Allstate may pay premiums for unhappy customers

Posted June 16, 2010 at 3:31 p.m.

By Becky Yerak | Allstate Corp., looking for ways to boost market share, is considering
offering a guarantee in which the Northbrook-based insurer would pay
policyholders’ premiums for a year if they’re not satisfied with their
claims experience, an agent group says.

The National Association of Professional Allstate Agents confirmed to
the Tribune on Wednesday that Allstate management floated the idea in
town hall meetings with agents earlier this month.

For its part, Allstate on Wednesday afternoon would say only that it has
a “history of reinventing auto insurance with unique customer-driven
innovations,” such as accident forgiveness and a safe driving bonus

“We’re working with regulators in all 50 states to introduce an exciting new feature that we believe will raise the bar for what consumers should expect of their auto insurance company,” spokesman Raleigh Floyd said, declining to be more specific. “We’ll have more to say about our new products when they become available to consumers.”

Jim Fish, NAPAA executive director, liked the idea of a claims satisfaction guarantee but said the devil is in the details.

“If it’s legal, it could be a terrific sales tool for Allstate agents,” Fish said. But “if agents promote this feature and then find out that customers have to jump through hoops to qualify for the premium waiver, it could backfire.”

Also uncertain is how dissatisfied a customer has to be for the guarantee to kick in, Fish wondered.

“The agents we’ve spoken to are cautiously optimistic,” Fish said, “but several have asked, ‘what’s the catch?’”

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  1. Gina L June 16, 2010 at 3:48 pm

    So if I’m a faithful Allstate customer who has never had an accident, I do not get a premium “holiday.”
    but if I’m a faithful customer who has an accident, I can claim I had a bad experience and have my premium returned?
    They need to up the percentage on their premium payback program to the customers who do not get into accidents.

  2. Jenny W June 16, 2010 at 7:12 pm

    Gina – That is what Allstate’s Safe Driving Bonus does. It gives customers 5% back each policy term if there is no accident. What Allstate seems to be doing here is standing behind their service. I like it!

  3. OakLawnBill June 17, 2010 at 10:47 a.m.

    Just pray that you are not hit by someone insured by Allstate. These pukes will give you a toy car and will fight to use substandard and used parts to fix your vehicle.
    Drive safe Allstate customers, the rest of us can’t afford it.

  4. Megan McEnroe June 17, 2010 at 11:46 a.m.

    How long have you worked for Allstate?

  5. Megan McEnroe June 17, 2010 at 11:49 a.m.

    How long have you worked for Allstate?

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  7. AIC Emp June 17, 2010 at 1:18 pm

    Great! There goes my pay raise (again)!

  8. AIC Emp June 17, 2010 at 1:21 pm

    it doesn’t mean Jenny is an employee; anyone who *either* has Allstate insurance or works for Allstate knows of this discount/rebate.
    I noticed in a recent State Farm commercial they’re starting that rebate, too.

  9. CINDY June 17, 2010 at 4:28 pm

    Just shows how desperate they are for business.

  10. T Wilson June 17, 2010 at 4:46 pm

    So how will Allstate offer this premium guarantee without losing money (cause if it loses money, they won’t do it)? One guess is they will raise everyone’s premium – not a lot so you notice and switch companies to a cheaper alternative – but just enough to cover themselves financially.

  11. layla fanucci June 18, 2010 at 11:23 a.m.

    Allstate’s goal is to maximize profits by offering lowball settlements to policyholders. Those who refuse are treated to years of expensive litigation. .

    Song I wrote about our 14 year fight with this criminal company. Title: You’re NOT in good Hands:

  12. former allstate employee June 20, 2010 at 11:52 a.m.

    allstate made a decision to close the valley forge subrogation department on may 14, 2010.

    for those that don’t know or understand what subrogation (subro) is, it’s money recovery, a collection dept if you will. subro is the dept that goes after the other insurance (ins) company to recover what the company has paid out for repairs as well as the policy holders deductible.

    allstate had 4 subro offices. the one in vf (valley forge), roanoke va, atlanta ga, and dallas texas. the roanoke handled the claims where the other ins co was not a member of a group called arbitration forums inc. arbitration is an independent mediator who resolves issues between the ins carriers (think of how stirkes are settled. they go through a mediator). there are some companies that aren’t members of arb forums. when ins companies run into those companies, the work is sent to a legal dept to file suit in court.

    the dallas office is the start of the process. dallas is supposed to contact the other carrier, confirm ins, and also that a claim has been set up with the other carrier (commonly called the “tpc”, third party carrier). once that has been done, dallas is then responsible for sending the supporting paperwork to the other carrier. supports would be a copy of our estimate, photos, police report, as well as the cover letter stating the amount of the demand which includes the deductible (ded) amount. once the supports have been sent, dallas will then make a series of calls to the tpc. if they can’t get through to the tpc, or the tpc disagrees with liability, then the file is transferred to either the vf or atlanta office for negotiations or to file arbitration.

    between the atlanta and vf offices, the vf office was the highest recovery producing office. atlanta always had trouble making their goals.

    after working with the company for 31 years, i am now unemployed.

    yes, i do feel let down from what the company has done.

    allstate treats single drivers unfairly. you’ve all heard that your rates are higher until approx age 25, or you get married. when you hit 25, it’s generally thought that you no longer have a lead foot on the gas pedal, you’ve matured a little more, and you’re now supposed to be a better driver. once you get married, you’re rates are also supposed to go down, again, it’s because you’ve settled down and are more mature now that you have a family.

    allstate doesn’t just rate you on your driving record. they rate you as per your marital status. if you are still single and well past the 25 age range, allstate feels that you are still a high risk driver. allstate feels that because you are single you are more frivilous with your money, and therefore, more likely to have an accident. if you are still single when you hit age 50, then your rates will supposedly drop because it doesn’t matter to them. i guess they feel at age 50, you’re now considered “settled” and more mature. i’m speaking from experience. i was paying an extra $500-600 per year more because of my marital status. while i have had a few accidents over the years, my driving record is clean. no tickets for speeding or running red lights, etc.
    in 2009, i checked with other carriers and found i could get better coverages for way less money. i am now saving that extra $500-600 that allstate was over charging me.

    what a lot of people don’t realize is that all these extra programs allstate offers means the company can charge you more to make up the difference in premiums. for instance, the “vanishing deductible”, you actually pay a higher premium. that way, when your ded goes down that $100 every year you go without an accident, they aren’t losing any money, because you have paid for it in advance. yes, nationwide, state farm, geico, and everbody else who offers this type of program is doing the same thing.

    allstate is outsourcing alot of their work to outside vendors. they are sending work to the vendors to file arbitration. supposedly, it will save the company money. it won’t. it will cost allstate more in the long run. once the arb (arbiration) has been filed, the vendor then sends it back to allstate to follow up for the decision, and should allstate recover any money from the decision allstate has to follow up with the tpc for the recovery. allstate also has to issue payment to the other tpc if allstate loses in arb. regardless of the outcome from the arb hearing. allstate still has to pay the vendor. if allstate loses in arb, and the customer is not happy, the call is not transferred to the vendor who wrote the arb, it’s given to an allstate employee who can’t explain why the arb contentions (arguement) were written in such a way that we would lose the case. you now have an unhappy customer on the phone, and can’t do anything for them to make them a satisfied customer.

    allstate no longer cares about their employees. there are few incentives to do well. why should an employee bust their butt, when they don’t see anything in the future for themselves? the work load is ridiculus. the employees in the claims dept are super stressed. manament doesn’t care. all they want are numbers and more numbers. employees are being told be thankful you still have a job. then a few months later, boom! you’re being told that your office is closing in 60 days. nice knowing you! don’t forget to let the door hit you in the butt on your way out!

    have you seen one of allstates most recent commercials? actor dennis haysbert says that when you call allstate the person who takes your report is also the person that will handle your claim. when you call in, you don’t go through a call center. that is such a lie!!!! when you call in, everything is automated. you get a call center when you have to report a claim. once the claim has been established, then you are given the name and phone number of the rep. if you call in for status of your claim, and you can’t reach your claim rep, you are routed to a call center, and the person in the call center can’t handle your question because they are in another part of the country, and are also hired temps who don’t know anything about how claims are handled. why does the company hire so many temps? it’s because then they don’t have to pay benefits such as medical coverage or vacation time.

    why is the company doing this? it’s because the big shot ceo tom wilson can justify his $10.4 billion a year salary, plus his bonus.

    are you an allstate stock holder? if so, did you vote your proxies? i hope you voted against everything the board wanted.

    item 1: stockholder proposal seeking the right to call special shareholder meetings. the board was against this. why do they have something to hide? if so, what are they hiding?

    2: stockholder proposal seeking the right for stockholders to act by written consent. the board was against this as well.

    3: stockholder proposal seeking an advisory resolution to ratify the compensation of the names executive officers. the board was also against this. seems like the shareholders feels that the board is getting to many “perks”.

    4: stockholder proposal seeking a review and report on executive compensation. again the board was against this.

    5: stockholder proposal seeking a report on political contributions and payments to trade associations and other tax exempt organizations. the board was also against this. what are they trying to hide

  13. former allstate employee June 20, 2010 at 12:03 pm

    i voted my proxies this year like i do every year.

    i have also cashed out my 401k from allstate. unfortunately, i can’t take my pension out until i have reached age 55 and 1 month. you can be sure that as soon as i am 55, i will set the paperwork in motion to get the rest of my money out of allstate.

    with the way things are going, allstate will be lucky to be around for the next 8-10 years. if they are, they will either be bought out by another company, or go belly up (bankrupt)

    you can be sure that if this new idea for allstate to pay a 1 year premium to an unsatisfied customer, you are seriously going to have a lot of complaints. some will be legit, other won’t be. what ever their plan is, there will be hoops for the customer to jump through.

    allstate has never been known for cheap rates.

    they are fighting hard to improve their customer loyalty index. what allstate is doing to it’s employees is really hurting their business. of the 65 impacted employees in the valley forge subro office, at least 40 of those people who had multiple policies, (homeowners, health, auto, etc) they have cancelled those policies and have given them to other companies with more reasonable rates. if you decide to stay with allstate after reading both of these entries, good luck.