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Complaint 2 of 36 in "Claim Denied or Delayed"

Insurance Carrier: Empire General
State: New York

Consumer Complaint:

I purchased a lease car wear and tear policy. The insurance company won't process my claim unless I send them "a copy of the wear and tear policy front and back". Shouldn't a reputable insurer provide its consumer with a copy? (I have a receipt for the policy purchase and the policy number). The issue here is that the car dealer never supplied the policy for "wear care" and now the insurance company won't accept the claim without the policy copy. I would think a reputable insurance company would provide its customer with the policy copy, they have acknowledged the claim, and have acknowledged the policy number. Also the car dealer provided a receipt for the policy payment when the car was leased. The only item the insurance company claims to be lacking to pay the claim is that policy copy , which of course they have because they issued it!

Insurance Expert Answer:

To an outsider his sounds like some low level clerk in a call center reading a script saying the insurance equivalent of "no ticket, no laundry." Of course, if you have the policy but don't want to be bothered making a photocopy for 20 cents, it sounds as if you're as stubbornly childish as the clerk is bureaucratic.

Every so often there can be a real reason a company asks for a copy of policy cover -- particularly with low cost, low value miscellaneous lines policies -- as some companies issue blank numbered certificates to agents BUT the certificate is NOT issued and binding until it gets filled out with the details of the risk and/or the agent's stamp and signature to be effective.

If you lost the policy, instead of dealing with clerks, send a polite letter, with a stamp, to the CEO of the insurance company explaining the situation and enclosing the receipt and copy of the check. Many policies are issued by the insurance company from its home office, such as individual life insurance, individual auto and homeowners, etc. BUT, as I tried to suggest, when it comes to minor lines, that's not always the case. Yours is likely one of those situations where the company only issued a group policy to the dealer, and the dealer then issues the certificate of coverage and is supposed to tell the company when it issues the certificate, and pay the company the premium.