Oregon Collision Shops Give State Farm High Customer Service Marks

June 2, 2008

State Farm and smaller Northwest insurers are among the best at taking care of customers after an accident. Some larger insurers — Progressive, Allstate, Safeco and Farmers Insurance — are among the worst. That was the finding of a survey of Oregon collision repair shops.

“Collision repair shops on a daily basis see how various insurance companies take care of Oregon drivers after an accident, so we felt it was worthwhile to ask how they rate the various insurers,” said Barbara Crest, executive director for the Northwest Automotive Trades Association, which conducted the survey. This is the third such survey NATA conducted since 2004.

About 650 collision repair shops in Oregon received the survey, which asked them to grade the top 22 auto insurers in terms of how well each company’s “policies, attitude and payment practices ensure quality repairs and customer service for Oregon motorists.”

Among the latest findings:

  • State Farm held on to the top spot, receiving a B+, a slight drop from the A- it received in the two earlier surveys.
  • North Pacific/Liberty Northwest, Oregon Mutual and Mutual of Enumclaw received grades of B or B-, ranking them in the top four.
  • Farmers, Allstate, Progressive and Safeco received below-average overall grades of D+ or lower.
  • The other 14 auto insurers on the survey — including Hartford, Liberty Mutual, USAA, American Family, California Casualty and Nationwide — received grades of between C+ and C-.
  • In most cases, the grades given a particular insurer from shops involved in that insurer’s direct repair program (DRP) were higher than those given by shops that are not part of that insurer’s program. That was true with Progressive, GEICO, USAA, AIG, whose DRP shops gave them grades of B- or better while non-DRP shops gave those same insurers grades of C- or lower (a D- for Progressive). But even Farmers and Nationwide’s DRP shops gave those insurers only average grades of C.
  • California Casualty, American Family, AIG and GEICO received slightly higher grades in 2008 than in 2006. Country Companies was the only insurer to improve in the last two surveys, moving from a C in 2006 and to a C+ this year.
  • Allstate showed the largest decline, receiving a C in 2006 and D+ this year.
  • Only Progressive and Farmers have ranked in the bottom four among insurers in all three NATA surveys.

NATA is a Portland-based trade association representing the auto trades industries in region.

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Insurance Journal West June 2, 2008
June 2, 2008
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