Insurance: litigation will rise sharply in 2020

The insurance brokerage service sees a significant increase in the number of referrals in 2020 compared to 2019. Referrals are related to property and liability insurance litigation. The report also develops two particular points of difficulty: fuzzy exclusion clauses and forced mobile phone insurance sales.

Insurance mediation: key figures 2020

17,355 referrals were recorded in 2020 or + 18% compared to 2019. The report of the insurance mediator estimates that this increase could explain the impact of the 2019 “modernization of justice” law, which has been binding since 1er January 2020 any person facing a dispute in the amount of less than 5,000 euros, to justify an attempt at conciliation, mediation, or participatory proceedings before any court seizure.

However, only 29% of processed referrals were declared admissible. 71% were declared inadmissible, 49% because they were “premature”, ie care the insured had directly seized the insurance mediation before having previously conducted the proceedings with his insurer, and in particular his claims department. In 2020, a total of 3,608 proposals for insurance mediation were proposed, or + 16% compared to 2019. In 30% of cases, the mediation was in favor of the insured.

Before taking any action with the Insurance Ombudsman, you must respect the claim procedure provided for in your contract: you must first make a written claim to your insurer. Without a response within 2 months or if you received an unsatisfactory response, you can contact the mediation service.

Automobile and housing contracts account for 60% of cases

corpse property insurance disputes are still the most important: they account for 61% of referrals, distributed almost equally between car insurance contracts and multi-risk housing affinity insurance contracts (so – called nomadic products, travel cancellation, credit card) account for 18% of these disputes, the travel cancellation disputes having risen sharply during the 2020 health crisis (+ 80%). On the other hand, the personal insurance contract disputes (pension and life) account for only 39% of litigation. Nearly half of the litigation concerns health insurance contracts (27%) and then life insurance contracts (20%).

Two-thirds of disputes originate in refusal of compensation by the insurer and then the claim management by the insurer, wrongly or wrongly, was a source of dissatisfaction on the part of the insured. It should be noted that terminations initiated by the insurer or the insured are sensitive issues and represent 9% of referrals in 2020.

Follow the guide before contacting the insurance brokerage service!

To prevent your case from being rejected (premature referral, subject not covered by the insurance mediator), answer a few questions to ensure that your application is admissible.

Then you can grab mediator directly online, or by sending your folder to:
Insurance Mediation
TSA 50110
75441 Paris Cedex 09

Certain exclusion clauses and forced mobile phone insurance sales

Too many contracts with exclusion clauses yet sanctioned by the Court of Cassation. The report cites clauses such as “lack of maintenance” or “negligence” or the fact that the house was not built according to the “rules of the art”: these are vague concepts, condemned as such by the courts. The insurance mediator emphasizes that the priority of the profession should be to revise these exclusion clauses without having to interpret them once they have been sanctioned by the judges.

On the other hand, the insurance mediator believes that the affinity insurance disputes (mobile phones, travel cancellations, credit card…) represent a “disproportionate source of litigation” (18% of property and casualty insurance claims).

About cell phone insurance, insurers are sometimes unaware that they have entered into an insurance policy, which they find out about due to withdrawals from their bank account. In cases involving insurance mediation, there is often doubt as to the actual delivery of the documents to the policyholder and the quality of the information provided by the seller of the main property. Better training of these intermediaries is a priority. On the other hand, the fourteen-day period to retract in these situations is too short.

Insurance mediation is also being prepared for the reform of the referral to the Mediation following the report of the Financial Sector Advisory Committee, published in July 2021. This report advocates that Mediation may be seized two months after the first written expression of the insured’s dissatisfaction with his insurer or broker.

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