Here’s a look at the most common reasons for delay in an insurance claim and quick ways to catalyse the whole process

Humans have always been fond of fast things. Be it fast cars, fast food or fast services, we do not like to wait for.

That’s true with getting our insurance claims settled too. Insurance is based on the concept of indemnity, and thus, when we suffer a loss, we seek quick settlement of claim in order to be restored financially, back to the position where we were, prior to the loss. At times, it can get difficult to wait for the money, as with waiting for everything else. Let's go through the most common reasons for delay in an insurance claim and find out ways to avoid such delays and catalyse the whole process.

1. Non-submission of required documents:

The most common and major challenge for an insured person is to understand, arrange and submit all the required documents for claim processing. Even the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) states that the turnaround time (TAT) of an insurance company only starts from the day of the final submission of all the required documents. A number of claims get delayed because of this, and the best way to tackle this issue is to comprehend the actual requirements of the company. There are times when people, in order to get a claim, submit unfilled forms or incomplete documents, thus inviting a delay.

a. Always keep original policy documents handyb. Contact the company or your agent and prepare a checklist of the required documents.

b. Submit complete documents in one go to avoid further requirement queries and submission causing delay.

2 . Non-disclosure and providing incomplete information

Honest facts and complete information are essential for insurance companies. Both, at the time of taking the policy and while submitting a claim, things get halted as soon as the company finds out that the information provided is either false or incomplete in any manner. Ensure that you do not hide any material information whether related to the policy purchase or with regard to the claim.

3. Non-cooperation with surveyor and investigator

In order to substantiate a claim, in a number of cases, insurance companies appoint a survey expert or an investigator. To avoid delay, the insured should meet the surveyor without any delay and provide all documents sought. Else, it will create two issues. One, it will delay the claim. And two, it will give rise to doubt in the mind of the surveyor as to why the insured is delaying the process.

How to accelerate claim process:

Cases where claim is delayed and reasons are unknown, even after all requirements are met, and process undergone: In such cases an insured has the following ways to accelerate the claim: a. You can involve your agent to find out where exactly the claim is stuck. As the agents provide business to the insurance companies, they would have a rapport with the insurance company, and hence, would be able ascertain the real-time status of the claim. b. Most companies/TPAs provide login access to their clients. Thus, by visiting their online portals, you can find out the status, reason for delay in your claim and figure out a solution for the same. c. Writing emails to the concerned team regularly and asking for updates. d. Keeping up a constant stream of communication with the parties involved in the claim process, i.e. the company, the investigator, surveyor, TPA, etc. e. IRDA always safeguards the policyholders’ interests. Thus, an insured can always raise a complaint on the Integrated Grievance Management System (IGMS) platform regarding inordinate delay in claims.

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