On February 3rd while stopped behind another vehicle at a red light, I was struck from behind by a drunk driver insured by Direct General. The police report mentions that the driver was arrested for DUI, and also left 89 feet of tire marks before hitting my vehicle. As this was at around 10 pm I called Direct General the next day after I was released from the hospital for injuries to my knees and whiplash. I was out of work for the next 6 days per doctor's orders.
The first call to Direct General (1-800-627-8006), I spoke with someone named Melinda, but was disconnected 15 minutes into the call. I called again and spoke with Alex, who gave me a claim number 143XXXX. I was then transferred to a claims adjuster, where I got to listen to an open headset for 10 minutes. Finally someone named Desiree answered, and was told that I would be contacted by an adjuster within 24 hours. This is on February 4th.
I was not contacted by an adjuster until the 7th! The adjuster, Courtney Bolton, recorded my statement. I asked about a rental car, and she said she couldn't do that until after she spoke with all parties, and that she had not been able to get in touch with her client. I mentioned that she couldn't get in touch with him because he was in jail. She said "Just because he was arrested for drunk driving doesn't mean he was the cause of the accident."
I needed a vehicle so I called my own insurance agent with Farm Bureau and filed a claim with them. I was contacted by an adjuster a few hours later, he set up the rental car and Enterprise called me less than an hour later. They even picked me up. Kudos to Farm Bureau for being on the ball!
Now, I was asked to fax the medical bills I received to Courtney, which I did, and then didn't hear anything more from her for almost a month. I again had to go with my own insurance company, who took care of the payout for my vehicle (it was totalled by the accident) and I was able to search and find a replacement.
Long story short, Courtney has all of the medical bills, and tells me they will offer a settlement and gave me an amount that would be paid to me in a check. She said the last bill that needed to be paid was the EMS bill, and that would be subtracted from the amount I was to receive. I was okay with that, assuming all of the bills were paid, so I agreed to the settlement offer.
Now, it seems she failed to pay the hospital ER physician bill, in the amount of $759.99, which she admitted to receiving and including in my case "evaluation". When I noticed the past due bill, I emailed and left her a voicemail asking why this bill wasn't paid. She emails back saying they only paid the bills that had a lien on the claim. This was NOT what she told me prior to discussing the settlement.
I sent two additional emails asking for answers and why she is all of a sudden only paying certain bills, and she has failed to respond. The last time I heard from her was on November 23rd, 2011. I did not want to deal with an attorney, thinking this was going to be a straightforward claim and easy to settle. I wasn't asking for millions, I just wanted my medical bills paid and fair compensation for the loss of my vehicle, lost wages, and pain/suffering.
I can only say, if I ever have to deal with Direct General again, I WILL be contacting a lawyer before I ever talk to one of their claims adjusters again, and I WILL be suing for as much as I can get from them. They can only blame themselves. I will also be filing a complaint with the Louisiana Department of Insurance.