Wednesday, September 06, 2006
More Bad Press for Allstate, But Who Really Cares?
Allstate made record profits in 2005, and if I had no moral scruples, I'd invest in the company. It is a great investment if all you are interested in is profit. I should start an insurance company of my own, where I take payments, but don't live up to any contract. And my angst is toward the corporation, as the people who we have met who work Allstate are sympathetic and nice by and large. But it is one year after Katrina, and still they won't honor thousands of contracts here in New Orleans and the Gulf Coast. And now they're trying to get out of 30,000 contracts in the region. Here in Louisiana, a 1992 law says an insurance company can only drop policy holders with a 3 year tenure if they 1. Don't pay their bills, 2. commit fraud, 3. have more than 2 claims in 3 years, 4. the insurance company would go bankrupt if it kept the customers. But now Allstate wants to pull out of Louisiana and have a state run agency take over, which would greatly increase the cost to the insured. It boils down to this bizarre fact: if you have car insurance through Allstate, they keep you, if you don't, you're history. Ironically, we have car insurance through our nemesis Allstate, and so we still have insurance for our severely damaged home. Insurance from what I'm not sure. What exactly would it take for Allstate to live up to their end of the contract? A hurricane and subsequent flood waters caused severe structural damage to our house, and they won't address these issues. Instead, they thought it was a good business practice to hire Haag Engineering to claim that Katrina and the flood didn't cause any damage to the structure of our house. We keep paying our premiums because we don't know what else to do. But let me tell you, if a meteor fell on our car tonight, and then the fire destroyed our home, I doubt very much whether Allstate would pay us. We're covered in our minds, but they'd find ways to get out of the contract.