits for their lawsuits when they are not pro se.

    Respectfully,
    SHIRLEY HEFLIN
    Tampa, FL