The regulator has directed insurers to take additional steps for ensuring registration of all claims and also provide quick settlement of eligible cases, especially in the cyclone-hit areas of Odisha and neighboring states.
The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI), the insurance sector regulator, has issued guidelines to make the claim process easier for the policyholders, in the aftermath of Cyclone Fani. The regulator has directed insurers to take additional steps for ensuring registration of all claims and also provide quick settlement of eligible cases, especially in the cyclone-hit areas of Odisha and neighboring states.
IRDAI has directed all the life insurers to extend every possible facilitation in quick and timely settlement of life insurance claims, has advised taking immediate actions. The insurance companies have been asked to initiate immediate action to ensure that all the reported claims are registered and eligible claims are settled expeditiously. The insurers should have a suitably simplified process, including relaxations in the usual requirements wherever feasible, to expedite the claims settlement.
IRDAI has asked insurers to simplify the registration and claim-settlement procedures and follow the same process as the one used after the Chennai floods in 2015. The regulator said, “With regards to claims involving loss of life, where the difficulty is experienced in obtaining a death certificate due to non-recovery of body, etc., the process followed in the case of 2015 Chennai floods may be considered.”
Cyclone Fani has resulted in an immense loss to property and lives. Post the directive by IRDAI, life insurance companies have set up a special helpdesk to service the beneficiaries of policyholders affected by the cyclone Fani in Odisha. Various life insurance companies have already taken initiative towards the same, whereas some are planning to do so. Initiatives among others include special claims helpdesk for claims arising out of Cyclone Fani.
Aalok Bhan, Director and Chief Marketing Officer, Max Life Insurance, said, “We have set up a Special Claims Helpdesk for those customers affected by the devastating cyclone Fani in Orissa and West Bengal. We are expediting the settlement process for death claims arising out of the disaster.” He added, “Generally, in times of a crisis, a customer may not know how and where to get in touch with an insurance company for a claims process and hence the dedicated toll-free numbers, as well as email IDs through which a claim can be registered, have been brought in.”
For a quick settlement of claims, insurance companies have also simplified claim documentation requirements. “With the set up of special Claims Help Desk, we have also appointed nodal officers for rendering pro-active services to the beneficiaries of the affected policyholders. The process of claim documentation has also been simplified in order to expedite the claim settlements quickly”, said Anoop Pabby, MD and CEO, DHFL Pramerica Life Insurance.
Documents required to process a claim faster include Municipal Death Certificate or Death Certified by any competent Government authority like Local Government of Odisha or Armed Forces or Government Hospitals or Police Authority, completely filled Death Claim Form, claimant ID, residence proof and bank account details to ensure claims are paid to correct beneficiary.