Actually, my post title is a bit unfair. Until our recent burglary, I’ve thought Allstate to be the best insurance company I’ve ever dealt with. Our agent, Jeremy Olson is superb–incredibly responsive and helpful. The company’s claims department is equally thorough and helpful.
Our home was burgled a few months ago. We were home when it happened. I’ve got to tell you–hearing a 30 pound rock come crashing through your front window at 1:30 AM is a sound you don’t want to hear too often in your life. It scared the bejesus out of all of us, but particulary our 3 year old.
Allstate was great in helping to pick us up and put us back together again. They sent a contractor out the next day to make as many immediate home repairs as were possible. They’ve paid claims promptly and been incredibly proactive. They’ve helped us find appropriate service people to repair specialized items like wooden shutters.
But one particular part of our recent claims experience has left me scratching my head about how wacky the insurance industry can be. It seems that if your home is burglarized and your house and car keys are stolen (as ours were) the homeowners policy WILL cover the cost of rekeying your home locks. But it WILL NOT cover the cost of rekeying your car locks. Say what, you ask? Well, that’s what the brilliant policy writers have come up with. Apparently, rekeying car locks has become quite expensive with newly added computerized security measures and the industry has decided to exclude such claims. The homeowners policy specifically excludes coverage for automobiles. While Allstate’s auto insurance policy will not cover the rekeying because no damage was done to the car itself. So out of an approximately $4,000-5,000 claim, Allstate is refusing $600 worth. That ain’t hay for us members of the working middle class. There you have it, is that nuts?!
This is another example in which corporate policy completely divorces itself from the insured victim’s actual experience. When you buy insurance you expect your company will make you whole for any reasonable claim that is related to your loss. Well, not so fast, buster. Now, I feel like a fool screwed over twice: once by the burglar and now by my insurance company.
I noted to the Allstate complaint department that the lunacy of this situation meant that if we did not rekey the car and the burglar did steal it later, then Allstate would cover the theft of the car (a much more expensive claim than merely paying for rekeying locks).
The Washington State Insurance Commissioner’s office claims that insurance policies are contracts and as such cannot be regulated under State law. Just great! I’ve also contacted my State Senator, Adam Kline to make him aware of the idiocy of this situation. There oughta be a law!