Losing valuable or precious possessions can be traumatic enough without having to then
battle with your insurer when making a claim. While using Saropa’s services will
certainly improve the efficiency of the claim process, there is always a chance that
you are not happy with the response of your insurer.
Fortunately, there are dispute resolution procedures in place that insurance companies
follow in an attempt to resolve these problems as quickly as possible.
In 2006, the insurance industry established a new general Insurance Code of Practice
that sets out the agreed standards and responsibilities for companies and
organizations that have signed up to the Code.
The Code has been designed to raise the customer service standards in the Australian
general insurance industry and protect the rights of policyholders. The Code is
monitored by the Insurance Ombudsman Service (IOS), who independently and impartially
resolves general insurance disputes between insurers and participating companies.
The IOS makes sure each company signed up to the Code meets the required standards. If
a company does not, it can be required to take action to fix the problem and sanctions
may be imposed.
From an individual’s perspective, before contacting the IOS to register a complaint it
is important to make sure you qualify. Important steps include:
Take your dispute to your insurance provider’s Internal Dispute Resolution process
and ask for a decision.
If the dispute remains unresolved, or you are unhappy with the decision, contact
the IOS on 1300 78 08 08 (toll-free).
You must contact the IOS within three months of receiving the decision
from your insurance provider.
Most types of general insurance, from house insurance, travel insurance to business
insurance are covered under the Code.
The only types of general insurance that are not included are reinsurance (insurance
for insurers) and insurance that has specific rules under Government statute, like
Compulsory Third Party Insurance (CTP), workers’ compensation, marine, and
medical indemnity insurance. Life insurance and health insurance are not included as
these have different regulations.