Insurance alert: Now you can claim insurance for a stolen car anytime

Apart from coming to terms with the loss, what is the next biggest ordeal that you have to undergo if, god forbid, your car is stolen? It is claiming the insurance. As of now, insurance companies insist that you have to submit your claim within 24 hours of the unfortunate incident. It is definitely taxing for an individual to get all the papers in so little time, that too when he is dealing with a difficult situation. But, now the victims are relieved of this pain.

According to a report in The Times of India today if your car is stolen, there's no time bar to claim insurance. This is as per a judgement passed by a consumer forum.

 Insurance alert: Now you can claim insurance for a stolen car anytime


What happened: One Chetan Kohli of Mulund, Mumbai, found one morning that his vehicle was stolen and he reported to the police about it. When he called the insurance company to inform about the vehicle and his desire to claim the insurance for the stolen vehicle. The insurer advised Kohil, to get all the necessary papers and visit the insurance company's branch office. However, since the vehicle was new the papers were in the possession of the local RTO. By the time Kohil collect the papers and submitted it to the insurance company, the mandatory 24 hours period was over. And the insurance company refused the claim. This resulted in Kohli filing a complaint in the South Mumbai District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum. Read the entire Times of India report here.

"The opposite party (insurance company) cannot repudiate the genuine claim of the insured simply on the ground that there was no communication within the stipulated point of time," the report quoted from the order. The forum directed Oriental Insurance Company to pay Rs 1.54 lakh compensation over and above the insured amount of Rs 4.86 lakh to Kohil.

This means that, now there isn't any time period within which you need to make a claim for the stolen car. Cars getting stolen isn't a new thing in India. Just recently, The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) has found that 90 percent stolen cars were white. In fact, the bureau's annual statistics showed that Delhi topped with 72,215 thefts registered, followed by Bangalore (33,682). While Mumbai stood third with 25,748 and Jaipur fourth (25,394). Pune and Ahmedabad follow with 17,841 and 17,693, respectively. And the overall thefts in Maharashtra were 1,06,596 from 2007 to 2012. Read the Firstpost story here.

Clearly car thefts are a big risk and hence buying the right type of car insurance becomes very important.

What type of insurance to buy: Generally speaking, there are two types of car insurance policies. First is third-party liability, which is mandatory in India. The second is comprehensive insurance, a.k.a own damage. It is better to buy comprehensive insurance because this covers third party liability, personal accident and liability and theft. It will also pay for the damages of your own car due to accident. Of course, this policy will cost you more than the mandatory third-party liability, but it's worth it. To know more about important things to keep in mind while buying car insurance read this.

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Updated Date: Dec 21, 2014 02:38:24 IST