Many drivers in the U.S. are “clueless” about a report that could dramatically affect their car insurance quotes: The C.L.U.E. Report. What appears on the report determines how much you pay for car insurance or if you can get a policy.
The auto version of the Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (C.L.U.E.) report gives auto insurers a look at up to seven years of your history of car insurance losses and claims. A company called LexisNexis Risk Solutions produces these reports.
What Is a C.L.U.E. Report?
United Policyholders, a nonprofit advocacy group for insurance consumers, explains that C.L.U.E. is a nationwide database that most — but not all — auto and home insurers tap into so they can share information about the loss and claim histories of current, past and potential customers.
Insurers submit information to the C.L.U.E. database about their own customers. They also pull information that other insurers contribute about their own customers.
According to the Washington state insurance commissioner’s website, a car insurer might review your C.L.U.E. report when you request a quote or apply for coverage. The company uses your loss and claim history to determine if you’re eligible for coverage and how much your premium will be.
The Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance says a car insurer that participates in C.L.U.E. will report all claims for which it:
- Pays out money
- Sets up a file for a possible claim
- Denies a claim
“Consumers should be aware that contacting their company or their agent to discuss an actual loss might be considered reporting a claim, even if the company does not end up making a claim payment,” according to the Vermont Department of Financial Regulation.
Why Auto Insurers Check Your C.L.U.E. Report
Simply put, they’re trying to figure out how much of a financial risk you are.
“Insurance company studies show a relationship between past and future claims,” according to the Washington insurance commissioner’s website.
The reason insurers check your loss and claim history is to try to reduce their financial risk. Chances are, your insurance rate will be lower if the insurer determines you’re a good risk and not a bad one.
Insurers typically use C.L.U.E. to underwrite (evaluate the risk) and rate (or set a price for) new policies. But they typically don’t use it for policies that are up for renewal, according to the Connecticut Insurance Department.
What Auto Insurers Can See on Your C.L.U.E. Report
The Washington insurance commissioner’s office says a C.L.U.E. report for auto insurance contains:
- Your name
- Your date of birth
- Policy number
- Date of each loss
- Type of each loss
- Amount the company paid for each loss
- Description of the vehicle involved in each loss
- Details about denied claims
The Vermont Department of Financial Regulation notes that only your car and home insurance claims and losses appear in the C.L.U.E. database. For example, information from sources such as credit reports, criminal records, and court documents is not included.
Who Can Get a C.L.U.E. Report
Under federal law, you can get one free copy of your C.L.U.E. report each year. You can obtain it on the LexisNexis website or by calling 866-312-8076.
United Policyholders says reviewing your C.L.U.E. report allows you to spot errors in your claim history that could increase your insurance rates and correct them.
“Inaccurate or incomplete data included in a report is likely to surface only after you get turned down for insurance. At this point, you, the consumer, assume the burden of proving the data wrong,” according to the nonprofit Privacy Rights Clearinghouse.
The Privacy Rights Clearinghouse says that your C.L.U.E. report can affect your insurance premium and the ability to even get coverage.
“C.L.U.E. can be a great resource for consumers who are charged high rates or denied coverage,” said Michael Humphreys, Tennessee’s assistant insurance commissioner, in a press release. “An insured consumer can resolve inaccuracies on their report that could be contributing to higher rates.”
How to Repair Errors on a C.L.U.E. Report
Robert Linkonis, president and CEO of credit repair service Credit Restoration Associates, says you can dispute any discrepancies. Therefore, if you come across an error, such as the wrong date or dollar amount for a car insurance claim, you should file a dispute with LexisNexis.
“Since this data affects the consumer’s insurance premium, they have the right to challenge it and demand accuracy,” Linkonis says.