However, I think that it is reasonable to report publicly that they took over 15 weeks to process a very simple claim and waited until the end of that process to point out that some information was missing, when it was too late to go back and rectify the omission. The latter will be the main element of my complaint to the Ombudsman.
It's this matter of following the fine detail that annoys me. In this case, I did everything I could in a relatively familiar context. And 'all' I was dealing with was a stolen rucksack. But what if I'd been on somewhere more remote and injured, with no knowledge of the local language, culture and administration? The odds are high that I wouldn't follow their process and they would take the same approach: "Sorry, but when you were helicoptered off that Alpine mountain you didn't check with us first ('coz I was close to dying), and you underwent hospital treatment without authorisation ('coz I was unconscious), so we're not going to reimburse you or repatriate you." I can just hear it now ......
The only way to check things out would be to ask what they'd do in various scenarios when you take out or renew the policy. But I really can't imagine that the average telesales operator will be able, or want to go through a half hour of "What happens when ...?" discussions. And even if they did, it wouldn't be binding. The problem is with the ruthlessness of the claims management process and the only way to test that is with a real claim.
andyhull wrote:That is not how claims should be handled, you should be told exactly what cover you are purchasing. The claims process should be straight forward, they should explain exactly what documentation they require when you first make them aware of the claim.
The Insurance Industry is adversarial AFAICT. Lots of time and effort were put in by Snowcrazy and friends, into finding out what off piste cover words really meant in insurers Policy docs a couple of years back. This is much the same. Weasel words rule.
Insurers are not in biz for our benefit, they exist to make profits, so will make it as hard as possible to claim. Occasionally one of the pesky claimants will get them hauled over the coals for being naughty, but I'll bet they are still quids in.
andyhull wrote:Not all insurance companies are he same, it's also why not all premiums are the same.
Based on my (skier) experiences with Snowcard (very expensive policy) I can't agree with either of your points. Towards me they behaved more like with a budget insurer, withdrawing part of my cover based on my getting an appointment for a private scan. I know others have had better experiences with them. They were also IMO slow in reinstating my cover when I received an all clear.
So, not all insurers are bad all the time.
However, I think insurers who behave badly should be made to pay up if at all possible, so that they don't get in the habit of mistreating and basically robbing their poor clients/customers.
When I tried doing it myself I had an awful job getting the insurance co to communicate with me, they just avoid you, lose your paperwork and hope you will get fed up and go away. So although it costs a bit more I am back with the broker, it's worth it not to have the hassle.
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