OAI: Colorado Report Underscores Role of Auto Insurance Regulators

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Mediating disputes between insurers and their policyholders is a key job for state regulatory agencies.

Colorado insurance regulators released their annual report last week that, according to OnlineAutoInsurance.com, highlights two important services performed by state insurance agencies: handling consumer complaints and making company-specific complaint data available to the public.

The agency’s report to the Legislature gives a detailed account of how many and what types of consumer disputes the Division of Insurance received and helped resolve between July 2010 and June 2011. And the report also includes an overview of the latest complaint data for the state’s 20 largest car insurers.

Consumers may want to use this report to see the top rated auto insurance companies in the state so that they can buy coverage from a provider who has a decent history of customer satisfaction.

According to the latest report, State Farm—which has the largest share of the state’s auto coverage market—had the best complaint record for 2010. The report shows how insurers did per dollar of premium written, and State Farm had only 172 complaints for about $526 million worth of premiums. That track record is 63 percent better than the average.

Car insurance continues to be the top gripe for policyholders, according to the report. Complaints and protests filed against car coverage providers accounted for just over 50 percent of the total.

The average car coverage complaint lodged with the Division took 40 days to close, and the average dollar amount returned to the consumers who filed those complaints was about $2,160.

Fewer than half of the auto complaints and protests that the Division received during 2010–2011 ended up being confirmed complaints in which the insurers were actually found guilty of wrongdoing.

Source: http://www.dora.state.co.us/insurance/consumer/2011%20docs/consComplaintReportLege092211.pdf

To learn more about this and other important ways to examine companies before purchasing a policy, readers can go to http://www.onlineautoinsurance.com/companies/ratings/ where they will find informative resource pages and a quote-comparison generator that can help them quickly find the best rate for a policy.

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Benjamin Zitney
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