The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA)

The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA)

Reforms were initiated with the passage of Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) Bill in 1999. IRDA was set up as an independent regulatory authority, which has put in place regulations in line with global norms.

IRDA has been framing regulations and registering the private sector insurance companies. It launched of the IRDA online service for issue and renewal of licenses to agents. So far, there are 13 life insurance companies and 14 general insurance companies. Premium rates of most general insurance policies come under the purview of the government appointed Tariff Advisory Committee.

Powers, Duties & Functions of IRDA

The IRDA Act, 1999 lays down the duties, powers and functions of IRDA. The Authority shall have the duty to regulate, promote and ensure orderly growth of the insurance business and re-insurance business.

The powers and functions of the Authority shall include,

(a) issue to the applicant a certificate of registration, renew, modify, withdraw, suspend or cancel such registration;

(b) protection of the interests of the policy holders in matters concerning assigning of policy, nomination by policy holders, insurable interest, settlement of insurance claim, surrender value of policy and other terms and conditions of contracts of insurance;

(c) specifying requisite qualifications, code of conduct and practical training for intermediary or insurance intermediaries and agents;

(d) specifying the code of conduct for surveyors and loss assessors;

(e) promoting efficiency in the conduct of insurance business;

(f) promoting and regulating professional organisations connected with the insurance and re-insurance business;

(g) levying fees and other charges ;

(h) calling for information from, undertaking inspection of, conducting enquiries and investigations including audit of the insurers, intermediaries, insurance intermediaries and other organisations connected with the insurance business;

(i) control and regulation of the rates, advantages, terms and conditions that may be offered by insurers in respect of general insurance business not so controlled and regulated by the Tariff Advisory Committee

(j) specifying the form and manner in which books of account shall be maintained and statement of accounts shall be rendered by insurers and other insurance intermediaries;

(k) regulating investment of funds by insurance companies;

(l) regulating maintenance of margin of solvency;

(m) adjudication of disputes between insurers and intermediaries or insurance intermediaries;

(n) supervising the functioning of the Tariff Advisory Committee;

(o) specifying the percentage of premium income of the insurer to finance schemes for promoting and regulating professional organisations engaged in insurance and reinsurance business;

(p) specifying the percentage of life insurance business and general insurance business to be undertaken by the insurer in the rural or social sector; and

(q) exercising such other powers as may be prescribed

IRDA’s Cell for redressal of grievances of Policyholders

The IRDA has a cell that receives and looks into complaints from policyholders—Life and Non-life grievances are handled separately. The Cell plays a facilitative role by taking up such complaints with the respective insurers.

Cases of delay/non-response: Cases of delay/non-response in matters relating to policies and claims are taken up with the insurers for speedy disposal.

Claims/policy contracts in dispute: Complaints relating to these are analysed and insurers are advised to examine the same. If required, their attention is called to specific issues for examination/re-examination. However, if the insurer does not change its stand even after examination/re-examination, the complainant is informed of the same. The Authority does not carry out any adjudicaton. For this, the complainant would have to approach the appropriate judicial channel.

Contact information:

Complaints against Non-life insurance companies:

Y.Priya Bharath,Deputy Director/ LVS Sunitha, Junior Officer,

Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority,

Parisrama Bhavanam, 5-9-58/B,

Basheerbagh: 500 004

Phone: 040- 55820964, 55787938: Ext: 128/119

E-mail: ypriyab@irdaonline.org, sunithalvs@irdaonline.org

Complaints against Life Insurance Companies:

Sanjay Nene,

Officer on Special Duty,

Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority,

Parisrama Bhavanam. 5-9-58/B,

Basheerbagh: 500 004

Phone: 040- 55820964, 55787938 Ext: 131

E-mail: mailto:sanjay.nene@irdaonline

Chapter 4

Non –life insurance companies

At present there are 14 non- life insurance companies in India.

* Bajaj Allianz General Insurance Company Limited http://www.bajajallianz.com

* ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company Limited


* IFFCO Tokio General Insurance Company Limited http://itgi.co.in

* National Insurance Company Limited. http://www.nationalinsuranceindia.com

* New India Assurance Company Limited http://www.niacl.com/

* The Oriental Insurance Company Limited http://orientalinsurance.nic.in/

* Reliance General Insurance Company Limited

* Royal Sundaram Alliance Insurance Company Limited http://www.royalsundaramalliance.com

* United India Insurance Company Limited http://www.uiic.co.in/

* Tata AIG Life Insurance Company Limited http://www.tata-aig.com

* Cholamandalam General Insurance Company Limited http://www.cholainsurance.com

* HDFC-Chubb General Insurance Company Limited http://www.hdfcchubb.com

* Export Credit Guarantee Corporation Limited https://www.ecgcindia.com

* Agriculture Insurance Company of India Limited http://www.aicofindia.org

Chapter 5

General Insurance Products

Non –life Policies can be broadly classified into :

* Plans for Corporate/ Business

* Plans for Individuals

Corporate Policies

A. Speciality

B. Office

C. Employee

D. Property

E. Contingency

A. Speciality:

These are the policies catered to meet special needs or needs of specific industries. Some of them are

Ö Aviation Insurance

Ö Marine Hull Insurance

Ö Freight Forwarders Insurance

Ö Port Liabilities

Ö Film Insurance,

Ö Credit Insurance,

Ö Event Insurance

Ö Jewellers Block Policy

Ö Bankers Indemnity Policy

Ö Shopkeepers Policy

Ö Marine Cargo Policy

Ö Multi Peril Policy for L.P.G. Dealers

B. Employee policies

Various policies available for employer to take care of employees or to meet legal obligations.

Ö Group Personal Accident

Ö Group critical illness

Ö Group Travel

Ö Workmen's Compensation

Ö Keyman Insurance

Ö Overseas Travel insurance

C.Policies for Office /manufacturing units

For protection of business , industrial units from contingencies

Ö Fidelity Guarantee Insurance Policy

Ö Special Contingency Policy

Ö Plate Glass Insurance

Ö Neon Sign Insurance

Ö Fire Policy

Ö Burglary Policy

Ö Machinery Breakdown Policy

Ö Electronics Equipment Policy

Ö Consequential Loss Policy

Ö Contractors All Risk Policy

Ö Advanced Loss of Profit / Delay in Startup Policy

Ö Contractor Plant and Machinery Policy

Ö Mega Package Policies

Ö Marine cum Erection / Storage cum Erection Policy

D. Health Insurance

· Group Personal Accident Policy

· Mediclaim Policy

· Overseas Mediclaim Insurance- Business &Holiday

· Overseas Mediclaim Insurance- Frequent Corporate travelers

· Overseas Mediclaim Insurance- Employment & Studies

· Personal Accident Policy

Policies for Individuals

* Home

* Travel

* Motor

* Accident

* Health

Home Insurance

There is a wide range of policies and packages available. They cover more than you’re your home and its contents. Some of the perils covered are:

* Fire

* Explosion / Implosion

* Burglary

* Riot, Strike, Malicious Damage cover

* Damages due to Impact by rail / road vehicle or animal

* Bursting and / or overflowing of water tanks, apparatus and pipes

* Missile Testing operations

* Leakage from Automatic Sprinkler Installations

* Lightning

* Loss caused by Storm, Cyclone, Hurricane, Tornado, Flood and Inundation

* Destruction by subsidence of part of the site on which the property stands or landslide

* Bush Fire

Earthquakes and Terrorism are usually provided as add-ons due to the increase in frequency.

The other perils included in some feature rich policies are:

* Rent for alternative accommodation

* Loan repayment for home/car

* Public liability

* Baggage Insurance

* Home Appliances cover

* Personal Accident

* Loss of cash in transit

Tata AIG’s policy Home Secure ‘Supreme’ is a comprehensive policy for home insurers.

Travel Insurance

There are various policies which cover International travel, domestic train travel, student’s overseas travel, travel to specific countries. Bajaj Allianz has a unique plan ‘Shubh Yatra’ which insures the home against burglary during travel.

Auto Insurance Policies

They cover:

Ö Repair / replacement of the parts of the vehicle

Ö Payment for the market value of the vehicle in case of a total loss, provided that the loss occurs due to an accident, theft, earthquake, flood, riot, strike and malicious acts.

Ö It covers the legal liability of insured towards third party personal injury and property damage arising out of an accident involving the insured vehicle.

Health Insurance Policies

Health Insurance Policies may provide cover for:

Ö expensive medical care including pre & post hospitalisation expenses.

Ö provide a daily allowance for each day of hospitalization.

Ö Protection against the major life threatening illness like Cancer, Heart Attack, Paralysis, Kidney failure, Stroke, etc

Ö accidental death

Ö permanent disability

Ö hospital confinement allowance

Bajaj Allianz has a health insurance plan called Personal Guard which provides children’s education bonus.

Other Insurance Policies

· Baggage Insurance

· Mobile Phone Insurance

· Executive Travel Insurance

· Directors’ and officers’ Liability insurance

· Professional Indemnity Insurance

· Portable Equipment Insurance

Life Insurance Knowledge:Life Insurance , private, death, employee pensions and annuities,life insurance, educational, life insurance companies

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