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HANDY TIPS FOR BIKE INSURANCE CLAIM OR TWO WHEELER

This article will breakdown everything you need to know about two wheeler insurances. It will make the consumer understand all aspects; from tips, suggestions to what is included and excluded under the insurance cover.

Motor Vehicles( MV) Act : this act mandates that all two wheelers are to be effected insurance cover for third party liability, which covers liability for injuries and damages to others (the third party, the first party being the vehicle owner and the second party being the insurance company) that you (the vehicle owner) are responsible for. This is also called limited liability insurance and covers the insured and the owner/ driver of the two-wheeler/pillion rider against third party liability arising out of an accident that causes damage or loss to the third party or its property as well as death/disability of the owner/driver arising out of the accident. It’s also good to know that there has been a rise in the two wheeler insurance premium.

Insured’s Declared Value (IDV): The IDV is a repeated abbreviation in the policy document. Insured’s declared value of the vehicle is deemed to be the & ‘sum insured’. It is fixed separately for each year of insurance during the policy period as shown in the policy schedule.

Insurance for Comprehensive Cover: While the MV Act does not provide for covering insurance for other types of risks, like theft, fire, or even damage to the owner’s vehicle, almost all the general (non-life) insurance companies offer the comprehensive cover as an option.

What Is Covered?

A comprehensive cover (also called package policy) assures some clear benefits, as listed below. On total or partial loss/damage to your two wheeler.

Against natural calamities such as:
  • Fire
  • Explosion
  • Self-ignition or lightning
  • Earthquake
  • Flood
  • Typhoon
  • Hurricane
  • Storm
  • Tempest
  • Inundation
  • Cyclone
  • Hailstorm
  • Rockslide
  • Frost
  • Landslide
 
Against manmade calamities such as:
  •  Burglary
  • Theft
  • Riot
  • Strike
  • Malicious acts
  • Accident by external means
  • Terrorist activity
  • Any damage in transit by road, rail, inland waterway, lift, elevator or air
 
Optional Add-On Covers

The following additional covers are available on payment of extra premium:

  • Nil depreciation cover (nothing payable in case of partial loss; depreciation available to a maximum of 50 per cent on various metal, plastic, fibre or rubber parts in the event of total loss)
  • Loss of accessories (electrical/electronic)
  • Loss of driving license
  • Daily cash allowance (during the period of post-accident repair)
  • Engine protection
  • Tyres and tubes
  • NCB protection
  • Anti-theft device
 
What Is Not Covered?
  • Normal wear and tear
  • Breakdowns
  • Consequential loss
  • Loss occurred due to invalid driving license (expired license)
  • Loss occurred on account of drunken driving and/or drugs intake
  • Loss due to civil war, war, etc.
  • Claims arising out of contractual liability
  • Use of the vehicle otherwise than in accordance with & ‘limitations to use’ (for example, when driven by a person other than owner/driver and/or as stated in the driver’s clause)
  • Any accidental loss or damage and/or liability caused/sustained/incurred outside the geographical area as mentioned in the policy document

This list is indicative.

Handy Tips & Key Benefits:

  • Opt for policy cover for a longer period (to avail discount).
  • Opt to buy your policy online (discounts are available).
  • Opt for vital additional covers such as engine protection, zero depreciation and anti-theft device (to ensure additional protection on payment of a small price).

The following additional covers are available on payment of extra premium:

  • Most insurance companies are offering up to one lakh rupees as personal accident cover to the policyholder towards unlimited liability for third-party death/ bodily injury claims and indemnity for third-party property damage (one company gives up to two lakh rupees).
  • One insurance company offers discount up to 40 per cent on premium for purchasing the policy online.
  • Some companies offer insurance cover for accessories (such as damages to mudguard, lamp/lights, tyres, bumpers, etc.) on payment of a small additional premium.
  • A couple of insurance companies offer cover against towing charges (when the scooter/bike gets immobilised due to accident)

 

Grievance Redressal Mechanism

Our study reveals that only a few insurance companies have posted a robust GRM system on their website. These are summarised below.

Firstly, what is your grievance? It may be one or the other of the following:

  • Any partial or total repudiation of claims by the insurance company
  • Any dispute in regard to premium paid or payable in terms of the policy
  • Any dispute on the legal construction of the policy in so far as such disputes relate to claims
  • Delay in settlement of claims
  • Non-issue of any insurance document to consumer after receipt of the premium
  • Any other grievance (not specified above)
  • Stage 1:  Call the company's toll-free number or customer care number and lodge your grievance. Follow this up by sending an email and a hard copy to ensure that your complaint is on their desk.
  • Stage 2:  If dissatisfied with the reply, escalate your grievance to the company’s AVP or the company’s customer service desk at apex level. Follow the same process as stated above.
  • Stage 3:  If the issue still remains unresolved, approach the insurance ombudsman pertaining to your jurisdiction (access www.irdaindia.org and www.gbic.co.in/ombudsman.html).

 

Summary of suggestions and insights:

  • Almost all insurance companies are offering similar policies with almost the same inclusions and exclusions. The consumer ends up choosing a policy that charges reasonable additional premium for add-on covers. To know which two wheeler insurance brand is the best buy, click here ( which is the best two wheeler insurance)
  • There is near-standardisation of the third-party liability policy, which is anyway compulsory for a two-wheeler to ply on the road. Consumers stand to benefit from systematisation of the claims settlement process. For this, consumers will need to have a comprehensive cover policy, which can be made a compulsory buy for two-wheelers.
  • IRDA could mandate to bring out a standardised comprehensive cover that includes all major aspects of some vital covers.
  • According to estimates by environmentalists, bikes and scooters emit nearly 32 per cent of air pollutants generated by the transport sector in Delhi. During last year’s odd-even scheme enforced by the Delhi Government to curb pollution on Delhi's roads, it was found that lakhs of bikes/scooters were contributing to pollutants emissions. Sooner rather than later, the government may have to introduce less-polluting two-wheelers (how about CNG/LPG/biofuel kits?) to curb pollution.

Consumer Voice chose 13 two wheeler insurance package policies based on direct consumer feedback and product structure to reveal the best, good and fair buys in the market. Click to know which is the best two wheeler insurance

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