Car insurance and homeowners insurance companies determine your premiums in part based on a CLUE Report. It stands for Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange report and it is very similar to your credit report in that it consolidates a lot of information and sells it to the property and casualty insurance companies. There are separate scores for auto and home insurance.
CLUE reports are compiled by ChoicePoint and while the information they provide to insurers doesn’t determine your eligibility for auto or home insurance, it certainly can have an impact on how high your premiums are. But remember, the CLUE database is maintained by an information vendor, not another insurance company.
ChoicePoint pulls together information about your prior claims history as well as your credit history to develop the number they provide to insurers. You can purchase your own CLUE report score for about $12.95 by calling (888) 497-0011 or by writing:
Attn: FACT Act Request
PO Box 105295
Atlanta, GA 30348
How do insurance companies get information for the CLUE report?
- Insurance companies send information about past claims and inquiries about coverage into ChoicePoint’s database. They might also include inquiries you made about potential claims, even if you didn’t file them. These are sometimes referred to as “claims without payment.”
- If you file a claim on your homeowners insurance policy, the company adds this information to the database.
- If you apply for insurance with another company, the new insurance company can access the CLUE database and learn of your past claims.
Although no claims filed more than five years ago are included, CLUE includes information about inquiries you make, even if a claim was never submitted or paid. Some states prohibit this practice. To find out if your state is one that prohibits it, contact your state insurance agency. You can find your state’s insurance contact information at www.naic.org/state_web_map.htm.
What’s a good CLUE score?
ChoicePoint’s scores go as high as 997 and like your credit score, the higher the better.
|776 – 997||Good|
|626 – 775||Average|
|501 – 625||Below Average|
|Less than 500||Undesirable|
Why is 997 the high score? I have no idea.
How long does information stay on my CLUE report?
Just like with your credit report, federal laws regulate when and how things drop off your CLUE report. Collections and missing a payment will stay on your report for 7 years, bankruptcy will remain for 10 years and unpaid tax liens for 15 years.
Inquiries have an affect too – they stay on your report for 2 – 5 years.
Are CLUE report scores and credit scores related?
Not really, though your credit score may be embedded into your CLUE report. Each score has a different focus, credit scores generally focus on your payment history while CLUE report scores focus on your claims history with cars or your home.
Why do insurers use CLUE reports?
Insurance companies use your CLUE report for the same reason that credit card companies and other lenders use your FICO score: they’re looking for stability in how you manage your affairs.. Just like credit issuers want to know that you’ve responsibly managed your credit for an extended period of time, insurance companies want to know that you haven’t filed multiple (and questionable) claims on your car insurance or homeowners insurance.
What if I find an error in my CLUE report?
Contact ChoicePoint and provide them with appropriate supporting documentation. You also have the option of adding a personal statement to your CLUE report to explain your side to any negative entries on your report. When you challenge your CLUE report, ChoicePoint will verify the information with the company that submitted it and get back with you within 30 days (very similar to FICO).
Some consumer groups have expressed concern about the amount of power ChoicePoint and other companies providing information about you without your knowledge have. Since you can be declined for coverage without knowing why, CLUE reports may soon catch the eye of more legislators.