Broker urges coach operators to aim for the 1% Club

Specialist fleet insurance broker, McCarron Coates, is urging coach operators not to push their claims into the 300% club by waiting more than 25 days to report them. It says submitting a claim on day one can put them in the 1% club or better.

Insurers’ figures show a claim reported 25-30 days after it occurred, can easily cost more than four times the sum it would have cost, if reported on day one. Some put the increase at 396% (Insurer Allianz data).

Although the swift reporting message has been appropriate for some time, it has never been more relevant, according to McCarron Coates. Claims inflation was at 17.4% even at the end of 2022, the highest for five years. The average cost of a motor claim has soared from £4,502 in 2019 to £6,280 in 2022, according to Willis Towers Watson claim metrics.

“One practical and highly useful thing that anyone involved in an incident can do is to report the claim immediately” – Ian McCarron

In what it describes as a ‘complex, challenging’ market environment, McCarron Coates says coach operators must prioritise efficient claims reporting and management. By promptly reporting claims and taking proactive steps to control costs, the fleet insurance specialist says operators can safeguard their financial stability and continue to navigate the current trying times with greater resilience.

“The clock is literally ticking from the moment a collision takes place” – McCarron Coates’ director Ian McCarron

“The clock is literally ticking from the moment a collision takes place,” says McCarron Coates’ director Ian McCarron, “and the impacts on the cost of a claim are palpable. The minute an insurer loses control of the claim to a third party, that third party can start adding in significant costs – car hire, medical treatment for injuries, inflated repair costs and the like.

“The more a company or individual can do to control the cost of their claim and keep things in their own insurer’s hands, the more they can exercise a positive influence on their renewal premium. One practical and highly useful thing that anyone involved in an incident can do is to report the claim immediately. It’s as simple as that.”

McCarron Coates vows to do all it can to keep clients in the 1% club. It has an in-house claims team, to ensure its customers were in the best possible position to control their claims costs and also get ongoing advice as to how to prevent claims from occurring in the first place.

Avoiding the call centre route entirely, McCarron Coates’ clients have an app that enables quick information capture to move a claim forward, direct from the roadside where the incident occurred. The app has voice-to-text capacities, can collate photographs, gives a precise GPS location for the incident and guides the driver through every stage of in-situ claim submission.

QR codes have been placed inside some clients’ vehicles, allowing drivers to simply scan the code to get a claim underway.

“Nobody should be allowing claims to enter the 300% club” – Ian McCarron

It’s all about encouraging day one reporting, according to McCarron Coates. “Nobody should be allowing claims to enter the 300% club,” says Ian McCarron, “and yet that club has an awful lot of members, due to post-incident stress, apathy, physical inability to get through to a call centre, poor administrative systems and many other reasons.

“We have the claims team to keep the claim in our insurers’ hands from day one and the technology to help make that happen. This is a huge advantage, as people are only human and can forget or underestimate the importance of acting swiftly.

“In a time of huge claims inflation, allowing a claim to drift can lead to a very nasty shock at renewal, when insurers seek to recoup the losses they had not factored in, caused solely by late reporting.”

  • Click here or call 0113 298 3489 to find out more about McCarron Coates’ approach to claims.

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