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Integrated grievance management system for insurance policies

The system has defined turnaround times for different kinds of policy servicing and measures the actual time taken on all complaints

If you are dissatisfied with your insurance policy, you would approach your insurance company and lodge a complaint. And to make sure that insurers tend to complaints and resolve them quickly, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai) set up the Integrated Grievance Management System (IGMS) in 2011. It works like a central repository of all consumer complaints received by life insurance and non-life insurance companies.

HOW IGMS WORKS

It is an online consumer complaints registration system and all insurers have integrated their online complaint logging systems to IGMS, which is maintained by Irdai. Every insurer is required to have a grievance management system and policy approved by Irdai. You can register a complaint with an insurer, which will then be logged into the insurer’s system. It will then automatically flow into IGMS. Irdai gives the insurer 15 days to resolve the complaint and monitors the turnaround time. The system has defined turnaround times for different kinds of policy servicing and measures the actual time taken on all complaints. You can also approach IGMS directly by logging into igms.irda.gov.in and registering your complaint or calling the toll free number 155255 or 1800-4254-732 to register your complaint into the insurer’s system. You can also email to complaints@irda.gov.in. But Irdai encourages you to approach the insurer first.

SCOPE OF IGMS

Its mandate is restricted as Irdai does not adjudicate on individual complaints through IGMS. The idea is to effect speedy disposal of complaints and have a repository to help Irdai track nature of complaints and timelines. There is data on types of complaints (go to Irdai’s consumer awareness website www.policyholder.gov.in). The latest is of FY15. In three years, complaints regarding unfair business practices remained on top, followed by policy servicing and claims for life insurers. In FY15, there were 145,129 complaints regarding unfair business practices versus 211,622 in FY14. It registered 55,869 complaints for policy servicing and 31,076 for claims in FY15.

IS IT THE ULTIMATE ANSWER?

If you are not satisfied with the insurer’s response, you can refile the complaint in the system or appeal to the insurer’s grievance redressal officer. You can also take the matter to the insurance ombudsman or to consumer courts. Approach the ombudsman in your area.

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