For failing to refund money despite guidelines of Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA), District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum, SAS Nagar directed an insurance company, on Monday, to pay Rs 25,000 as compensation for deficiency in services to an agriculturist residing in Sambhalki village, in Kharar.
"Withholding of valuable property of the complainant in contravention of the mandatory guidelines/notification by the insurance company amount to deficiency in service," ruled the forum, in its order on December 30, directing Aviva Life Insurance Company, to refund Rs 94,008 with 9% interest from February 2011 till realisation, for deficiency in services.
Prem Chand, the complainant, moved consumer forum saying that in January 2010 he had purchased an insurance policy for a short duration of three years as promised by the insurance company with one-time premium.
Chand said after paying one premium, he was told that the policy had a span of 20 years. Unwilling to continue the policy, he sought refund. He alleged that the proposal forms did not disclose any option regarding a free look period of 15 days which is against the IRDA guidelines.
Aviva Life Insurance Company, in its written reply, submitted that the complainant had got the policy documents which stipulates 15-day free look period and if he was not satisfied, he would have availed the benefit of free look period. The company also replied that since Chand had failed to avail the free look period, therefore, he was not entitled for any refund. Hence, there was no deficiency in service on the part of the insurance firm in terms of non-refund of his money.