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.

 

 

 

 

South Carolina's Top Three Automobile Insurance Companies

"Trey's Top Three" continues with this second article to determine the top three insurance companies I believe evaluate and handle their claims in a professional, ethical, and reasonable manner. This analysis is based on my observations, experiences, and interactions over five years working in the trenches against these insurance companies: Direct Insurance, State Farm, Allstate, Travelers, Nationwide, Dairyland Auto, Selective Insurance, Specialty Risk Services, Liberty Mutual, GMAC, Infinity, Farm Bureau, Auto Owners, Sentry, Occidental, Chubb, Bristol, Sedgwick, GEICO, Progressive, Viking, Great Central, Gateway, USAA, Safeco, Ohio State Casualty, James C. Green, AIGGreat Falls, Crawford & Co, Horace Mann, Lancer Insurance, Affirmative, Cottonstates, Zurich, Scottsdale, Cinncinati, Companion, Montgomery Insurance, Frontier Adjusters, Gallagher Bassett, First Acceptance, Constitutional State Services Foremost, Assurance, Penn National,and others I cant recall at this moment. (I have settled claims against all these companies).

And the winners of "Trey's Top Three" evaluation are:

  1. State Farm
  2. Farm Bureau
  3. Nationwide/Travelers*  (tied)

 

If you have Allstate please switch immediately as ALLSTATE IS THE WORST insurance company you could be with. When you go in and switch or modify your coverage make sure you have:

  • PIP/Medpay
  • UIM

 

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.

Insurance Claim Game: 10 Tips to Follow

I hate to reveal the secrets of personal injury litigation that help me reduce my student loan debt and feed the families of my staff.  However, I was given a second chance at life for a reason and that reason could be to educate you on not getting screwed by your insurance company or an at fault party's insurance company.

As with any legal endeavor the most important factors are the facts and circumstances surrounding the issue, or problem. Each case is different and there is no universal answer for every case. These are the most basic rules I could think of without leading you astray.

  1. Liability/Contributor to Negligence- Who? What? Where? When? and How Many?  are questions you need to identify in regards to how you incurred the damages, either personal or property, with your claim.
  2. James K. Ferrell of the Memphis Injury Law Blog gives a great 10 Step Guideline to follow after an automobile accident. No need for me to recreate the wheel. I would just replace #10 with "Call Me".
  3. Ken Dolan of Dolans.com has an article entitled "How to Win the Claim Game" for property claim tips.
  4. Pictures are worth a 1,000 words- take them of the area in question, pot hole, car wreck, broken porch, malfunctioning product, dog biting you, etc.
  5. Devil is in the Details- Do not, I repeat, DO NOT trust what insurance claims adjusters tell you. Insurance adjusters work for the insurance company. DING, DING, DING. That means they are not looking out for your interest but their employer’s interest.
  6. Yesterday, I had a client come in that had been in a rear end collision and he went to visit with the Farm Bureau adjuster for that at fault driver. The Farm Bureau adjuster offered the gentleman a check for $215.00 for ALL CLAIMS arising out of the accident.  My client was savvy enough to realize that his car alone may have more damage than $215.00 much less the Emergency Room visit, several follow up appointments with his family care doctor, and the MRI that he was sent for in regards to his neck pain.
  7. Another time, I had a client hit while exiting a school bus. The Nationwide Adjuster was looking for his parents that night and offered them $700.00 to settle his claim. My client had just gotten back from the ER and referred to an orthopedist for his leg.  I ended up getting them more than $10,000.00.
  8. Why do insurance adjusters do this? If they can get you to take a check for $215.00 now before you realize the true extent of your injuries they just saved their company tens of thousands of dollars. 
  9. Once you sign the adjuster's form you have just signed your rights away against the at fault party. Read my Can You Read? article
  10. Consult Someone that Does this for a Living- don’t ask your friend, mama, daddy, boss man, insurance adjuster for the insurance company, or Joe the Plumber. Ask someone that handles these type of cases. Reference my Do I need a Doctor, Lawyer, or Preacher articles.
           a.    When I needed to remodel my foreclosure home, I called a contractor.
           b.    When my Tahoe breaks down, I call a mechanic.
           c.    When I hurt my arm in a wreck, I consulted a doctor.
           d.    When my tooth hurts, I go to the dentist.