The UT Consumer Forum has slapped a penalty of Rs 1.5 lakh on a leading insurance company for not paying for the repairs of a damaged car covered under its insurance scheme.
Directing the Bharti AXA General Insurance Company to pay for all the repairs of the car,which was damaged in an accident,the forum also asked it to pay litigation costs of Rs 11,000 to a Panchkula resident.
On January 7,2011,Brij Lal met with an accident near Sector 26,Panchkula in the morning while coming back from Barwala. While his Chevrolet Optra Magnum overturned and was heavily damaged,Lal s collar bone was also fractured in the accident. He underwent a surgery and was on bed rest for three months. His car was sent to a authorised service center and had suffered damages of Rs 5,46,015,he contended. While the amount for the repair was supposed to be paid by Bharti Axa as per the bumper policy purchased,Lal had to pay only Rs 1,000 in respect of excess clause.
However,the complainant received a demand of Rs 52,000 from the service centre named RSA motors,for starting the repairs of the cars engine. Lal sent many letters to the insurance company and its surveyor over the demand of the aforementioned amount but did not receive any response. Lal also received a demand of around Rs 62,000 within a month in addition to the estimated Rs 5,46,015,forcing him to file a consumer complaint.
Quashing the insurance companys argument that damage to the engine of the car had not occurred due to the accident but because of an attempt to start the vehicle after the accident and hence,the repairs could not covered under the insurance policy,the forum held it deficient in services and ordered it to pay the whole amount of repair after deducting an amount of Rs 1,000 for excess clause. The forum further ruled that in case of not making the payments within a month,the insurance company would be liable to pay RS 3 lakh,double of the amount of the compensation.