Practice Insurance. What can you do in the event of a dispute with your car insurer?

Whatever the dispute that may oppose you, there is a procedure to follow. You must first contact the company, be it an advisor, general agent, broker or customer service; the second step involves the insurance mediator and, as a last resort, the courts. All remedies are set out in the contract.

To signal your disagreement, you must send a registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt and this before the limitation period which, in this matter is two years. The limitation period is the period beyond which you can no longer exercise your rights.


Insurance mediation is carried out by someone outside the insurance company; it may be named in the contract. The association “The mediation of insurance” has 21 days to rule on the admissibility of your file. In principle, it will have to issue its opinion within 3 months, even if in practice this period can approach, in certain cases, 6 months. Photo DR

Explain the reasons

With your registered letter, attach all the necessary supporting documents to assert your rights. At this point, a transaction can end the dispute.

Unfortunately, if you don’t get an answer you’re satisfied with, you can contact the insurance claims department. Here again, the use of the registered letter is necessary (suspension of the offense of legal prescription).

It will again be necessary to explain the nature of the dispute and your request as well as all the useful documents. Keep track of your mail and attachments.

After the complaint, the mediator

The complaints department should respond to you within 2 months of receiving your letter. If you do not have an answer or if no amicable settlement of the dispute is possible, you can then contact the mediator free of charge.

This is the third stage of the rocket. Since September 1, 2015, insurance mediation has been simplified: the association “La Médiation de l’Assurance” provides policyholders with a single intermediary who is responsible for resolving the problem amicably. You can reach him by mail at: Mediation of insurance – TSA 50 110 – 75441 Paris Cedex 09.

Again, send your mail with all the documents (in copy), including your exchanges with the insurance.

In the event of litigation, if the amount of the claim exceeds €10,000, you will have to be represented by a lawyer at the Tribunal de Grande Instance.  Problem, faced with insurance, you are not sure to win… Photo DR

In the event of litigation, if the amount of the claim exceeds €10,000, you will have to be represented by a lawyer at the Tribunal de Grande Instance. Problem, faced with insurance, you are not sure to win… Photo DR

The recourse to justice

The mediator delivers his opinion within 3 to 6 months. If the decision does not suit you, you will still have the possibility of having your dispute settled by the courts. This litigation stage can only be initiated after having exhausted amicable remedies.

Up to an amount of €10,000, you have to go to the District Court; beyond that, it is the TGI (tribunal de Grande Instance) where you must be represented by a lawyer. But beware.

Under Article 700 of the Code of Civil Procedure, the losing party must reimburse the costs of the proceedings to the other. You may still have to find another insurer at the end of the procedure.

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