We’re all familiar with the idea and impact of a credit report, but did you know there’s a similar report used to track your insurance history? A C.L.U.E. report is a lesser-known record compiled by the insurance industry to keep track of claims you file.
Insurance companies look at your report to determine how risky it is to protect your property and how much they’ll charge you for coverage.
In this article, we’ll answer some important questions about your C.L.U.E. report, including:
- What Is a C.L.U.E. Report?
- What Does a C.L.U.E. Report Include?
- Who Can See a C.L.U.E. Report?
- How Can You Get Your C.L.U.E. Report?
- What Can You Do If Your C.L.U.E. Report is Inaccurate?
What Is a C.L.U.E. Report?
A Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (C.L.U.E.) report contains information on auto and home insurance claims made within the last five to seven years. When you file a claim, your insurers documents details like the claim date, type and payout amount. LexisNexis — a research firm — collects the data and generates C.L.U.E. reports, “to drive more informed underwriting.”
What Does a C.L.U.E. Report Include?
There are three types of C.L.U.E. reports: auto, property, and commercial.
A C.L.U.E. auto report includes info on personal automobile claims, and a C.L.U.E. property report shows info on personal property claims. These reports share details about any claim(s) disclosed by insurers, including the:
- Claim date
- Claim location
- Claim number
- Claim cause/type of loss
- Name of insurance company
- Insurance policy number
- Amount paid by insurer
C.L.U.E. auto reports include car details like the year, make, model and vehicle identification number (VIN) of any car associated with you. And your report will also include identifying information about you such as your name, date of birth, known email addresses, phone numbers, residential addresses and may even contain education and professional license records.
If you’ve never made an insurance claim, you’ll most likely have a claims-free report. But sometimes C.L.U.E. reports can contain inaccurate information.
C.L.U.E. commercial reports provide details for commercial lines claims. In insurance, commercial lines are simply insurance coverages for businesses instead of individuals. According to LexisNexis, a C.L.U.E. commercial report “may not be used in whole or in part as a factor in determining eligibility for credit, insurance, employment or another permissible purpose…” for individuals.
Who Can See a C.L.U.E. Report?
LexisNexis relies on insurance companies to share claims data in order to generate C.L.U.E. reports. And every company that contributes C.L.U.E. data can also view the data on your C.L.U.E. report.
This means if you’re insured by a company that doesn’t report to LexisNexis, any claims you file with that insurer will not show up on your C.L.U.E. report. But according to the company, more than 99% of auto insurers and 96% of home insurers provide claims data for C.L.U.E. reports.
Additionally, consumers can access reports on themselves and their property, and insurance agents may have access to your C.L.U.E. report. Let’s look at when and why each group might access your report.
In addition to sharing their claims data with LexisNexis, insurance companies can search through claims information provided by other insurers and access individual C.L.U.E. reports. Typically, insurance companies use C.L.U.E. reports to underwrite new policies. Seeing claims history when underwriting new policies helps the companies determine how risky it is to take on new customers.
Insurers view people who have filed claims in the past as more likely to file again in the future, so premiums are typically higher for people with past claims on their C.L.U.E. report. You can read about other factors that influence how much you pay for insurance here.
Along with insurers, individuals can access C.L.U.E. reports to see claims data for their property. Checking your C.L.U.E. report might be a good idea if you’re shopping for new insurance and want to be sure companies give you fair quotes based on your history. Or if you’re selling your home, a C.L.U.E. report can help potential buyers feel good about your property.
But if you just want to see what your C.L.U.E. report says, you can do that too! I’ve included the steps for requesting your C.L.U.E. report below.
How Using C.L.U.E. Reports Can Benefit Home Sellers
If you’re putting your house on the market, money expert Clark Howard says that pulling a property C.L.U.E. report is a good idea.
“If you’re trying to sell your home, why not request the free personal property report on your residence and make it available for prospective buyers to see? That way they know there’s no hidden damage that you made an insurance claim about but didn’t otherwise disclose. It’s peace of mind for a buyer.”
When selling your home, you can request a C.L.U.E. Home Seller’s Disclosure Report. Unlike an individual report, this copy will not include your personal information. Instead, potential buyers will just be able to see the claims history over the last five years.
Of course, the potential buyer may get the property inspected as a condition of purchase — as Clark recommends in step #7 of his How To Buy a House in 9 Steps guide. But having the C.L.U.E. report handy is just another way to ensure they’re not buying a property with a history of problems. The C.L.U.E. report would then give the potential buyer an idea of the rates they would get from their insurance quote if they want to insure the house.
How Can You Get Your C.L.U.E. Report?
You can request a free copy of your consumer disclosure report once every 12 months. To do so online, access the LexisNexis Consumer Portal. From the Consumer Portal, you will be asked to provide the following personal information:
- Full name
- Resident address
- Email (optional)
- Social security number
- Phone number
- Date of birth
- Driver’s license number
- Driver’s license state
Once you’ve provided the required information, you’ll see an acknowledgement message confirming your request has been received.
You can also be order your report by mail or phone. Click here for instructions on requesting reports through the U.S. mail or via phone. You must be the owner of the home or vehicle on which you’re requesting a report. You cannot ask for a report on a car or property you’re thinking about buying.
Here’s What Happened When I Requested My C.L.U.E. Report
I requested a copy of my C.L.U.E. report online following the steps above and got a confirmation email immediately. So even though your email address is optional, I recommend including it if you’d like confirmation of your request.
Four days later, I got a letter in the mail from Consumer Service Center. The letter included my consumer number, a case number, and instructions for accessing my Disclosure Report through a one-time URL and provided PIN. The letter notes the one-time URL and PIN expire in 30 days.
From my one-time URL, I was asked to enter my PIN and complete an image verification to confirm that I’m not a robot. Then, I had to enter the PIN one more time to open PDF disclosure report. You can save the PDF, just be sure to save your PIN too since it’ll save as a password protected document.
I was surprised my report was 122 pages since I’ve thankfully never had to report a loss. The first half of my report included personal records like past addresses, phone numbers and even email addresses that were “collected when the Consumer registered to receive correspondence from online marketing sources.” A lot of space was also taken up by pages titled “How To Read Your Report,” which include sample reports to help you better understand your own.
What Can You Do If Your C.L.U.E. Report Is Inaccurate?
If you find inaccurate information — such as incorrect payments or even invalid claims — on your C.L.U.E. report, you can contact LexisNexis and dispute any errors.
Once you alert LexisNexis of any errors, the company will open an inquiry and contact the insurance company who handled the claim in question. They’ll conduct an investigation and you’ll be updated on your dispute within 30 days. If LexisNexis doesn’t agree to change the information, they’ll explain why they believe the disputed information is correct.
P.O. Box 105108
Atlanta, GA, 30348-5108
If your insurer reports to C.L.U.E., any claim you file — including claims that they don’t end up paying you for — will go on your report. So even if you don’t receive payment on a loss, filing a claim can negatively impact how insurers see you in the future.
Since insurance companies use your C.L.U.E. report to determine how much to charge you for coverage, it’s important to know when you should file a claim and when filing might not be worth it.
But C.L.U.E. reports can also help individuals making big decisions. If — for example — you’re looking to buy a home, ask the seller for the C.L.U.E. Home Seller’s Disclosure Report. This will give you a better picture of events such as flooding, break-ins, or any other recently reported losses on the property.