Texas Auto Complaints Hit Record Low

August 14, 2012

Texas motorists filed the fewest number of complaints against their automobile insurance company since the records began at the Texas Department of Insurance in 1994, according to a recent TDI report.

Texas consumers filed 1,414 complaints in 2011, and with 12.3 million auto policies in effect in that represents only one complaint among every 10,000 auto insurance policies in effect, according to TDI.

“This past year was by far the lowest number of justified complaints TDI has ever received,” Mark Hanna, a spokesman for the Insurance Council of Texas, said in a statement. “With the ease in communicating any problems with TDI’s Consumer Protection division, the numbers show insurance companies are treating motorists’ claims right.”

Records dating back to 1994 showed 4,936 complaints coming from 9.6 million policy holders, and the number of complaints from motorists peaked in 2002 with 5,626 complaints, but since Texas motorists have been filing fewer complaints every year, according to TDI.

Motorists can file complaints with the Texas Department of Insurance by e-mail, fax, phone and the U.S. postal system. Most complaints deal with the failure of companies to timely pay claims and many of the complaints are often directed toward a handful of the 325 insurance companies that offer private passenger automobile insurance in Texas.

“That’s why it pays to shop for auto insurance,” said Hanna. “With the complaints that come into TDI, the state agency can show the few insurance companies that are not doing a good job in settling auto claims and the Complaint Index ratio is the red flag.”

The Insurance Council of Texas is the largest state insurance trade association in the country consisting of roughly 500 property and casualty insurers writing business in Texas.

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