Insurance Department recovers $4.5 million in Sept. for consumers

The state Insurance Department set a monthly record in September by recovering $4.5 million for consumers who had disputed claims with their insurance companies, Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger announced Wednesday.

The total recovery for consumers from January through September is $13.2 million, compared with $13.6 million for all of 2008, Praeger said in a statement.

The amounts are based on payments made by insurance companies to customers who filed inquiries and complaints with the Insurance Department. The totals are above and beyond the amounts insurers originally offered their customers, Praeger's statement said.

Residents having problems with their insurance companies can call the Insurance Department's consumer hotline at 800-432-2484.