‘Insurance co responsible for ascertaining cause of fire’
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Last Updated: Monday, June 28, 2010, 18:21
New Delhi: A consumer court has said the primary responsibility of ascertaining the cause of fire in an incident is that of an insurance company for the purpose of settling the claim.

Citing the rules of Licensing Professional Requirements and Code of Conduct Regulations, the Delhi State Consumer Commission said the company cannot reject the claim for not disclosing the cause of fire incident.

"The rule provides that the surveyor of the insurance company will examine the circumstances and the cause of loss, which implies, for surveyor to determine the cause of fire, and as such, it was the duty of the company to determine the cause of fire," the SCDRC said.

The Commission, comprising president Justice B A Zaidi and member M L Sahni, passed the order on a petition of the Oriental Insurance Company Ltd challenging the District Forum's direction to pay the damages amounting to Rs 16.32 lakh.

The insurance company had rejected the claim of the policy holder, Unique Fragrances, on the ground that the cause of fire had not been established in the surveyor's report.

The Commission upheld the Forum's decision, saying the damages awarded by the consumer court were correct.

"The surveyor has not mentioned in his report that it was self-inflicted fire and assessed the loss of Rs 16.32 lakh which was granted by the District Forum as claim for damages. The award of the Forum cannot be faulted," it said while dismissing the insurance company's plea.

Earlier, the company had alleged since the cause of the fire had not been disclosed in the complaint and in the report of the surveyor, it can reject the claim.

However, the Commission rejected the claim of the company.


First Published: Monday, June 28, 2010, 18:21

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