Fed up? Here are steps to take

So you want to file a complaint against your insurance company? Here’s how to do it:

• Deal with your insurance company first. In many cases, it’s not necessary to file a complaint.

• If it’s a dispute about a claim, make sure you read and understand your policy first.

• Make sure you have a good reason for filing a complaint:

Improper denial or delay in the settling of a claim.

Illegal termination, cancellation or alteration of a policy.

Misconduct by an agent or broker; illegal or unethical sales practices.

• Visit your state’s insurance department Web site, or call its consumer division. Information on the Web site can help you decide whether you should file a complaint, and whether your company has been cited before.

In Kansas: go to or call 1-(800) 432-2484

In Missouri: go to or call 1-(800) 726-7390.

• You can submit a complaint in writing or over the Internet.

• Be aware that the state could contact the insurance company. Be prepared to submit your insurance information and any pertinent names, dates and background as part of the complaint.

• Be patient; it may take some time for state investigators to get back to you.

• If you’re still not satisfied, contact an attorney to see if anything else can be done. If you have concerns about how your complaint was handled, contact the insurance commissioner, your state lawmaker or the governor’s office.