OmbudService for Life & Health Insurance sees record number of complaints

By The IJ Staff | September 19 2017 11:30AM

Photo: Freepik

The OmbudService for Life & Health Insurance (OLHI) reported a 23.2 per cent increase in complaint volumes in its newly released annual report for 2016/17. OLHI attributes this increase to better public awareness regarding its services.

“We feel our increased profile helps to explain the rise in complaints. Canadians are learning more and more about us as we’ve seen an uptick in visits to our website and mentions of OLHI in the news,” Andrea Zviedris, Communications Manager, OLHI, told The Insurance and Investment Journal. “Also, our member companies continue to be an important source, telling their clients about our services as a part of their internal complaints processes – giving clients an extra place to turn to for help with complaints. I think all these things, combined, are driving up OLHI’s business volume,” she added.

Denied claims

For fiscal 2016/17, OLHI received 2,632 complaints. Of these, 57.5 per cent related to denied claims. Disability, life and employee healthcare and dental, together, made up 83.9 per cent of all product complaints, reports OLHI.

The highest increases in complaint volumes were from Quebec (+36.2 per cent), Prairie provinces (+25.6 per cent) and British Columbia (+ 24.4 per cent).

Higher web site traffic

With respect to its higher profile, OLHI noted a 19.1 per cent increase in web visits over last year, reaching nearly 85,000.

"OLHI is successful because of stakeholder support and the respect we receive as an independent, impartial organization," said Brigitte Kent, Acting Executive Director. "This allows us to meet our benchmark of closing 80% of all complaints within 120 days."

To learn more, read OLHI’s annual report.