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Smaller, Regional Auto Insurers Get Top Grades from Repairers

Collision repairers continue to see smaller auto insurers outpacing the 10 largest insurers in terms of working to ensure quality repairs and customer service, according to the findings of the 2021 CRASH Network “Insurer Report Card.”

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Chubb, Erie Insurance, Michigan Farm Bureau and North Carolina Farm Bureau each earned an overall grade of A- or higher from shops evaluating the insurers in terms of how well each company’s “policies, attitude and payment practices ensure quality repairs and customer service for motorists.”

More than 1,100 individual shops around the country each graded as many as 30 different insurance companies in their state. In all, this year’s Insurer Report Card includes grades for 75 insurance companies.

“Consumers go a decade, on average, without interacting with their insurance company’s claims department, but collision repairers do so every day,” said John Yoswick of CRASH Network. “That gives shops meaningful perspective on which companies do the best job taking care of policyholders – and which ones have some room for improvement. We see the Insurer Report Card providing useful information for drivers as they consider which insurer to choose.”

None of the 10 largest auto insurers – the companies most familiar to consumers thanks to the billions of dollars those insurers spend on marketing – received an overall grade higher than a C+ from shops.

“Some of the highest-graded insurers sell policies in only a limited number of states, but most consumers will find at least one or two insurers among the 15 highest-graded who offer auto insurance policies in their state,” said Yoswick.

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Shops participating in the Insurer Report Card said those highest-graded insurers place an emphasis on:

  • “Repairing vehicles properly”
  • “Following the auto manufacturers’ guidelines”
  • “Keeping their customers’ best interests paramount”

They criticized the insurers they gave lower grades, using such phrases such as:

  • “Cares more about cost than quality of the repair”
  • “Pressures us to use cheap, low-quality parts
  • “Slow claims process”
  • “Inexperienced adjusters”

The list of highest-graded insurers in 2021 was remarkably consistent with last year’s findings; among the 15 highest-graded insurers in this year’s Insurer Report Card, 10 were in the Top 15 last year as well.

A free report with the 2021 “Insurer Report Card” findings can be downloaded here.

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