As of 01/12/09, I have spoken with the District Sales Manager and she gave me her cell phone number in case any other problems arise. I also received a telephone call from my adjuster stating that they are waiving my $500 collision deductible! Yea! Talk about good customer service.
Since my friend Nicol wrote a great post yesterday about the importance of documenting valuables for your homeowners insurance, I thought I would share my latest insurance experience. I would love to hear every one's opinion on my experience.
Yep. I was in a car accident almost two weeks ago. No, it wasn't my fault. I didn't worry too much about it after it happened because I have previously loved my car insurance company. Not only do they have my car insured, but the also insure my home. I know my agent and his wife personally and they are quite possibly some of the kindest people.
My car accident took place around 4pm on December 27th. The police were called immediately. I filed a police report. Since I was out of town for a wedding, as soon as I arrived at the hotel, I called my insurance company and filed a claim. My insurance company has someone answering the phones 24/7/365, but if your aren't calling during normal business hours you get a service that is hired to take claims. They aren't a part of the company. The woman stated that it could be as late a Tuesday morning before I heard from my claims adjuster. I completely understood this, being the holidays and all. Let me also state that after I graduated college, I worked as a claims adjuster for GEICO. I understand how busy and overwhelmed insurance adjuster's can get. The two business day time frame seemed perfectly reasonable to me.
Fast forward to Tuesday afternoon. I still hadn't heard from my adjuster. I called the wife of my insurance agent who was surprised to hear that I had been in an accident. She stated that they were usually notified immediately when one of their clients had been involved in a car accident. She contacted the home office and sure enough... the service company had never reported the claim to my insurance company. She got it taken care of and at 8:30pm on December 30 the adjuster attempted to contact me. Except I was in the shower when she called so I didn't receive the call. I spoke with her on December 31, and she was extremely nice and helpful. She set me up in a rental car, which I decided not to use because we still have my grandmother's car. I felt that since I had a car I could use, I didn't feel right about wasting money. I do get the bigger picture about keeping costs down to help keep premiums lower.
Fast forward to last night, January 7. I arrive home and check the answering machine and find a message from the tow yard/body shop where my car has been sitting since December 27. They informed me that an adjuster/appraiser was out to look at my car on December 31 and they were wondering if I wanted them to repair my car. WHOA! I was kind of upset. EIGHT days had gone by since then and not one call from my insurance company. I understand about the holiday, so if they had called me on Monday, January 5, that would have been acceptable. I calmed down and composed an email.
I sent this email to the adjuster I spoke with on the 31st and also to my agent. I felt like my agent had the right to know what had been going on. I was calm and kind in my wording but also firm. I expressed that I was disappointed in my insurance company because I selected them for their customer service, but I was not receiving the service I expected. I also let them know that at this point I would looking for another company to meet my insurance needs.
I received a phone call from my adjuster within 10 minutes. She sounded like she was about to cry. I felt horrible. I hate upsetting people. She had been sick, it was the holidays and so on and so forth. I advised her that I understood and that I wasn't upset with her but with the lack of communication I had received. She seemed concerned that I had emailed my agent and told me that eight days wasn't that big of a deal. I didn't necessarily agree with that because I had already selected a body shop on the 31st when we had last spoke and had informed her of my decision. As we closed the conversation, I advised her that I would send an email to my agent and let him know of her quick follow up. She seemed relieved to hear that.
I sent the email to my agent. He received it and sent out two further emails. The first one he sent to his boss and to the boss of my adjuster. He also cc'd me and the adjuster. It wasn't a nice email. I felt really bad for the poor lady. The next email was just to me and it stated that he understood that I was now okay, but her felt like the whole situation was unacceptable. I just feel like I did the wrong thing by involving him. I don't want anyone to get in trouble. What do you think?
On a side note, I now feel like I belong in the 55+ group. My grandmother's car is fully loaded Buick Le sabre. All I have to do is put the key in the ignition and it adjusts to the way I like the seat positioned, turns on the air to the temperature I like and turns on the radio. It's crazy! I still drive at the same speed that I drove in my car (speed limit and occasionally maybe 5 miles over) but people fly around me! I guess they see what they consider to be an older person's car and think that I am going 5 mph! JD has an interesting theory about older people driving slower. She said "Maybe they go slower because their cars are so comfortable they aren't in a hurry to get where they are going. They just want to enjoy the ride." I think she might be on to something here.
I normally drive a Honda Element and I love it. My family refers to it as the "bread box" or "the box", but I don't care. I want my box back!