Millennium Post

Kerala floods: Watchdog tells insurers to settle claims fast

New Delhi: As rains and floods continued to wreak havoc in Kerala, insurance regulator Irdai on Friday asked all insurance companies to set up special camps and make immediate payments against insurance claims.

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai) has issued guidelines in the regard for both life and non-line insurance claims and asked them to report the progress.

More than 100 people died in rain-related incidents in Kerala in just one day on Thursday, sources in the State Disaster Management Authority said, even as defence forces scaled up operations this morning to rescue those stranded in the worst-hit areas.

"Initiate immediate action to ensure that all reported claims are registered and eligible claims are settled expeditiously," said Irdai's guidelines to life insurance companies.

With regard to claims involving loss of life, where difficulty is experienced in obtaining a death certificate due to non-recovery of body, Irdai has suggested the insurers that they may adopt the process followed in such situations.

It also directed life insurers that "a suitably simplified process/procedure including relaxations in the usual requirements wherever feasible may be considered to expedite claims settlement" and report progress on claims settled on weekly basis every Monday.

The regulator has asked the non-life as well as standalone health insurers to widely publicise details of offices/special camps set up for the purpose of claim settlement.

"In order to gauge the magnitude of the loss, all non-life insurers (including standalone health insurers) are advised to submit information relating to insurance claims in Kerala on a daily basis," Irdai said.

Armed forces have been pressed into service to help and rescue flood-affected people in the southern state. Besides, the state government too has deployed its own machinery to deal with the unprecedented flood situation.

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