In a policy-holder-friendly decision, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) asked the heads of non-life insurers to encourage policy-holders to file electronically documents relating to Cyclone ‘Nisagra’ claims.
“It is interesting to see IRDAI asking insurers to accept soft copies of documents and encourage policy-holders to adopt electronic communication due to Covid-19 pandemic,” an industry official, speaking on the condition of anonymity.
Cyclone ‘Nisarga’ hit Maharashtra recently. According to IRDAI, the cyclone has resulted in damages to properties in Maharashtra, Gujarat and other neighbouring States. The industry official said even in the case of Cyclone ‘Amphan’ damage claims, the regulator had asked the general insurers to accept soft copies of the documents due to Covid-19.
“Whether the IRDAI would ask insurers to accept soft copies of claim papers in the normal course as well has to be seen,” he added.
Queried whether the insurers would ask for hard copies of the documents at the time of claims settlement, he said the guideline does not mention that. In order to mitigate the hardship for the policy-holders/claimants who had lost their properties/loved ones, the IRDAI has issued guidelines for immediate registration and settlement of claims.
The IRDAI has also asked the non-life insurers to appoint a nodal officer for each of the cyclone-affected states and also a nodal officer at district level, and publicise the contact details of the nodal officers and also start 24×7 helplines.