Our Arms Are Open When Those Good Hands Are Around Your Neck

If this is your first time reading my blog, you may not know how I feel about Allstate Insurance Company-

I personally think they are the worst automobile insurance company anyone could possible have, period.

Many articles and posts have been written about the company I commonly refer to as "Allsnake":

Don't get upset-get even. However, you need to know what you are up against and be willing to fight them to change this horrible disparity. We are here to help even the playing field. Call us today at 864-231-7171 or visit our website.  

A skit I put together based on my dealings with Allstate:

 

 

Allstate's Colossus Insurance Claim Software Exposed By Insider for Low Balling

I have been trying to tell everyone as loudly and as often as I can, Allstate Insurance Company is evil. Finally someone from within the Allsnake lair sought the warm sunlight through the confession of his sins against humanity while working as an employee of the snake.

Tony Bartelme, with The Post and Courier , reported "Storm of Money: Insider Tells How Some Insurance Companies Rig the System." The insider was actually an Allstate employee and I'm sure Mr. Bartelme was wanting to use a broad stroke but let's keep our eye on the head of this evil snake-Allstate.

Since it's hard enough to encourage people to read, I will provide very simple, concise, excerpts from the article for those individuals in a rush so that they may better visualize those good hands  wrapped around your throat:

  • Colossus is a program that calculates how much a person might be paid for an injury claim;
  • Mark Romano was the Allstate insider that came forward in the article and was considered Allstate’s Colossus “subject matter expert”;
  • Romano discovered that if he used Colossus the way Allstate did, he could save its new Encompass division millions of dollars by “turning the knobs” of the software — paying people less in claims than they would have otherwise gotten;
  • In South Carolina, for instance, CNA had divided the state into two territories — the “Liberal” area around Charleston and the “Conservative” region elsewhere. Allstate renamed the territories “Charleston” and “Palmetto.” By using Allstate’s Colossus tuning methods instead of CNA’s, Romano could reduce payments in the Palmetto region by 18 percent. Savings were even greater in the Charleston area — a 57 percent reduction. That meant the Allstate version of Colossus would turn a $10,000 claim in Charleston into a $4,300 payment!;
  • People were being hurt by Colossus, and it was tearing him apart. He couldn’t turn the knobs anymore;

I know you are already tired of reading the obvious points that are being made about how evil Allstate Insurance Company has been over the past few decades. Don't worry, it won't effect your life until you are violently, rammed by someone covered by Allstate. Then when you suffer through your injuries for months and an Allstate insurance adjuster enters your information into a computer software program, manipulated to low ball you,-you might just remember why I was jumping up and down while pointing. 

Imagine that, Romano even published a short report entitled, "Low Ball: An Insider’s Look at How Some Insurers Can Manipulate Computerized Systems to Broadly Underpay Injury Claims."

WAKE THE &^%^& UP CONSUMERS!, will be the title of my new book.

 

What Do You Know About Your Insurance Company?

If 100 people were polled about the the most important aspect of their insurance company, sadly 90 percent would say the cost, or price.  Yet, what good is paying insurance premiums if you are never going to be able to have peace of mind in the time you are in need of that insurance coverage? What? You never thought about actually having to use that insurance coverage?  

Automobile insurance is mandated by most states, homeowners and property insurance is mandated by most mortgaged backed lien holders. When your life insurance policy goes into effect you won't have to worry because you're dead but wouldn't it be comforting in your final days to know that your family will have no additional worries or hassles?

Then do your homework or just Google the insurance company you are thinking about engaging in coverage of your most valuable assets-you and your family! My friends ask me all the time what are the best insurance companies on my end to deal with. Of course I am jaded and cynical but there are those insurance companies that are fair and equitable. There are more that are inequitable and immoral but those are easy to find in an Internet search. Try Googling  "Allstate sucks" to see what comes up.

Chubb Insurance started a recent advertising campaign entitled,  "Who insures you doesn't matter. Until it does."  Chubb states the reason for this advertisement campaign:

A new corporate print advertising campaign reminds commercial and personal insurance purchasers and their agents and brokers that an insurer is only as good as its financial strength and its willingness to pay its claims in a fair, prompt and hassle-free manner.

The reason this campaign caught my attention in a recent magazine was not the headline but the photos. I have posted links to two of my favorite photos from their advertisements below. 

Be in the 90% of people that talk about insurance costs, not in monetary value, but intrinsic value that go much further in your time of need.

  1.  Picnic with bull;
  2. Golfing with alligator;

 

Related Articles:

 

South Carolina's Top Three Automobile Insurance Companies;

 

Nationwide Is Not On Your Side: Marketing Jingles are Flashy, Fictional, & Frustrating;

 

Would You Take Advice from the Devil on How to Get to Heaven?: Insurance Company Lies; and

 

Allstate Policy Holders and Victims Should Know They Are Not in Good Hands.

 

 

 

 

Will South Carolina Insured Drivers Benefit from New Technology Focused on Adjusting Premiums?

An article in Fast Company magazine by Malia Wollan entitled "Progressive Uses New Driver-Focused Technology to Determine Insurance Rates" initiated my contemplation into the vast depths insurance companies will begin to delve in an effort to enrich their already unfathomable net profit. 

The article describes a palm sized device named "Snapshot"  that is set up on a  wireless network and provides Progressive with real-time driving reports, to include the number and time of miles driven, incidents of hard braking or quick acceleration, and speed.

This may sound great from an insurance standpoint, but are you the consumer really gaining more by allowing your privacy to be invaded and having equal opportunity to both lower or raise your premiums? The selling point from Progressive's standpoint would be the lowering of premiums. However the the sword cuts on two sides, as Progressive's own Chief Executive Officer Glenn Renwick found out about his wife's driving:

In March, Renwick plugged a device called Snapshot into the on-board diagnostic computer in the couple's shared car... When he logged on to monitor the couple's stats, he saw "more hard brakes than I expected."

As the article aptly points out, "Luckily for Renwick, bad driving does not result in higher rates." Other hard nose bottom line insurance companies are hot on the technology trail with Allstate Insurance Company rolling out Drive Wise, a device similar to Snapshot, and GMAC Insurance  partnering up with OnStar to offer discounts to infrequent drivers willing to track their mileage through the in car service.

The true issue here is that insurance companies want someone to pay their premium and never have any claims. That is how they make money.

As Gregory Locraft with Morgan Stanley stated:

Insurance companies are always trying to find the little old lady who leaves her car in the garage.

 

 

 

RELATED ARTICLE:

 

How Do Insurance Companies Make Money?

 

 

 

Allstate Insurance Claims Process: My First Movie

After reading The Wall Street Journal's, "Animation Nation", article on Friday, February 11, 2011, I knew I had to give my Hollywood aspirations a shot. I put this video together using my experience over the past five years in dealing with insurance claims. No one insurance company sticks out more then Allstate because of the way they handle claims. Using Xtranormal, I felt I should put into pictures and words lessons to help those that may learn better through visual and auditory presentations.

Please watch and enjoy my very first movie, exclusively for use and copyrighted by Palmetto LDC, LLC:

 

Nationwide Is Not On Your Side: Marketing Jingles are Flashy, Fictional, & Frustrating

I had a client come in today with three young kids all under the age of 10 and all boys. They were tough to contain for her much less for my soon-to-be-married and "kidless" self. As I was informing my client's mother, who owned the car, on how she had been swindled out of depreciation from State Farm with her property settlement one of the boys yelled out in a melodic manner:

 "Nationwide is on your side..."

I quickly turned towards him with the indignation of an elementary teacher, ruler in hand and asked who taught him such lies and slander? All in the room looked perplexed but none more than him. I quickly indicated to him that he had been lied to and should never repeat such blasphemy. As if on cue, all three boys chimed in: "Nationwide is on your side..." 

At that point I realized what I was up against and what all Americans must face, mind numbing advertising that showers us night and day through all mediums of media.  Since the more money one entity or individual has the more exposure they will be able to give their flashy, fictional, and frustrating jingle or flat out lies......Yet at the same time I realized how effective such a childish and simplistically thought out plan can so easily massage and manipulate mainstream society.

Try not to let those insurance company jingles persuade you too much during this massive blitz of corporate marketing and advertising to get us consumers already in the mindset of spending to sell ourselves short of the true coverage and protection we need.  Be on the lookout for "Trey's Top Three" where I pick out:

  1. the top three insurance companies that treat injured parties fairly;
  2. the top three things you need to add or include with your insurance; and
  3. the top three insurance horror stories from this year.

 

To help get your mind off that previous jingle, think about this:

The only hands that come from Allstate are wrapped around your throat.

Or maybe since I have renamed one of our local adjusters "Low Ball":

Nationwide will chap your hide.

Don't worry, last one:

Like a drunk driver, State Farm doesn't care.

Colossus Saves Allstate Billions in Handling Automobile Accident Claims: So What's $10 Million?

Allstate, the evil empire, is the worst insurance company anyone could have for automobile insurance coverage. They are even worse when you are injured or harmed by one of their negligent insureds traveling on the roadways in South Carolina.  They have spent good money on formulating software that helps minimize the human interaction in claims adjusting and at the same time limit the monetary payout.

In comes New York State Insurance Superintendent James Wrynn, leading four other states into an investigation into Allstate's Colossus software. As reported by the New York State Insurance Department:

 “Allstate has agreed to implement procedures to ensure transparency and fairness for consumers who have bodily injury claims,” Wrynn said. “The new processes ensure that claims will be handled consistently in different regions of the country, and consumers will have the right to get the information they need in order to understand how Allstate evaluates their claims and make sure they are fairly treated.”

More importantly Allstate has to modify their claims handling process in the following manner:

 

  • Providing notice to claimants that the Colossus software program may be used in the adjustment of their bodily injury claims;
  • Enhancing its management oversight of Colossus to ensure that it adheres to established criteria and a uniform methodology in selecting claims to be used to “tune” or modify the software to reflect recently settled claims;
  • Strengthening its internal auditing of Colossus and bodily injury claims handling to ensure adherence to written guidelines and procedures;
  • Consolidating its bodily injury claims handling practices into a single claims handling manual; and
  • Not establishing a policy or rule requiring claims adjusters to settle bodily injury claims solely on the value recommended by Colossus and not providing incentives for claims adjusters to settle claims at or near the value recommended by Colossus.

You can see the full article entitled:

 

Allstate Agrees to $10 Million Regulatory Settlement Over Bodily Injury Claims Handling Processes

 

To read more articles about Allstate, please see:

Allstate Makes Me an Offer I Can't Refuse

It appears the behemoth insurance company, Allstate, does have some type of consumer conscious after all.  Through my repeated articles denouncing the insurance company for their unprofessional and unethical claims handling:

They have decided to hire me on as a consultant to change their brand awareness. They have offered me a salary into seven figures and 10% of any noticeable increase I can bring through higher premiums, less payouts, and lower defense fees.  Given that Allstate brought in $518 million in net income for the most recent 4th quarter of this recession, business is good!

More importantly they have allowed me the freedom of closing all their outstanding claims for minor wrecks, major wrecks, and anything under $10,000.00 in medicals by extending an offer of 3-4x your medical bills, plus $5,000.00 extra for your patience as they have surely yanked you around in the past couple months.  (For example, if your medical bills are $5,000.00, I can offer you $15,000.00 to $20,000.00 + $5,000.00 inconvenience charge--you choose the value you prefer).

All you have to do to get this settlement is mention to your adjuster that Allstate's new Positive Brand Awareness CEO, Floyd S. "Trey" Mills III said it was okay. It's time to enjoy your freedom and move on with your lives. Let us rejoice with this new conscious of such a formerly evil company.

Best wishes with your settlements on this, the 1st of April, commonly referred to as "April Fool's Day".

Allstate Policy Holders and Victims Should Know They Are Not in Good Hands

In legal circles, insurance circles, and amongst colleagues of both sides of the coin, plaintiffs and defendants,  there is an on going understanding of how awful Allstate Insurance claims adjusting and case evaluations are in comparison with reality and fairness. 

I tell everyone that comes in my office how bad Allstate Insurance company is when it comes to providing a fair or reasonable offer on their personal injury claim. Again, truth is an absolute defense to any potential libel or slander claims so I want to put forth the TRUTH about Allstate:

  1. Insurance adjusters for other insurance companies have resolved their portion of a claim with me and said, "Good luck"; "I wouldn't want to deal with them", "I don't see how they haven't been shut down by the state", in reference to resolving the other portion of the claims with Allstate;
  2. I have been told by an Allstate insurance adjuster that regardless of what my client's treating physicians said they were not paying the claim because she didn't think my client was hurt. (She may have had a college degree but no medical training or certification);
  3. Allstate insurance representatives (in SC) have openly discussed with me how bad the company is run, how ridiculous the claims process is for them to get any authority, and how a machine (Colossus) tells what your claim is worth, not a person;
  4. Allstate adjusters have told my clients (prior to my representation), that they can't possibly be hurt because of the collision they were in and need to settle the case because an attorney can't help them;
  5. A year or two ago they use to have a system to try and move cases and it didnt matter what happen or what injuries the client received. It was based solely on medical bills. From $0-2,500 they would offer $500; $2,500-7,500 a $1,000 and so on but no more than $2,000 regardless of the amount;
  6. I have had numerous cases where they offered to settle for less than or equal to the medical bills and then I file suit and go through the litigation motions only to settle for a reasonable value and absolutely no facts, medical bills, or circumstances arose that would merit such an increase other than the fact, I filed suit.  (one such instance was so ridiculous that my client had a $15,000 offer and absolutely nothing changed but litigation was initiated--we settled for nearly half a million); and
  7. More than half a dozen defense attorneys I work with have made this specific statement when discussing Allstate cases, "Well Trey, you know this is Allstate........."  (No other insurance company is mentioned in that regard).

Why do I hate Allstate Insurance Company so much?

  • I do not believe they conduct their insurance practice in good faith;
  • Their commercials grate on every nerve I have when I know how poorly they treat their own insureds (what you are if you have Allstate Insurance), much less victims injured by their insureds; and
  • Consumers (you if you buy anything) are not educated on the front line about what they are buying and then they are being taken advantage of by their own insurance companies.

My solution:

  1. I have decided to fight Allstate regardless of the time, resources, and value on the claim;
  2. I educate every person I see, regardless if they become a client, on insurance and how bad Allstate conducts claims;
  3. I remain an active voice for those that have been deceived, manipulated, talked down to, and dejected by uninformed, uneducated, and ignorant Allstate representatives; and
  4. I blog when my blood pressure gets sky high because an Allstate adjuster just offered me $1,200 over medical bills of $12,800 and did not dispute that their insured was at fault or the injuries my client received. When I asked the reasoning for the offer and he gave some BS answer I made the comment that I don't know why I even ask anymore and he said, and I quote verbatim, "Yeah, I don't know either. I came from another claims office and it just seems like a waste of time."

I am always open to hearing the other side of this issue or in lieu of no one having anything good to say about Allstate either, more war stories of how bad they are. 

 

Maui is the Perfect Place for a Conference and Vacation

Not all life is pain and injury. Sometimes you get to take advantage of your hard work and dedication. Or as the Bible states in Psalm 128:2, " You will eat the fruit of your labor, blessings and prosperity will be yours."  As a member of the American Association of Justice (AAJ) I was invited to a conference in Maui, HI. This being my fifth year as a plaintiffs' lawyer I felt the time was good for a little vacation and working conference.

The lineup is always amazing for the AAJ Conference and the talented, experienced, and world renown lawyers that were on hand helped motivate this younger, yet driven attorney. Its always good to draw on the passion I have to fight against the evil insurance companies, ie (Allstate, Selective, Sentry, Progressive, State Farm, and many more) and to see that passion in practicing attorneys of 30 years or more is energizing. As an evil insurance hater in Anderson, South Carolina you can sometimes feel like an island but when you rekindle that hatred for wrong doers amongst other successful lawyers around the country you are reminded that you are on the right path.

If you ever get to Maui for a vacation to relax, rejuvenate, and/or reflect here are things I recommend from a nonworking perspective:

  1. Old Lahaina Luau- A great look into Maui's history and to the Hawaiian way of life in general. Not as commercialized as other advertised luaus and the food was amazing. Plus if you like to drink the price includes all you can eat and drink. The location is right on the ocean and reservation are a plus.
  2. Sail Triology- Both the book I bought and friends that went before us recommended this tour for snorkeling. On the day we went we actually had the founder on the boat, got to see the sun rise, saw a twin whale breach, heard whales underwater while snorkeling, had fantastic food, and smooth sailing. A must do excursion.
  3. Road to Hana- this was made more delightful by not driving personally and not having to return back on the same day by car. It has been named the "Divorce Highway" by locals because of the toll the winding roads and one way bridges take on a couple.  Simply beautiful, historic, and breathtaking. So hard to describe but is a must do. We drove there and took a helicopter ride back touring the waterfalls and the volcano, Haleakala.
  4. Old Lahaina Grill-not sure how we found this on the first night but it was great. Others bragged about Mama's Fish House but we felt it was overrated and overpriced. You can't beat the location of Mama's Fish House but I think you can beat the food. A runner up in the food area was the Waterfront Restaurant- simple, affordable, and good.

I have been blessed to travel to many places in my short life of 32 years and I encourage others to do the same because you never know what life has in store for you. As a 14 year leukemia survivor I dont wait on my retirement to visit the places I want to see. I see them as soon as possible and check them off the list I made shortly after cancer.

Visit Hawaii. Check.

 

 

 

2009 South Carolina Personal Injury Articles in Review

I started blogging back in November of 2008 therefore with the closing of the 2009 calendar year, this will be my first (1st) full year in review.

There is little doubt from my background, occupation, and particular writing style that I hate insurance companies. I have highlighted those articles I wrote throughout the 2009 year that provide the biggest return on investment for my readers. I hope that you have enjoyed reading my blog, regardless of your own personal beliefs and opinions, as there are always two sides to any issue.  

South Carolina Foreclosure Sale: My Personal Experience

Given the current economic climate and the many more foreclosures I feel will be coming on the market in the first quarter of 2010, this is a good read for those of you thinking houses are bought for $1.

What Can I Do About Property Damage to my Car After a Wreck?

Numbers speak for themselves and more than likely you will be involved in a wreck. If the wreck is bad enough to cause any property damage you do not necessarily need a lawyer.

South Carolina Property Arbitration for Depreciation, Loss of Use, & Actual Damages

This article goes into more depth than the one above when the insurance company jerks you around over something so easy to determine value such as property.

Dogs Bite, Owners Pay: South Carolina Dog Bite Law

There is no one bite rule in South Carolina. This is strict liability and if your dog bites someone else anticipate some insurance payout.

Insurance Companies Don't Care About You: They Care About Your Premiums

I say what others think and know. This is no different and you should understand the logistics.

Allstate Insurance's "Good Hands" are Wrapped Around Your Throat!

They are awful. The worst insurance company you could possibly use in my personal opinion. I can tell war stories against Allstate for days on cases I had just in 2009. Please stop letting such blatant insurance abuse happen by using the worst insurance company out there.

Insurance Claim Game: 10 Tips to Follow

When you are injured in an automobile wreck these tips may help you avoid having to hire an attorney on a smaller case. 

Tips for Young Lawyers on Being Trial Lawyers

After four full years of practicing and being thrown into a trial the first couple months as a lawyer, I guess I have learned some things. I am just excited to still call myself a young lawyer at 31.

Graduation Speech for Mid-Carolina High School 2009

I was blessed and honored to come back to my high school and give the commencement speech.

F___ You If You Have Never Had Cancer!

After my uncle was diagnosed with cancer and started his battle earlier in the year a flow of emotions and memories were brought back from my experience some 14 years ago. Sorry for the language but it was what I was feeling at the time.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

Happy Anniversary to South Carolina Injury Law Journal

I started this blog with no idea what to expect or how I would have the time to write articles.  However, I went ahead with it by contacting LexBlog and getting the infrastructure in place.  My first article was "China Tries to Kill Pebbles" on November 2, 2008. It has been good times ever since. 

The traffic count and interest has grown exponentially and it allows me an opportunity to fight the barrage of poor media, misinformation, and misleading advertising that many insurance companies conduct.  It also levels the playing field for me to give an inside look at what really goes on in the plaintiff's battle against evil insurance companies

It should be apparent from a large percentage of my posts that:

  • I hate Allstate and think they are unprofessional, unethical, and ignorant;
  • I am cancer survivor and both celebrate and struggle with that;
  • I work in upstate South Carolina   and focus first on statewide issues and then on national issues;
  • I enjoy being a plaintiff's attorney because I enjoy working with normal, everyday people and not corporate clients that are buffoons;
  • I love to fight, more in the courtroom than out of it in my older years; and
  • Thanks to my life experiences (cancer, death of a parent, and internal struggles with those issues); I think I can achieve most anything with hard work, thought, and communication.

Thanks for stopping in for a quick read, interesting article, and/or for being a groupie of South Carolina Injury Law Journal.  It's only going to get better, more informative, and more insightful.

 

Take it away "Little River Band".........

 

Allstate Insurance Sucks

Dealing with Allstate on a routine basis for personal injury claims, I know how they frustrate me to no end.  However, I was interested to see the amount of Google entries for this title.

Are you really in good hands? Or should you consult an attorney anytime you see a name followed by the word "insurance"?