Allstate New Jersey got one of its good hands slapped by an Administrative judge, who ruled that the company had unfairly forced Jennifer Bencivengo into an assigned risk plan following an accident which wasn’t her fault.
According to a report in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Bencivengo had an accident in a rental car, which was apparently caused by a tire blowout. Allstate demanded payment of $2700 for the damages and canceled her policy, forcing her into an assigned risk plan which cost her $4500 a year in premium, $3000 more than she had paid Allstate.
Helped by her father and without the services of a lawyer, she challenged the company’s decision in an administrative appeals process. The judge’s decision in her favor, which was adopted by New Jersey’s Department of Banking and Insurance, orders Allstate to reinstate her original policy retroactively to 2000, and to reimburse her for the excessive premiums.
The decision caps Bencivengo’s two-year effort to disprove the original investigator’s report, which assigned the blame for the accident to her by incorrectly asserting that she had said the wheel came off the car, which was not the case.
She and her father expressed disappointment at Allstate’s conduct, and urged other people to challenge insurance company decisions, which they feel are incorrect.
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