"What insurance companies say about you" series: Your C.L.U.E. report
Have you ever wondered how your new car insurance company found out about the claim you filed when you drove through your garage door? You didn't tell them about it. How do they know these things?
Car insurance companies turn to a Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange, or C.L.U.E. report, provided by LexisNexis Risk Solutions to find out what claims have been filed in your name in the past seven years. When you apply for a new auto insurance policy, the insurer will generally check your C.L.U.E. report to see what other insurance companies reported about your car insurance claims.
You have a right to see what’s on your C.L.U.E. report, and ordering it is easy. I tried it out myself and wanted to see if it showed the two car insurance claims I’ve made. (You can also order a version that shows your home insurance claims.)
Here’s how to get yours: Go to LexisNexis and fill out a request form, create a membership profile and in a matter of seconds your report will be available for you to view and print. It took me less than two minutes from the first keystroke to delivery of my free report.
Reading a C.L.U.E. report
The C.L.U.E. report is easy to read, clearly showing the auto insurance company, the policy number under which the claim was filed, and the vehicle involved. The vehicle operator at the time of an accident is also listed, so you can't blame that dent on one of your kids anymore.
You’ll see details of how much was paid and under what policy coverage (i.e. liability, collision, uninsured motorist, etc.). In our most recent entry, we filed a claim for injuries my wife received when she was rear-ended while waiting for a light to change. Our insurer paid nothing, since they subrogated the claim to the other driver's insurance and collected from them.
Our other claim was a minor fender bender, for which our insurer paid out $1,442 to have a dent repaired under our collision coverage. In this case, the collision claim equaled an "at fault" claim and led to an increase in car insurance rates for us. There was no property damage to the other driver's bumper, so that line item was closed for $0.
Disputing your car insurance claims report
If you order your own C.L.U.E. report, review it carefully to make sure the information is accurate. If you want to dispute an entry, write LexisNexis with the details of your dispute. Its Web site told me to write to the address at the bottom of my report, but there isn't one listed there. I poked around the site, and after clicking on a couple of "Can I Dispute the Information?" links I found the address: LexisNexis Consumer Center, P.O. Box 105108, Atlanta, Georgia 30348-5108.
Once Lexisnexis receives your complaint, it will investigate and notify you of the results within 30 days. Inaccurate information should be removed, or you can request that a consumer statement be added to your report so that future viewers of your C.L.U.E. report will see your explanation.
The C.L.U.E. report is easy to order, easy to read and understand, and delivered in seconds. If you’ve ever wondered what your auto insurance company knows about you, here’s one way to find out. Want to know what else they have on you? Here’s how insurance companies decide if you’re a good person.