I purchased a renters insurance via Geico.com . I went through the online application filling each and every question asked. I was approved and purchased the policy again, via geico.com. On March 2, 2013 our home was broken into while I was in the Hospital.
The police came out, filed a report. It was determined that someone or person(s) gained access to our unit via the vacant unit next door and came through their attic into our attic which has not firewall divider. We kept our attic doorway padlocked so the burglar(s) kicked and/or punched through the attic floor/living area ceiling.
We filed a claim with the insurance company. Geico directed us to the underwriter, American Bankers insurance of Florida - Assurant. We sent all requested documents and was assigned to an adjuster named Mary Ramero. VERY pleasant to speak with , at first!..She asked for the same documents over and over repeatidly. First she wanted photos we had emailed to her 1 way, then she requested, a week later, for us to send same pictures another way, then, a week later, we got a letter in the mail asking us , again, to send SAME pictures AGAIN.
We were now into 3 weeks of her delaying the claim by continuously asking for same documents. During the 3rd week, she did a recorded statement via telephone and asked my partner, If we had ever had an insurance claim in the past. My boyfriend answered yes! gave the approx date, approx amt and circumstances. [ she did not ask if you had another claim]. After my boyfriend gave her that information, she moved on to other questions.
The following day, we get msg that the claim had been turned over to the SIU ( Special investigative unit).. No problem. We went another week and never contacted by the special investigator or who he/she was. I called our adjuster to find out the status. She informed us the claim had been "DENIED".
Her reasoning was ; "you concealed information and misrepresented information on your application for coverage and that is considered fraud". I WAS FIT TO BE TIED AND LIVID. THis same week, on Easter Sunday, My father passed away, we were having to deal with the burglary in which my boyfriends grandmother passed away a few years ago and left him several collectible dolls which can NEVER be replaced, and now, This agent, company, is wanting to insinuate "fraud"??? IF ANYONE had committed fraud, it was them, and Ill explain for everyone else whom is considering Assurant/ American Bankers Insurance of Florida ( THROUGH GEICO). I stress, "through geico" for a reason which ill explain.
I informed her I know D*** well I listed the previous claim and specifically remember doing so. I told her I wanted a copy of the original application . She informed me I would have to go through Geico since it was their website.
I called Geico, explained the problem, and the rep informed me he would have someone check into it and email me the information and/or call me the same day when the other rep got off the phone with another call.
3 days later now, still no call or email. I called geico ( after spending 20 minutes through the usual automated msgs, "press this number for this......") I bet I pressed each and every option listed and spoke
to as many reps who informed me, "I do not know who would have that information but i can transfer you to someone who does"..JUST TO BE PLACED BACK ON HOLD IN CUE in circles.
Then, they started telling me they would transfer me to Assurant ( the underwriters). I informed them, "NO, i do NOT want to be transfered to them, i want the information from geico who originally took the
application online". they reply, "oh ok, let me transfer you to OUR help desk"..Of course they transfer you to "Assurant". When I get to assurant, I enter my policy number/claim number and then, It disconnects
me. ( as if they have me black listed for complaining now).
Each company is pointing the fingers. They accuse you of something you KNOW is false. then, when you ask for the proof. NO ONE CAN FIND THAT INFORMATION!!!!!
Not withstanding the fact that: My claims adjuster stated, "if you had stated you had a previous claim, we would not have insured you". I informed her 1. we DID list that information 2. when we did a recorded
statement with her some weeks ago, she asked, "have you filed a claim in the past"? we answered "yes" and gave details, dates, amts, items etc etc etc. She didnt ask a follow up, "have you had any others?". WHen I
pointed that recorded statement out to her, she stated, "well, that is beside the fact"..
Yet I played devils advocate and went to Geicos website today, applied for insurance with a different name, address etc etc. I entered 3 different claims, 1. $25,000.00 2.$6,000.00 and it allowed me to go all
the way to the final page to enter my credit card, electronically sign, state the date I wanted the policy to start . IN other words, it was going to allow me to start a policy.
In addition, on Geico.com website, hypothetically speaking, during the application process, if you enter "0" claims filed in the past, it will default you to a "Travelers Insurance" policy. At least when I ran 3 different simulations. So it begs the question, if American Bankers Insurance is stating, "we stated we had no prior claims" then it would stand to reason, we would not be dealing with Assurant via Geico, it would be Travelers.
Further, no where on Geicos website did it have a legal statement to the effect, prior claims may or may not be held against you. in the field where it asks if you have had a previous claim, their is a little (?) mark symbol you can click for information that states, "that information is needed to assure the best rate for the policy", it didnt state any legal terminology about "fraudulently" withholding that information. Regardless, the original application we DID list a previous claim!!
After I emailed "Geico" several times requesting a copy of the application i submitted via their website, I received an email reply from geico with a pdf file document that was an application in pdf form, however, it was titled "American Bankers Insurance of Floriday", Geico was not listed on that form anywhere. Not to mention, the application sent to me had different questions that asked on geico.com web/application. such as: Policy holder name/insured: there are 2 ( two ) people on the policy yet this pdf app had one name listed. 2. The American Bankers Application sent to me in pdf asks, "have you filed any prior claims in the past 3 years?" Geico.com application asks if you have filed any claims in the past "7 years". At the bottom of that pdf file application, it asks the applicant to electronically sign by typing in their full name in the box provided. Beside that box, it has the : Application date:..The date we applied was Jan the date entered in the field showed April.
It is important to note: if you go to Assurant's website to fill out a quote for insurance, you go through the process and if you enter a previous claim, it will not allow you to proceed further. Many people will say, "the application is for a quote subject to change/cancelation etc and is not a guarantee of service", however, at the same time the online application asks for your credit card information for payment, and the notice
that by signing your electronic signature and authorizing payment, you acknowledge you are bound by the "contract" the same as if you were signing on paper in ink.
I would STRONGLY encourage anyone thinking about renters insurance to consider other agencies versus Geico and American Bankers Insurance. If geico is selling a service provided by American Bankers, they need to have their act together and their story straight with regards to the qualifications of the applicant. When i DO TAKE THEM TO COURT ( and my attorney is discussing this very option with me if they do not resolve it on their own ), Ill hold both geico and American Bankers Insurance of Florida Accountable.
It seems they have two varying applications they use when the time comes for a claim being filed, I assume they use which ever one will help them out and fit better into the current situation.
They are denying claims on deceptive application practices and they want to accuse other innocent consumers of Fraud?