Claims complaints data is a ‘particularly important indicator’ of performance, says service co-founder

In quarter one of 2021, 82% of complaints about general insurance providers referred to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) related to claims, according to analysis from Insurance DataLab (IDL), a data insight and consultancy business.

The data, which covers 111 insurance providers and was gathered via a freedom of information request, showed that a total of 5,500 general insurance complaints were referred to the FOS in the first three months of this year.

Claims-related complaints amounted to 4,600 during this time period, which is more than double the number of complaints made around claims in the same quarter last year.

Since quarter two in 2017, nearly 78% of all FOS complaints have been about the claims process - only 19% of complaints pertained to policy admin and 3% regarded sales and advice.

The FOS has found in favour of the customer approximately 30% of the time when dealing with claims-linked complaints.

Insurance DataLab

Speaking on these findings, Insurance DataLab co-founder Matt Scott said: “The regulatory consultation looking into the fair value of insurance is shining a renewed light on the importance of value and customer service in insurance.

“The regulator is already advocating for the publication of more data on these issues and this means the performance of all insurance products is going to come under much greater scrutiny.

“The FCA itself has said that complaints about claims are a particularly important indicator of how products are performing, so understanding such complaints data is going to become an increasingly important challenge for brokers and insurers alike.”

Insurance DataLab, a data insight service, has been launched today (24 May 2021). The business offers access to comparable industry data to help providers benchmark performance, assess existing and potential partners and identify new opportunities.