Letters to the EDITOR @ New Straits Times
I read the following letter with interest, therefore I have to put in some comments….
The following are some main pointers we can zoom into:
- The policy was cancelled with forged authorisation and the party who did it has no reason doing so…. that’s what was being perceived….
- No notification was ever served on Pragasam before the cancellation but is this because the “last known address” was never made known in Pragasam’s application?
- It took the company more than 5 months to notify Pragasam – was it a case of insurer’s inefficiency or Pragasam was not too traceable?
Isn’t the main issue more to do with the importance of the Customer’s Last Known Address?
I can think of some possible situations here:
Personnel Covering Up For An Acceptance made Beyond Authority:
It is obvious that this cancellation was done by some internal parties (agent inclusive) within that insurance company – real reason could be the staff concerned had accepted the insurance case and then discovered that it falls within the EXCLUSIONS of the company’s guideline. He or she could have been reprimanded by the superior and forced to get it cancelled, by hook or by crook….
My guess is that they put in all necessary documentation into order including a letter of cancellation advice, supposedly to be sent to Pragasam but never did…. all documents were done on a “pretentious” basis….
The processing department of the insurance company processed the requirement to order, chucked into the pigeon hole for the next step, which is to get it deliver to the agent and thence the customer. Perhaps they all waited for the cheque so as to make explaining to the customer less painful!
All these steps took months, perhaps also the agent took sometime to locate Pragasam.
Pragasam’s Last Known Address Was NOT Made Known Or Updated To The Insurance Company
This “last known address” of the customers is always a bane to the insurance companies as most agents treat this as NOT IMPORTANT for if the insurance company needs to contact the customer, they can do so via them…. no necessity to channel information directly to the customer. However in reality agents usually request their principal to direct any mails or information to the customers, especially where such customers fall under the SMALLER category.
“Agents don’t give priority to ensuring Insured’s correspondence address is correct when filling up an insurance application for them, which is the mother of most problems that the customers eventually faced!”
What Pragasam should had done at the point of purchase is to ensure his correspondence address is correct and any mails should be able to reach him without any problem. He should also ensure his email address is inserted into the proposal form or any digital database…..
“All cancellation notification must be sent on REGISTERED mail….”
If this was done, Pragasam should not face any problem even if his vehicle met with a claim after his insurance is terminated by the insurer. Reason being, the insurer must had sent a REGISTERED letter notifying that cancellation to his last known address in the proposal form. And, it is also the duty of the insurer to ensue that the said letter is sent – the onus of proof lies with the insurer in any subsequent turn of event. The insurer also must ensue that Pragasam is given a reasonable time frame to respond to the cancellation notification.
‘ALWAYS ENSURE YOUR ADDRESSES ARE CORRECTLY INSERTED INTO THE APPLICATION FORM”
Ensure not only your correspondence address but also your email address.