JIS News

The Financial Services Commission (FSC), the agency responsible for overseeing the insurance and securities operations in Jamaica, has reported that most of the complaints coming into that office relate to insurance matters.
Speaking at the Jamaica Information Service (JIS) ‘Think Tank’ recently, Executive Director of the FSC, Bryan Wynter noted that of those complaints, most had to do with motor insurance.
“What we find (is that) the majority of complaints that come into the FSC relate to insurance matters and the majority of those relate to motor vehicle issues, which is in fact the largest area of insurance activity,” Mr. Wynter said.
The Executive Director pointed out that between January and December last year, 258 complaints were received for the insurance and securities industries. Of this amount, 248 cases or 96 per cent were for the insurance industry and four per cent or 10 complaints were against the security companies.
Mr. Wynter said that general insurance accounted for 89 per cent or 221 of the 248 complaints received, while life insurance accounted for 11 per cent or 27 complaints. A further breakdown of the complaints for the general insurance industry revealed that all related to motor insurance companies, while none were received for property insurance during the period.
The Executive Director said there might be persons who make claims that are exaggerated or inaccurate and as such, insurance companies had a duty to be careful before making payments. Nonetheless, he said this should not be taken to the extreme where some members of the public felt that “claims are not being settled promptly and effectively within the law”.
He said the FSC was looking at the complaints handling procedure of companies to ensure that they had a proper system, one that provided for an independent arbitrator for dissatisfied customers.
“When we looked at the actual complaints, we were able to see which companies are complained against and we have been working with those companies to identify why they are getting these complaints, and to ensure that as they settle these complaints satisfactorily, they implement an effective plan in dealing with claims,” Mr. Wynter said.
He pointed out that the FSC had developed a complaints system to allow members of the public to complain directly to the FSC about the treatment they have received or about an issue they have with any of its licencees.
“This is an active function that we have. we investigate these complaints and we ensure that appropriate action is taken by the company or we take action ourselves,” the Executive Director said.
He encouraged members of the public to continue to use the company’s helpline: 1-888-FSC-HELP (1-888-372-4357) to lodge their complaints against any of its licencees. However, he advised persons to direct their complaints to the relevant insurance or securities company first.
Mr. Wynter said that it was the aim of the FSC to detect and address problems early before an issue arose, adding that players in the insurance and securities industries must attain the “fit and proper” standard required for companies and their agents. The FSC was established 2

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