Insurance and good news is an oxymoron in more ways than one. Yet this is one of those rare times when tidings from the insurance industry are favorable for the average consumers.
Predictably, insurance industry is hardly responsible for the good stuff. It flows from the Maharashtra State Consumer Dispute Resolution Commission.
In a landmark verdict that has the potential of fundamentally changing the way the claims are rejected by the insurers in this country, the Maharashtra State Commission has held that insurance claims are not timebound. The ‘deadline’ for filing a claim is not mandatory but only directory and the insurers cannot reject any claim simply because it was filed after the expiry of this ‘deadline’.
This remarkable verdict was delivered by the State Commission while deciding upon a complaint filed by a widow against the Oriental Insurance Company Ltd. The forum directed The Oriental Insurance Company Ltd to pay the widow of a man who died in a 2006 accident the entire claim of Rs 1 lakh plus a compensation of Rs 46,000 even though the claim had been filed well past the one-month ‘deadline’.
The Commission further stated that it has constantly held that giving intimation within specified period or within one month is not a ‘mandatory condition’, but it is a ‘directory’ in nature and breach of this condition does not empower appellant insurance company to forfeit or foreclose the insurance claim required to be duly settled.
And thus, the insurers in the country were duly snatched of one of their favorite grounds for repudiation of valid claims–delay in filing!
Kudos State Commission!
Insurance claims not time-bound: Panel (Times Of India)