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How to File a Complaint with your State Department of Insurance

Each state has its own name for its insurance regulatory department. Some states use "department" others use "Division" still others use "office". You can find contact information f or your state's department of insurance by clicking the link below for your state.

Your state's department of insurance is supposed to regulate insurance companies that are licensed to do business in that state. That means they are allowed to investigate complaints of bad claims handling. You can file a complaint with your state department of insurance if you feel your insurance company has unreasonably delayed or denied your insurance claim.

But before you file your complaint, be sure and do your homework first and provide the people at the department with all the ammunition they need to understand why you are right and the insurance company is wrong. This is where most people fail and, as a result, state departments of insurance rarely order any insurance company to pay and do not look beyond the insurance company's explanation to see if it is reasonable.

It isn't that the people who work there don't care, but they have limited staff, limited time, and a thousand insurance companies to monitor and police. There is no way they can investigate all the complaints they get, and they don't. If they did, they would never get anything else done. To make it worse, each insurance company has a designated "compliance specialist" whose job is to deal with the departments of insurance when a complaint comes in, and these people quickly become experts at knowing how to deflect questions and concerns by the department. They learn how to provide a response to the regulators that discourages them from digging any deeper. In most cases that simply involves offering an excuse that will require time to figure out who is right and who is wrong. When that happens, the departments pass the insurance company's answer on to you, and close the file.

We are not saying that filing a complaint is a complete waste of time. However, you have to make it as easy as possible for the officials. That means laying out the policy provisions, the most important facts, and perhaps even the law, in a simple manner that makes it obvious that the claim is payable. The employees at the departments of insurance are experts at their jobs, but they generally do not have the resources to investigate your claim beyond what you give them.

If you are having trouble, a lawyer with a background in insurance law can give you a lot of direction. You can't afford to hire a lawyer in every case, but you can get some free advice and direction that can make all of this a lot easier.

Find a lawyer who deals in insurance law, and offers initial consultations without charge. Yes, there are many lawyers who won't talk to you without cash in hand, but there are many others that talk to people every day about their problems and offer advice with no charge at all. We offer that free service every day. Sometimes just knowing what button to push makes all the difference. You can email us at .

To find your State Department of Insurance, click below.

Alabama Illinois Montana Puerto Rico
Alaska Indiana Nebraska Rhode Island
Arizona Iowa Nevada South Carolina
Arkansas Kansas New Hampshire South Dakota
California Kentucky New Jersey Tennessee
Colorado Louisiana New Mexico Texas
Connecticut Maine New York Utah
Delaware Maryland North Carolina Vermont
DC Massachusetts North Dakota Virginia
Florida Michigan Ohio Washington
Georgia Minnesota Oklahoma West Virginia
Hawaii Mississippi Oregon Wisconsin
Idaho Missouri Pennsylvania Wyoming

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