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Old 09-23-2010, 09:02 PM   #41
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^ But did they cancel your insurance? Raise your rates?

Allstate paid for an entire new roof for us and didn't raise the rates the next year.
No they did not raise my rates, nor cancel me.
I simply don't believe that this is ethical nor honest business practices to have an entry in my history that is not true.
They said that I made a claim against my insurance when I did not do that. It's the principal of the thing.
I think I deserve better customer service than that. I was a 30 year customer with no claims at all.
I can only protest with my money and that's what I did. I pay someone else for my insurance and it's a whole lot cheaper I might add. Should have done that many years ago.
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Old 09-23-2010, 09:07 PM   #42
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So in reality you should be thanking your old insurance company for making you mad enough to switch companies. They saved you money by doing so.
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Old 09-23-2010, 09:08 PM   #43
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Allstate paid for an entire new roof for us and didn't raise the rates the next year.
That has never been my point. What would have happened if you have another claim within the next couple of years?

How many times can I say it? I don't expect to be non-renewed or have my rates jacked up because of this single event. But it does make me a LOT more wary of filing a second claim, which should have been the first claim if my insistence on not doing anything to hit the CLUE report were honored.
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Old 09-23-2010, 09:09 PM   #44
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The bottom line is, whatever the threshold is we're one step closer to reaching it than I intended to be.

This whole thing makes me think there needs to be an insurance version of Miranda rights: "You realize that by sending out an estimator, you are filing a claim that may count against you even if the damage does not exceed your deductible..."

First... I do not even know what a CLUE is.... so no help there...

There was once where I had a small problem... and called to see what they thought... the person TOLD me that if they come out to estimate then it is considered a claim even if they do not pay... so I declined... I agree that if that was not told to you they need to fix the problem....
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Old 09-23-2010, 09:16 PM   #45
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So in reality you should be thanking your old insurance company for making you mad enough to switch companies. They saved you money by doing so.
Yes you are right! Every time I renew my new policy, I thank A**state.
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Old 09-23-2010, 09:19 PM   #46
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the person TOLD me that if they come out to estimate then it is considered a claim even if they do not pay...
I wish I was told that. This disclosure would have been sufficient for me to decline their estimator and find my own contractor for an estimate. I did not get that. THAT is what pissed me off about this. I made it very clear that I didn't want to file a formal claim (even I knew that would be entered in CLUE) and what I got from the guy on the end of the line made it sound like "you can pursue a claim if the damages are enough to warrant it."

Yes, now that I think on it, "pursue" a claim is not the same as "open" a claim, but I feel like my trust was violated (even if not intentionally). I parsed it as the time as "we can open a formal claim that gets entered in CLUE if the estimate comes back large enough to warrant a claim."

"Pursuing" a claim could mean starting one and dropping it if the estimate reveals $1300 damage on a $2500 deductible. I guess I let my guard down a bit because I trusted USAA a bit more than I'd trust most insurance companies. Fool me once, shame on me?
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Old 09-23-2010, 09:29 PM   #47
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Sounds like a new part-time job for someone (thefed?): Fake claims adjuster, you call them to see if your problem is big enough to call your insurance company.
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Old 09-23-2010, 09:59 PM   #48
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Sounds like a new part-time job for someone (thefed?): Fake claims adjuster, you call them to see if your problem is big enough to call your insurance company.
Good one....
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Old 09-23-2010, 11:47 PM   #49
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It seems that OP is upset based on an assumption that the USAA employee had any choice in whether or not to submit it to CLUE. That may not be the case.

It also seems that OP may be upset because USAA did not do what he told them to do. This is surprising to me. If I told USAA to, say, bill me my homeowner's policy and my auto policy in separate mailings and they refused to do so, I'd at least consider the possibility that they have decided to run their business differently than the way I requested. If it bugged me enough, I'd look to switch, but I wouldn't be upset or angry about it.

It could be that every insurance company behaves in the same way in terms of always reporting to CLUE and dropping people who make claims. Good information to have, but then not a reason to switch.

Finally, there seems to be an assumption that the "non-claim" CLUE report can be revoked/removed by USAA if the OP rattles enough cages. It seems plausible, even logical, that this might be the case. It also seems at least a little plausible that removing a CLUE report might require jumping through hoops that USAA can't or won't do.

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Old 09-24-2010, 12:09 AM   #50
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I plan to take $1-2K a week out of my USAA banking accounts into my Schwab account if they don't make this right. Tick, tick, tick...
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Old 09-24-2010, 03:07 PM   #51
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I just switched to USAA auto/home insurance (no investments with them though). They are one of the top rated Insurers - even though they only insure military past/present. I switched, due to the fact that A*RP jacked the rates up on our remaining car by 33%, when we sold our other car. A*RP had also raised our rates last year by aro. 10% on the cars/home policies (we've had no claims in over five years). USAA not only got us back to where we were on the multi car scenario, but beat the original A*RP rate with an upfront one-time $50.00 off for new customers. They also did beat A*RP's homeowner rate. FYI - Al*state was right there, but coverages were slightly better with USAA.

As for claims - suffered higher auto rates when one of our cars was hit in the parking lot of our temporary apartment in Texas, when we first moved there. Was parked in the private parking lot overnight, and the guy parked next to us damaged it when backing out to leave the next morning. Was not a resident, but incident was witnessed by another tenant who informed me. The police told me they had actually pulled the guy over and searched the vehicle when he parked next to our car that night. Needless to say - nothing ever came of it, and the police never gave me the info as to who it was that hit me. Would have been a worthless pursuit (if you know what I mean)...

Filed a claim - fixed the car. No rate increase or drop, but when we relocated again our insurance rate went up accordingly. When getting insurance quotes - that claim was held against us for getting the best competitive insurance rate (for three years). Only claim we've made where our insurance company had to pay in a long time (a longtime ago this also happened to us with a truck driver hit and run scenario, but was in Michigan, a no-fault state).

Why the story? for relating that I have been there, done that also, and to illustrate that insurers are not really "your friend". Their employees are instructed in how to handle all inquiries, and recorded calls are for their protection. All actions initiated would be documented for legal reasons - even if you end up filing no claim on the inquiry. They protect themselves from fraud with the clue reports - its real purpose, and (probably) use it to assess rates and whether or not to insure you or a property. It's good business practice and helps to keep rates competitive by avoiding losses and/or charging for high risk accordingly (all except exploiting clue reports for assessing your rates, but there is some movement by several states out there regulating this abuse). Seems like it should be illegal to rate fix or deny insurance based on just claims. Really comes across as a scare tactic to me. After all, claims are only paid for accidents. I don't, and never have worked for an insurance company.
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Old 09-24-2010, 03:30 PM   #52
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Just got a call from a manager in the property claims division. I described my situation and he said he'd see what he can do, and he indicated that based on my explanation they clearly failed to educate the customer about what constitutes making a claim given that I stated my strong desire not to do so.

We'll see. Hopefully I'll get to change the thread title.
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Old 09-24-2010, 11:26 PM   #53
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"Obtaining data" and blatantly initiating an action that they know the customer was dead set against are two different things, at least from a business ethics point of view if not a legal one.

... snip ...

In both cases the "professional" has steered someone into a decision that was not appropriate for their situation and their own clearly communicated desires.
Insurance rates are based on statistical models and client specific information. You gave them information. You told them you have dead trees on your property. Of course they're going to use it, it doesn't matter what you want. The core of their business is setting premiums based on all available information. It's the only fair way to do it.
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Old 09-29-2010, 08:38 AM   #54
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Zig, did USAA get back to you?
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:03 AM   #55
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Zig, did USAA get back to you?
Yesterday afternoon. The manager repeatedly admitted that they screwed it up by processing an inquiry as a claim and not "educating" me that what they were starting to do constituted initiating the claims process -- and said he was trying, but they won't budge on it (he said "can't" but that's a lame excuse).

In other words, "our mistakes are our customer's problems."

He got someone who is a manager in the department dealing with policy services and she insisted that state law makes this a non-event, even in the event of a real future claim or two. (I couldn't get them to put that in writing.) Still, I feel they dropped the ball by starting a process I didn't want to start.

Am starting to look at other options, though I'd likely have to move my umbrella if I did so. And it might be chopping off my nose to spite my face.
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"Hey, for every ten dollars, that's another hour that I have to be in the work place. That's an hour of my life. And my life is a very finite thing. I have only 'x' number of hours left before I'm dead. So how do I want to use these hours of my life? Do I want to use them just spending it on more crap and more stuff, or do I want to start getting a handle on it and using my life more intelligently?" -- Joe Dominguez (1938 - 1997)

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Old 09-29-2010, 10:10 AM   #56
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The manager repeatedly admitted that they screwed it up and said he was trying, but they won't budge on it...
That jibes with my understanding of how CLUE works. Every smidgen of available information goes into the program and once it's in it doesn't come out.
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:12 AM   #57
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Am starting to look at other options, though I'd likely have to move my umbrella if I did so. And it might be chopping off my nose to spite my face.
We've been with USAA since 1981 for our cars-- but we've been with Armed Forces Insurance since 1978 for personal property, homeowners, and umbrella liability insurance.

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Old 09-29-2010, 11:04 AM   #58
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Ziggy,
Thanks for the heads-up. I didn't know things worked like this. I agree that you might as well raise your deductible if you're already disinclined to submit a claim now.

All this also reinforces my existing inclination to self-insure as much as possible.

Does this policy open the door to mischief? Do insurance companies authenticate callers? If you are having a bad fight with your nasty neighbor and know who their insurer is, seems it would be pretty easy to pose as them and make an informal inquiry about the coverage for the leaky pipe under "your" slab and the resulting back mold in your walls. "Oh, okay, never mind." There, let's see them undo that.
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Old 09-30-2010, 08:09 AM   #59
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Just a word on USAA, their service has gone downhill recently. I had a power failure in the middle if an ATM transaction while traveling in Indonesia. The transaction registered successful at USAA, but I lost my card and no money. It took 6 months to straighten things out, but I got my money back.

On the plus side, they are one of the few banks that don't charge an ATM fee for using ATM machines at other banks. The foreign money exchange rate is always great. Free money transfer between Credit Card to Checking Account. The ATM card works at most ATM machines around the world, and they have an international toll free number - which is nice.

I have learned to always use the internal messaging system for communication - that way everything is in writing and a lot easier to solve problems like yours. I rarely use the phone because I want a written record. On the phone it is easy to get a bimbo; plus, with internal messaging you can talk to the same person more than once. You don't have to repeat your story each time you call a new clerk.

In my opinion, USAA ain't great, but compared to other financial institutions these days, they are still the best.
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Old 09-30-2010, 10:07 AM   #60
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Ziggy,
Thanks for the heads-up. I didn't know things worked like this. I agree that you might as well raise your deductible if you're already disinclined to submit a claim now.

All this also reinforces my existing inclination to self-insure as much as possible.

Does this policy open the door to mischief? Do insurance companies authenticate callers? If you are having a bad fight with your nasty neighbor and know who their insurer is, seems it would be pretty easy to pose as them and make an informal inquiry about the coverage for the leaky pipe under "your" slab and the resulting back mold in your walls. "Oh, okay, never mind." There, let's see them undo that.
Every policy holder has a secure pin number ID that you have to give to discuss your policies.
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