All or nothing for some Allstate customers

June 24, 2011 3:05:49 PM PDT
Some North Carolina residents say they are concerned, after a major insurance company is threatening to cut them loose.

More than 40,000 Allstate customers have been getting letters in the mail letting them know their homeowner's insurance policies will not be renewed unless they add on auto insurance.

Allstate Customer Ricky Stout says he pays his homeowner's policy each year. He says in all the years he's had Allstate, he never even filed a claim.

"I was very upset because all of a sudden now they are telling me I have to put my auto insurance with them or my homeowner's policy is gone I don't think it's right at all," Stout said.

Stout says he has his auto insurance through another carrier and is happy with it and does not want to make the switch.

"I don't think they're trying to keep me," he said. "I don't think they care."

Stout says he wonders why Allstate is taking this action and if it is even allowed.

ABC11 Eyewitness New I-Team Troubleshooter Diane Wilson reached out to Allstate and a representative says they will not offer the option to renew to about 44,700 North Carolina customers who only have property coverage and not an auto policy.

"More than 400,000 North Carolina customers have purchased insurance products from Allstate, and Allstate takes that responsibility very seriously," said John Heid, Allstate Senior Communications Consultant in the Southeast Region. "Managing our exposure is necessary to allow Allstate to continue to help provide protection and peace of mind through a variety of insurance products."

"At the same time, Allstate proactively seeks out solutions to meet the challenges posed by North Carolina’s insurance market, and to help preserve affordable access to insurance in this state."

"Allstate has made an agreement with Universal North America Insurance Company (Universal). As a part of our agreement with Universal North America Insurance Company, and in an effort to manage our overall risk in the North Carolina property insurance market, Allstate will not offer the option to renew for a segment of North Carolina property customers, most of which will be provided a quote for property coverage with Universal. Beginning with policies that renew on or after June 19, 2011, Allstate will not offer the option to renew to approximately 44,700 homeowner, Landlord’s Package Policy (LPP) and mobile home policies throughout North Carolina that did not also have an active standard Allstate auto policy as of December 15, 2010. The majority of these affected customers will receive a quote from Universal for property insurance coverage."

"These actions were carefully considered, and will help ensure Allstate’s continued ability to provide a wide variety of insurance products to North Carolina consumers at a competitive rate, while remaining financially strong in every community we serve."

A check with the state's department of insurance says Allstate's action is legal, as long asthe company gives the insured 30 days advanced notice of non-renewal.

Stout says he received that notice, but does not understand why Allstate wants to lose his $2,800 homeowner's policy each year.

"I don't understand as my homeowner's insurance is a lot more expensive than my car insurance and I'm like why are they worried about that little bit business," he said.

Meanwhile, the North Carolina Department of Insurance does offer a consumer guide to shopping for insurance. To read it, click here (.pdf).

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