I have been a customer of Nationwide Insurance Company (Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company) for the past 20+ years. I have been in the Real Estate business (owning and managing my own Real Estate). During the course of that time, I have had to file claims from time to time for reasons such as a fire (caused by someone working on a house next door), water damage, storm damage, etc... In almost all cases, I was forced to "sue" Nationwide insurance company in order for them to pay the claims.
I also have auto insurance with "Nationwide". I have not had an accident in over twenty years. Recently, a deer ran into the side of my car causing damage. After filing a report with the company, I was told that I had two choices. To have a Nationwide adjuster estimate my auto, or go to a "Blue Ribbon" repair shop to get an estimate.
The truth is that what they told me was not correct. By law there is a third choice, and that is going to an auto body shop of my own choice.
I soon discovered that their "Blue Ribbon" shops have a secret agreement with Nationwide, and the estimates are written with Nationwide supplied guidelines. The "Blue Ribbon" shops are not called Nationwide repair shops, nor do they tell you that they are "Nationwide" shops.
When I drove my car to the "Blue Ribbon" shop, I asked if I would be getting an "unbiased" estimate and I was told that I would not, they told me that they estimate based on Nationwide supplied guidelines (they were very reluctent to disclose that information to me).
Upon realizing that I knew of their secret relationship with the insurance company, the man refused to write an estimate, and told me that he would have a Nationwide agent estimate my car at my home.
When the Nationwide agent arrived at my home, he looked at my car, removed some of the deer hair (evidence) that had been stuck to the side of my car (without my permission), and then told me that he was going to write up the claim as if I was struck my another car, thus causing my auto insurance rates to rise. He walked to his auto, then returned a minute later and removed the remainder of the deer hair from my car.
I immediately demanded that he return some of the deer hair that he removed from my car, he told me that he needed it for testing, then a minute later, he said that he lost it. I called the police, who arrived at my home (while he was still there) and they wrote a report where he admitted taking the hair from my car. I truly believe that had I not gotten the police to write a report, the adjuster would have not admitted seeing the deer hair that he removed from my car once he left my home. I have hired a lawyer which will cost me more that the claim is worth.
To this date (over 3 months after my car was struck by the deer), Nationwide Insurance Company has not paid anything on the claim.
I am telling my story because I am about to retire and will no longer need insurance by this company (Nationwide). In case anyone wonders why I remained a Nationwide customer for so long, it was for (2) reasons:
firstly, they wanted my "large premiums" so it was not in their best interest to cancel my policies, and secondly I believed that I would have been reported as a "bad risk" to other insurance companies (other insurance agents advised me of this when I inquired about moving my policies to other insurance companies, even though ALL my claims were valid and Nationwide paid ALL my claims after I initiated law suits against them.
Hopefully my story will help someone else avoid similar bad experiences with this company.