17:00 PM

Beneficiaries express high satisfaction with American Family Life Insurance Company's claims process

Study results reflect recent process improvements

(Madison, Wis.) —With life insurance, how you interact with and support a policyholder's beneficiaries through a claim while they're grieving the loss of a loved one represents a moment of truth.

A recent study LIMRA found 98 percent of American Family Life Insurance Company (AFLIC) beneficiaries are satisfied with how the Life Company handles claims. Seventy-six percent of respondents said they were "extremely satisfied" with their claims experience with AFLIC while 22 percent indicated they were "satisfied."

LIMRA surveyed beneficiaries from 14 major life insurers and their results are based on a survey of 6,089 life policy beneficiaries, including 349 from AFLIC.

Across the board, AFLIC's scores for customer interaction exceeded average scores among the companies included in the survey. Customer interaction was measured for ease of reaching company, responsiveness, care and compassion, knowledge and competence, courteousness and professionalism.

Interaction with American Family "much easier"

Overall, 46 percent of AFLIC beneficiaries indicated their interaction with our employees and agents was "much easier" compared to other administrative tasks. That compares to the study's average of 40 percent.

"These scores reflect the ease of doing business, promptness of paying death claims, ease of completing forms and the helpfulness of adjusters and agents answering beneficiaries' questions," says Mitch Dann, life claims manager.

Changing processes to become more customer friendly

The scores reflect work done by the Life Company in 2012 and 2013 to standardize processes and procedures for adjusters and simplify the forms beneficiaries receive in their claims packet, says Mitch.

"In the past, when we sent out the life claims packet to beneficiaries we asked them to call us or their agent to help them fill out the forms," says Mitch. "The forms were somewhat cumbersome and some beneficiaries found the language was confusing. We reformatted, simplified and eliminated some of our letters and forms to make the packet more customer friendly."

Another example of an improved process is beneficiaries now receive life insurance proceeds directly. "That has improved our responsiveness and ease and convenience," says Rose Hoffman, life in-force services manager and former life claims manager who oversaw life claims process changes. "On average we pay the death claims three days after we receive the completed forms."

Mitch says the Life claims unit continues to work to find opportunities to streamline processes and procedures and make them more customer friendly.

"These improvements were made possible through the combined efforts of our life claims adjusters, specialists and the life claims team," says Tim Rowe, life operations director. "The role of agents in this critical moment cannot be overstated and it contributes significantly to our high customer satisfaction. The handling of life claims truly is a team effort."

The LIMRA study found a direct correlation between customer satisfaction and willingness to do future business with the insurer. Among AFLIC beneficiaries surveyed, 55 percent said they were "very likely" to do business with the Life Company, compared with 40 percent of beneficiaries from other life companies.

Furthermore, 60 percent of AFLIC beneficiaries surveyed said they would recommend AFLIC to others, compared to 51 percent of beneficiaries from other life insurers included in the survey.

About American Family Insurance
Madison, Wis.– based American Family Insurance is the nation's third-largest mutual property/casualty insurance company and ranks 373rd on the Fortune 500 list. The company sells American Family-brand products, including auto, homeowners, life, business and farm/ranch insurance, through its exclusive agents in 19 states. American Family affiliates (The General, Homesite and AssureStart) also provide options for consumers who want to manage their insurance matters directly over the Internet or by phone. Web: www.amfam.com; Facebook: www.facebook.com/amfam; Twitter: www.twitter.com/amfam. Google+ plus.google.com/+amfam/

News media contact:
Sandra Spann
Media Relations
(608) 242-4100, ext. 32881