Top 5 Innovative IT Insurance Services

INNOVATIVE IT INSURANCE SERVICES IN A CONSERVATIVE INDUSTRY?

While insurance is not known as an extremely innovative or exciting industry, new technology has created a platform for a number of exciting insurance information technology (IT) services for both consumers and insurance providers. Here we provide an overview of the top 5 innovative IT insurance services.

#1: PAY AS YOU DRIVE

Pay-as-you-drive insurance calculates premiums according to an individual’s driving profile, rewarding secure driving while tracking and increasing premiums on dangerous driving styles. Drivers who constantly speed, brake suddenly or drive in bad weather conditions (e.g. snow, rain) find themselves paying higher premiums than those who follow the rules of the road. A “black box” device installed in the car tracks key parameters of the journey and transfers the data to the insurance company, who then regulates the premium rate.

Some insurance companies already offering simplified versions of Pay-as-you-drive solutions:

  • Aviva
  • Hollard
  • Allianz Lloyd Adriatico

Companies such as Accenture are intensively research this topic to be able offer new solutions.

#2: SOCIAL BENCHMARKING

Online insurance quote platforms, such as Kanetix, all offer access to a limited number of insurance providers, allowing consumers to analyze only a subset of prices, which are based on the insurance provider’s data.

Social benchmarking of insurance premiums offers independent, consumer-generated data across all insurance providers. As consumers share information about their insurance spending, they can access the collective experience of other consumers, identifying if they pay too much and who offers the best prices for peers with a similar insurance profile.

An example of such a service is the InsurEye Peer Comparison tool, which covers not only spending information for online insurance products (20%-30% of the total market), but also for insurance offered directly by insurers, brokers, and agents.

#3: ONLINE POLICY MANAGEMENT

Online banking has become the norm, but online insurance management? Personal banking finance management tools and other useful online IT services are available for consumers for free. Finally, the insurance industry has started to close the gap. Now many insurance providers offer online and mobile tools to help consumers to manage their policies and provide customer support. One example is TD Insurance, which offers an online service allowing customers to perform many tasks on their own, eliminating the need to call a service line. Examples of such tasks are:

  • Modify contact information
  • Modify a car policy
  • Modify a Home Policy
  • Modify a payment plan
  • File a claim

A number of insurance providers both in Canada and the United States offer such tools for their customers e.g. TD Insurance, Nationwide, USAA, and more.

#4: MOBILE DEVICE CLAIMS

Collisions don’t happen while you are sitting at home in front of the computer. Instead, many insurance companies have developed solutions to help customers deal with their collisions and claims situations on their mobile devices. Typical example of mobile application offers customers many handy functionalities reducing headaches in case of an accident. A typical set of features for such an IT solution includes:

  • List of tips in case of an accident
  • Capture all required accident info (incl. photos)
  • Find / order towing service
  • Find a repair shop
  • Initiate a claim process
  • Check claim status
  • Find an insurance agent

Such apps are usually free and users can start using them directly after downloading from an app store. Especially useful is the ability to take a picture of an accident to document what exactly happened and estimate the potential level of damage.

#5: ADJUDICATION FROM A DISTANCE

If you’ve ever had a road accident, you surely know the range of emotions you experience: fear for the own health and those who are in the car, concerns about financial impact on future insurance premiums, not being sure what to do and in what order, dealing with police, towing services, another car driver etc.

Some companies, e.g. RBC Insurance, have so-called Road Angels – insurance experts who physically arrive at the accident location to support the customer.

Instead of sending an agent to a scene, IT insurance services could potentially provide long distance assistance via video. Modern smartphones are capable of transmitting two-way video, making it possible to show an insurance expert what has happened, and at the same time making the customer feel more secure.

Videoconference providers such as Skype already offer these technical functionalities, and Apple has FaceTime, a new video chat for its iPhone users. It’s likely only a matter of time before this technology results in a mature IT insurance service.

Does Auto Insurance Help If You Are a Victim of a Hit and Run Accident?

Unfortunately, the news about a hit and run is on the radar every so often. A pedestrian or a car driver is hit by a vehicle and the driver responsible for the accident speeds off without owning up to his actions by checking on the victims and providing his or her contact info to police.

What defines a hit and run accident?

A hit and run incident occurs when one driver crashes into a person or a car and intentionally drives on in order to avoid prosecution or accountability for resulting death, injury and/or damages.

Should you become victimized in a hit and run event, never pursue the fleeing car. You might find yourself in a road rage incident or the like. Leave the chasing to the cops who are trained in this type of thing. What you should do immediately following the crash is to alert the law enforcers.

For your best interest sake, gather as much information as you can about the event. This will help police catch the driver who collided into you. It will also add to the chances of your submitted insurance claim be processed to your advantage.

Here is what the insurance underwriters tell victims of hit and run accidents to do.

As said, the more information you gather about the case, the more chances of it ending to your benefit.

Tell authorities about facts by providing the following:

• The make and model of the other car or vehicle

• The license plate number of the other car

• How to get in touch with people who witnessed the accident

• The time and place when and where the accident occurred

• Images taken of your car immediately following the collision. (leftover paint of the other car on your vehicle will assist authorities in locating the other driver and pinning charges as it will help the insurance company determine a good outcome for your claim)

• Physician’s report about any injuries you or your passengers incurred as a result of the accident

If the driver who slammed into you and drove off without accepting liability is caught, you can submit an auto claim directly to his or her insurance company. But, should the other driver happen to be with insufficient insurance coverage or no coverage at all, you might want to resort to an attorney’s services.

Another avenue to pursue is your own insurance coverage. If the hit and run driver does not have proper insurance to cover your losses, you can file a claim with your insurance company. States differ in policy as far as the claims process goes, so you’ll have to do the research. Generally speaking, if you have uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage, you will be covered for medical bills and if you have uninsured motorist property damage insurance, you will be covered for related auto repair work.

Though there are various US states that do not cover you with these forms of insurance, they should cover you if you have personal injury protection coverage as well as medical payments insurance and collision coverage.

Of course, it’s best to speak with a knowledgeable independent insurance agent that has experience in this type of claim, so make sure you hook up with a reliable source!