Commissioner’s Corner

February 2018

Each month the DOI posts short Q & A installments of commonly asked insurance questions and responses from Wyoming Insurance Commissioner, Tom Glause. If you have a question you would like to see addressed or if you want additional information, please feel welcome to contact the DOI at 307-777-7401 or 1-800-438-5768 or at:  www.doi.wyo.gov.  




Once an insurance claim is reported to your insurance company, consumers expect to be made whole quickly, but the claim process may not go the way you anticipated. The following are some common claim questions and tips from the Wyoming Department of Insurance (DOI).

Q.  How do I know if my auto insurance company will pay my claim?

            First, you should contact your agent or broker. Claims are handled according to the coverages and limits stated within your policy.  Claim processes can vary by company.

Consumers are reminded that they must pay their monthly premiums to keep their policy active. Deductible limits for comprehensive and collision coverage are determined when you purchase a policy. Selecting a higher deductible might lower your monthly premiums, but you will have to pay the higher deductible amount when a claim is filed. It may not make sense to file a claim if your repairs cost less than your deductible. 

Q.  What can cause my auto insurance claim to be delayed?

Claim delays are a frequent complaint. If you're involved in a two-car or more auto accident, your insurer and the other insurer(s) will conduct a liability investigation. You can help by taking photos of your damage, the area where the accident took place, and providing witness contact information, if available. The NAIC's WreckCheck at: www.insureuonline.org/auto_wreckcheck_guide.pdf walks users through what to do after an accident.  If there is a dispute about what happened, a police report may be necessary before making a liability determination, but police reports may take weeks to get.

Q.  Can I do anything in advance to make filing a claim easier?

            Preparation ahead of time is always good advice.  Read your insurance policy and ask questions before a loss occurs. Know what your policy covers and talk with your agent or insurer to make sure you have the right plan or appropriate coverage. Understand the covered perils and any exclusions in your policy.  Knowing your insurance coverage can provide peace of mind in the event of an emergency and can help if or when you need to file a claim.