Slightly more than a third of the 93 auto insurers graded by collision repairers earned an overall grade of B or over, while none of the nation’s 10 largest insurers received a grade higher than C+, CRASH Network reported in the annual “Insurer Report Card.”
There was little movement from last year’s survey, the authors said. Eleven of the 15 highest-graded insurers were repeats from 2022.
CRASH Network asked body shops to award each insurer a grade from A+ to F according to one question: “How well performs this insurer’s claims handling policies, attitude and payment practices ensure quality repairs and customer support for motorists?”
According to the authors, 1,153 shops in 49 states taken care of immediately the voluntary survey, that was conducted online in November-December 2022. Respondents were repair facility owners, managers, estimators, or any other shop employees, who typically have 28 experience within the collision repair industry.
Shops gave letter grades to 144 different car insurance companies. Only insurers that received a grade from a minimum of 35 shops were contained in the national ranking.
Insurers’ grades were calculated by converting each individual letter grade to some numerical score, to be able to calculate an unweighted average of all grades received. The final grade may be the letter grade akin to an insurer’s average score.
The shops’ perspective “is unique considering that most drivers choose years – a decade, on average – without getting together with their insurance company's claims department, but collision repairers achieve this every single day,” CRASH Network's John Yoswick said inside a statement. “That provides them a front-row seat as to which companies perform the best job looking after policyholders – and which ones possess some room for improvement. That's why we have seen the 'Insurer Report Card' providing helpful information for consumers as they consider which insurer to select.”
Some repairers added comments to their grades. “They criticized the insurers to which they gave lower grades using such phrases … as, 'cares more about costs compared to quality of the repair,' 'pressures us to make use of cheap, low-quality parts,' 'slow claims processes,' and 'inexperienced adjusters,'” CRASH Network said.
Among those rising to the peak 15 this season were Grinnell Mutual, whose grade improved from the B to a B+, and Wisconsin Mutual, which earned a B after to not get enough ratings this past year to be eligible for a a national ranking.
The survey found that shops that participate in an insurer’s direct repair program almost always give higher grades to that insurer than shops that don’t. State Farm, for example, got a B from program shops and a Of others; Allstate’s grades showed an identical gap, at B- and D+. However, GEICO received a grade of C from its DRPs, not much different than the C- it caused by other shops.
Many of the insurers getting the highest grades are “smaller, regional insurance companies, ones that many consumers may not be familiar with since these companies do not spend vast amounts of dollars per year on advertising,” laptop computer notes.
Among the ten largest and best-known insurers, American Family and Travelers received the highest overall grades, at C+. USAA, Nationwide, Progressive, and Farmers each received a C; GEICO, Liberty Mutual, assuring Farm were each graded C-, and Allstate trailed the pack with a D+.
The cheapest grade awarded, a D-, visited regional insurer American Access, which does business in four states.
The report card lists insurers by state, and alphabetically, making it especially helpful for consumers.
A free report with the 2022 “Insurer Report Card” findings can be downloaded at https://www.crashnetwork.com/irc.
Though the CRASH Network’s survey has closed, collision repairers in Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia, and Washington D.C., have time for you to take part in the regional survey being conducted by the Washington Metropolitan Auto Body Association .
WMABA is asking shops to rate insurance provider market behaviors in several categories. Responses will be accepted until March 31.
The survey is posted on the WMABA Website and also is out to all regional members. It will be featured in Hammer & Dolly, making on the web site in a consumer-friendly format.
“While WMABA stands around the customer to be the vehicle owner, the involvement from the insurance providers along the way is one thing hopefully will consistently improve. This survey can give repairers, consumers, regulatory bodies, or any other your customers a body of knowledge to assist in future-facing decisions. Our hope is that this will be reflective of claims handling in our entire membership region,” said Jordan Hendler, the association’s executive director.