H.E. Eng. Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansoori, Minister of Economy and Chairman of the Insurance Authority highlighted that the activation of the Insurance Dispute Resolution Committees work by the Authority is an important and qualitative step in the provision of alternative means to resolve and address disputes arising from insurance contracts in the domestic market.
H.E. explained that the Authority's activation of the Insurance Dispute Resolution Committees comes in implementation of Federal Law No. (3) of 2018 concerningamending some provisions of Federal Law No. (6) of 2007 on the establishment of the Insurance Authority and the Organization of Insurance Operations and the amendments thereof, which entrusted the Authority to form committees to settle and resolve insurance disputes before judicial recourse.
He pointed out that the Authority started activating the work of the committees in November 2019, after completing the formation of committees pursuant to the Insurance Authority Board of Directors' Decision No. (33). Two committees were formed, one in Abu Dhabi and the second Dubai. Further, there is a likelihood offorming other committees in any emirate, as appropriate and in accordance with therequirements of the public interest.
H.E. added that the Insurance Dispute Resolution Committees contribute to enhancing the competitiveness of the UAE's insurance sector, and the creating trust and confidence amongst policyholders, beneficiaries of insurance, the public and investors in the sector, in the presence of quality means to settle and resolve insurance disputes and a specialized legal and judicial system that take swift and simplified actions simplified without cost or financial burden.
H.E. clarified that there are no fees to be paid by customers to recourse to the Dispute Resolution Committees and there is no requirement to appoint lawyers. Further, there is a possibility of providing modern smart services to facilitate and accelerate the procedures for resolving insurance disputes through the application of an electronic system to consider the complaint remotely and through the use of modern electronic means without the need of physical presence of the dispute parties. Eventually, this will achieve social and economic stability in the insurance sector and ultimately leads to support sustainable development in the State.
H.E. emphasized that the Authority is seeking to shift to the comprehensive quality of life for the insurance customers, by promptly processing and settling insurance claims, aiming to achieve the goals of the UAE Centennial 2071.This will be in light of the close association of different insurance products to the needs of citizens and residents .Moreover, The Financial Sector Development Program seeks to develop the financial sector and activate the electronic services to protect policyholders and beneficiaries through the settlement of claims and resolution of insurance disputes electronically and swiftly.
In his turn. Ebrahim Obaid Al Zaabi, Director General of the Insurance Authority affirmed that based on the Insurance Authority keenness to apply the principles oftransparency, impartiality and objectivity in the work of Insurance Dispute Resolution Committees, it has selected the chairpersons of the committees from the judiciary and the membership of its experienced and competent professionals.
Al Zaabi pointed out that Insurance Dispute Resolution Committees, since the activation of their work in early November of the past year succeeded to resolve (218) insurance disputes. The disputes varied among the classes of motor vehicle insurance, health insurance and life insurance. The Committee of Dubai had anumber of (162) disputes, while, Abu Dhabi Committee has a number of (56) disputes. The completion percentage for these disputes reached (70%) of the total disputes received. The duration required to decide in these disputes is approximately (15) days as from the date of reporting the dispute.
Al Zaabi pointed out the importance alternative solutions in settling insurancedisputes." The Dispute Resolution Committees in the Insurance Authority start their work by settling the dispute by reconciliation, if the parties agree to reconcile. Areconciliation report will be prepared and endorsed by the insurance committee. Thus, the report will become a professional executive evidence of the dispute. In the event of non-conciliation, the committee shall decide on the dispute and its decision shall be final and enforceable if appealed against before the first instance courts within 30 days pursuant to the provisions of Article No. (110) of the Federal Law No. (6) of 2007 concerning the Establishment of the Insurance Authority and the Organization of Insurance Operations and the amendments thereof.
The committees are competent to settle and adjudicate in all types and classes ofinsurance received from insured or beneficiaries or affected stakeholders against insurers, regardless of their value and whether they are estimated not. However, the committees are not competent entities for summery or interim proceedings or orders, precautionary seizure, disputes before the courts before 1/11/2019 or disputes subject to the arbitration clause. In addition to disputes submitted by an insurance company against another insurance company concerning the settlement of the due amounts between insurance companies.
The Insurance Authority affirms its continuous commitment to developing its services and dedicating its various capabilities, thus, contributing to the promptresolution of insurance disputes and protecting the rights of all parties.
The Authority is receiving complaints or insurance via its website (www.ia.gov.ae) using the Insurance Dispute Resolution Service.