China Life Insurance has received close to 150 insurance claims, which include 97 casualty and 26 death claims from south western China, following the May 12 earthquake, Xinhua News has reported.

According to the company, the combined compensation payments from affected areas such as Sichuan, Shaanxi, Yunnan, Gansu and Chongqing, were estimated at CNY134 million by May 14. The insurer is reported to have settled 26 claims already.

China Life’s estimates place the number of people insured in the quake-hit areas at 110,000, which also includes 58,000 students. Insurance analysts claim that the company is likely to pay about CNY700 million in life insurance claims arising from the quake.

The insurer is reported to have put its staff on a 24-hour duty to handle claims in a timely manner and announced that the company would be paying for all the living costs of those orphaned in the quake until they turn 18. The China Insurance Regulatory Commission too has reportedly urged insurance companies to simplify the claims process for quake victims.