Insurance Commission may compel firms to automatically shoulder vehicular accident damage

Ina Reformina, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 12 2019 11:07 PM | Updated as of Nov 12 2019 11:32 PM

MANILA - The Insurance Commission is considering issuing a circular to compel insurance firms to shoulder automatic motor vehicle liability and payment.

This, after Senate President Vicente Sotto III and Minority Leader Franklin Drilon criticized insurance firms for causing undue delays in the processing of claims during Tuesday’s plenary debates on the proposed P4.1 trillion 2020 budget.

Sotto said he will not block the agency’s budget and will prevent the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee from launching a probe. 

"Last year, if you recall, I asked the Insurance Commission to upgrade the way insurance companies handle insurances, especially with motor vehicles. As an example, last year one of the major causes of traffic in the greater Manila area and also in other key cities — ‘pag may banggaan maghihintay ng pulis, maghihintay ng kung anu-ano. "

“Ang daming cellphone, daming litrato na pwedeng kunan na agad yun but they insist on staying there, causing traffic for everyone, when pwede naman magpalitan na ng calling card ng insurance at dapat insured lahat ng vehicles - tapos boxing, alis na,” Sotto said.

“Actually, the reason why this is happening is the insurance companies would not want to automatically pay but litigate the claim in the hope that the claimant will give up. They are so good in collecting premiums but when it comes to payment of the claims they do everything in order that the insured will mot be able to get the insurance processed that they paid for,” Drilon said. 

“What the senate president is pointing out is why can’t it be an automatic liability and payment since premiums are being paid?” he asked.

“They (Insurance Commission officers) say it can be done through a circular,” Senator Sonny Angara replied. 

Angara is the sponsor of the budget bill.

The commission will meet non-life insurers on Wednesday and will report the outcome to the Senate.

“We would like to see how the regulation will be done so they (Insurance Commission) will be stricter on these insurance companies, so that we will prevent the Blue Ribbon Committee from investigating… I will not pose objections to the submission of their budget now, but it does not prevent any of us from caling on their budget again before we pass it on second reading if we are not satisfied with the report that we will be receiving from them,” Sotto said.

The proposed budget of the commission will be tackled again in tomorrow’s resumption of plenary debates.