It’s no secret that claims management is a key indicator of customer service. A Consumer Reports' reader survey revealed 86% of readers who filed were highly satisfied with the handling of their claims among 22 insurance companies.

Based on the experiences of 28,241 respondents who filed claims that were settled or rejected from January 2006 to June 2009, the survey results reflect overall satisfaction with claims handling. A score of 100 would mean all readers were completely satisfied; 80, very satisfied, on average; 60, fairly well satisfied.

Availability for some insurers is limited by region or policyholder eligibility rules. All 22 rated companies scored well with an 81 or higher, but some did better than others, notes Consumer Reports. Among the highest-rated were NJM Insurance Group (New Jersey Manufacturers Insurance Company), USAA Group, Amica Mutual Group, and Auto-Owners Insurance Group of Companies, with overall satisfaction scores of 92 or higher. Customers for all four companies had relatively few problems with their claims.

Overall consumers indicated that 25% of claims took more than two weeks for payment to be received.

The survey results were released in conjunction with a promotion put forth by Consumer Reports for its October issue, which includes tips to help consumers find the most appropriate auto insurance coverage for the best price.

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