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Buyer beware when buying car insurance, says federal fraud agency

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Auto insurance is a tricky business in Yucatán. Photo: Gettty

Mérida, Yucatán — Useless insurance policies are being sold to drivers who are under the gun to buy them, says CONDUSEF, the national fraud-prevention bureau.

In Yucatán, the agency has received 500 complaints from policy holders whose accidents were not covered by new policies.

Jorge Pinto Escamilla, subdelegate of the CONDUSEF, said the agency has also received complaints about legitimate medical and life insurance claims not being honored.

With auto policies being a prerequisite for the state’s massive license plate exchange, some insurance companies have installed offices nearby plate-replacement centers, reports Sipse.

One policy that’s proven popular goes for 500 pesos and expires after five days. After it lapses, the policy holder renews for a year-long policy that costs 1,300 pesos.

There are also cases where insurers take money but never initiate the policy. One woman told the media that she bought insurance and replaced her license plate.

But when she later had a mishap, her insurer said they never filed her paperwork, and she wasn’t covered after all.

Condusef warned users that eight out of 12 insurers are below average in the User Service Performance Index.

The lowest rated insurance companies are Metlife Mexico, Banorte Insurance and HDI Insurance, according to the fraud unit.

Policy purchasers are advised to carefully check all the clauses in the document. Also see that the insurer has the backing of the Mexican Association of Insurance Institutions (AMIS) and that the insurance agent has a registration card with the National Insurance and Bonding Commission.

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