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Business: Insurance
Fair Assessment   (+6)  [vote for, against]
Cause you can't stop paying when the chips are down

I think it is fair to say that when you take out insurance you are primarily influenced by price and features.

Insurance companies know this and strive for the lowest price with the most features. Unfortunately when it comes to claim time many insurers will also strive to avoid paying a claim where they can.

I propose that the government in allowing an insurance company its license to operate also maintain that all claims should be handled by a separate company which submits its bill for reimbursement from the insurer (say quarterly).

The advantage is that claim would be investigated more fairly.
-- Brett-Blob, Oct 15 2007

Yes, absolutely. Possible additional point to your idea is that the identities of the claimants could be confidential and not shared with the insurance agencies; avoiding them penalising you for a claim you are entirely entitled to make.

But, I would much prefer it if you could take your policy to the bank, sign a statement, and get the cash instantly into your account. Your insurance agency would then have to appeal, at their own cost, against your decision to claim should they feel your claim was incorrect.
-- vincevincevince, Oct 15 2007

Not many "insurers" carry the risk element of the transaction. This is farmed out to re-insurers. This technically makes the "insurance company" the claims department for the "insurance company" the re-insurer. Having this relationships in no way benefits the consumer, and neither would the above idea. "submit bill for re-imbursement" equates to "don't bite the hand that feeds you".
-- 4whom, Oct 15 2007

Let me just say that I worked for a company where the boss would come around to each assessor and ask how many claims they had 'canned' - they don't mention that in their advertising. [4whom] I think if the only communication between the insurance company and the assessment company is a bill every quarter it is unlikely they would be any pressure not to 'bite the hand that feeds you'.
-- Brett-Blob, Oct 16 2007

//bite the hand that feeds you//

I'm assuming that Brett-Blob's idea doesn't incorporate any form of appeal by the insurance company, at least it shouldn't. A 'direct debit' type facility directly to the insurer's accounts would be even more appropriate.
-- vincevincevince, Oct 16 2007

"I like this idea, only I think it should be run by the government"

[marked for please don't use it as a tag-line]
-- normzone, Oct 16 2007

I think our medical is handled this way. There is a separate administrator. However, we are on retired-military medical and this may be different from civilian sector medical.
-- dentworth, Oct 16 2007

//only I think it should be run by the government.//

Ooh bad idea.
British Columbia has government run insurance. I.C.B.C.

We pay the highest rates in the country and, although they deny it, they are just as bad as private insurance companies for stalling customers for a year because a certain percentage of claiments just give up and go away.
-- 2 fries shy of a happy meal, Oct 16 2007

(looks up this idea after seeing the tagline)

It seems this general concept would be a good one to use throughout the marketplace. Nobody reads the contract that comes with their cell phone let alone their medical insurance. Boil everything down to a fair agreement summary that's easily understood, and have some sort of agency (doesn't even have to be a government one) certify that the (standardized) legal language behind it is reflected in the summary.
-- Worldgineer, Feb 13 2008

Its all about having the opportunity to have a drawn out legal battle when somthing really bad happens to you. If you'r car is crushed by a tree funnel all of your emotion into the fruitless legal battle. We accept that we should have to fight for every little bit of compensation in some sort of modern legal darwinism. Success through supperior litigation, starvation due to excessive retainer.
-- WcW, Feb 13 2008

//Nobody reads the contract that comes with their cell phone let alone their medical insurance//

Nobody is dumb.
-- sprogga, Feb 13 2008

random, halfbakery