Many consumers learn the hard way that the "Good Hands" people are not always so good in fair claims handling practices. While Allstate Insurance Company consistently claims that it is high quality insurance, it has consistently low ratings from Trial Lawyers who represent consumers in claims with Allstate and other insurers. In fact, Allstate's reputation is consistently among the lowest ratings of insurance companies by members of the American Justice Association. Allstate has also rated poorly by Consumer Reports and the American Customer Satisfaction Index. This writer for instance dropped Allstate after it tried to circumvent Florida law preventing an insurer from raising rates when the insured is not at fault in the accident by including roadside assistance claims as paid claims. I ended up not suing them only because I got better insurance for less elsewhere including for less than before they tried to raise my rates. This is just the tip of the iceberg.
So it is surprising that Allstate has a new marketing effort to bolster its image in claims handling. Allstate now advertises a claim satisfaction guarantee . According to Allstate's documents, "If you're not happy with how your Allstate car insurance claim goes — for any reason — Allstate will give you credit on your premium for up to six months." The satisfaction guarantee also does not apply in many states and as of the writing of this blog, the guarantee was listed on the Allstate website as not available in Florida. One wonders why Allstate is advertising the claim guarantee in media in Florida and other markets if it is not available in those markets?
It is not clear from the advertisements if the "unhappiness" applies only to claims made by its own insureds where they are making a claim themselves or if it also applies to insureds who are unhappy because of the way Allstate handled claims made against them. For example, where improper claims procedures by Allstate could result in personal financial liability to the Allstate insured above the policy limits. For instance, if Allstate were to refuse to settle a claim when it could and should have settled under the circumstances to protect its own insured from liability and the insured ends up with personal liability does the claim satisfaction guarantee apply?
For questions or for guarantee issues contact Allstate at:
Allstate Insurance, CSG
P.O. Box 11904
Roanoke, VA 24022-9933
We hope that Allstate realizes that families put their trust in Allstate in their times of greatest need. Up to now, consumer satisfaction surveys seems to suggest that Allstate believes slick TV ads trump customer satisfaction. Let us hope that they truly offer meaningful discounts for unsatisfied customers or, even better, that they offer satisfying services to the customers. Based on past experience better not hold your breath.