Ameriprise / IDS Insurance Review: JD Power Ratings, AM Best Financial Strength Ratings, & Multi-Year Complaint Records

Ameriprise / IDS Insurance (Once known as American Express Insurance) is a major auto & home insurance company selling direct to the consumer in the USA, probably best known for its marketing relationship with Costco. This Ameriprise / IDS Insurance review will analyze, in addition to the company’s home & auto insurance complaint record, the change in the JD Power home & auto insurance scores & ratings for Ameriprise Insurance over the last few years, and compare them to the scores of leading competitors, like State Farm, Allstate, Progressive, Farmers, & GEICO.

In addition, this review will analyze the auto & home insurance customer complaints for Ameriprise / IDS over the last three years, and let you know if Ameriprise has a better than average, average, or worse than average complaint record. The smart insurance buyer shops for the best combination of coverage, price, and service, so be sure to use the ad below this paragraph (or the ad at the end of this review) to get price quotes from multiple insurance companies and find the best insurance company for you.

I revise or write new auto, home, & life insurance company reviews with the latest data throughout the year. Bookmark this page or my website homepage, so you can keep informed about your insurance company and its competitors.

The detailed information in this review compares Ameriprise auto & home insurance to the industry average and competing companies for customer service, claims processing performance, customer complaints, financial strength, and insurance rates, but if If you don’t want to read all the details, you can go to this review on my website here, to see at a glance if Ameriprise consistently performs better than average, average, or worse than average for customer service, claims, and pricing, and compare Ameriprise to over 40 other U.S. auto & home insurance companies.


Ameriprise / IDS Insurance Review

This Ameriprise Insurance review is divided into three sections, considering its: 1. AM Best Financial Strength Rating; 2. JD Power insurance study results; 3. Customer complaint ratings.

1. AM Best Financial Strength Rating for the Ameriprise insurance companies insuring cars & homes

Ameriprise Insurance Company & IDS Property Casualty Insurance Company had their A (Excellent) AM Best Financial Strength Rating with a stable outlook (no ratings upgrade or downgrade is expected in the near future) affirmed again on 10/01/2015, a rating they have maintained since 2011 or longer. The grade of “A” is the third highest rating for AM Best. Ameriprise has maintained this rating since I’ve been watching it, when I started this website in November 2010. I become concerned with any car or home insurance company or subsidiary with less than an A- rating for financial strength from AM Best.

2. Ameriprise Insurance JD Power Ratings Analysis for 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 & 2016

The annual JD Power insurance company studies are, in my opinion, the most objective & relevant measures of customer & claims satisfaction for an insurance company, by surveying the opinions of thousands of consumers about their auto & home insurance experience. However, the power circle ratings used by JD Power can be misleading, with some companies receiving four power circle (better than most) and five power circle (among the best) ratings, but not scoring very much above the score of the average company. This section of the review will analyze the JD Power ratings & numerical scores for Ameriprise, in all the JD Power insurance studies where it was included in the last several years, to see if its JD Power ratings truly reflect the quality of the claims & customer service for the company.

The Annual JD Power US Auto Insurance Customer Satisfaction Study

Of the eleven regional surveys composing the 2013 US study, Ameriprise had only enough auto insurance market share to be included in the California regional study, for 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015. In 2011, the study was one single national study, not a collection of regional surveys as JD Power does now.

California Region Auto Insurance Study

2015: Ameriprise scored 28 points (on a 1,000 point scale) or 2.8% above the 2015 California region average, at 831 out of 1,000 points.

Here is how Ameriprise rated in the California region for the five factors used to determine its overall auto insurance customer satisfaction score in 2015:

Policy Offerings: Five Power Circles (among the best)

Price: Four Power Circles (better than most)

Billing & Payment: Five Power Circles (among the best)

Interaction: Three Power Circles (about average)

Claims: Three Power Circles (about average)

Overall Customer Satisfaction: Four Power Circles (better than most)

State Farm scored about the same (within 3 points) as Ameriprise in the 2015 California Region study.

These companies scored .8% or more higher than Ameriprise in the 2015 California Region study (from highest scoring company to lowest scoring company): USAA, Wawanesa, Hartford, Auto Club of Southern California.

These companies scored 1.4% or more lower than Ameriprise in the 2015 California Region study (from highest scoring company to lowest scoring company): Esurance, GEICO, Progressive, Allstate, CSAA, Farmers, Safeco, Nationwide, Liberty Mutual, 21st Century, Mercury, Travelers, & Infinity.

2014 (CA only): Ameriprise received the second highest rating of four power circles (better than most), scoring 824 points out of 1,000 points, which is 29 points (2.9%) better than the regional average score of 795 points on the 1,000 point scale. In my opinion, based on its point score in California, Ameriprise scored enough above the regional study average, to be considered providing above average auto insurance customer satisfaction in California. Here’s how Ameriprise compares to several other major auto insurance companies: Hartford (scoring 10 points, or 1.0%, below Ameriprise), State Farm (scoring 11 points, or 1.1%, below Ameriprise) GEICO (scoring 29 points, or 2.9% below Ameriprise), Allstate (scoring 33 points, or 3.3%, below Ameriprise), Progressive (scoring 42 points, or 4.2%, below Ameriprise), & Farmers (scoring a big difference of 52 points, or 5.2% below Ameriprise). For 2014, Ameriprise improved on its 2012 score in this regional study by 26 points. Ameriprise rated four power circles (better than most) in the categories of Pricing, Policy Offerings, Claims, Billing & Payment, but received only three power circles (about average) in the category of Company Interaction.

2013 (CA only): Ameriprise received the second highest rating of four power circles (better than most), scoring 798 points out of 1,000 points, which is 21 points (2.1%) better than the regional average score of 777 points on the 1,000 point scale. In my opinion, based on its point score in California, Ameriprise scored enough above the regional study average, to be considered providing above average auto insurance customer satisfaction in California. State Farm (scoring 14 points, or 1.4%, above Ameriprise), The Hartford (scoring 13 points, or 1.3%, above Ameriprise), & Wawanesa (scoring 22 points, or 2.2%, above Ameriprise) scored much higher in the CA study. Both GEICO & Auto Club of Southern CA scored only a few points higher than Ameriprise in the CA study, putting them at about the same level of auto insurance customer satisfaction as Ameriprise. Here’s how Ameriprise compares to several other major auto insurance companies: Progressive (scoring 13 points, or 1.3%, below Ameriprise), Allstate (scoring 16 points, or 1.6%, below Ameriprise), & Farmers (scoring a HUGE difference of 61 points, or 6.1% below Ameriprise). For 2013, Ameriprise improved on its 2012 score in this regional study by 6 points.

2012 (CA only): Ameriprise received the rating of three power circles (about average), scoring 792 points out of 1,000 points, which is 7 points (.7%) above the 2012 regional average score of 785 points on the 1,000 point scale. In my opinion, based on its only slightly above average point score in California, Ameriprise should be considered providing average auto insurance customer satisfaction in this region for 2012.

2011 US National Study: Ameriprise received the rating of four power circles (better than most), up from its three power circle rating in 2010, and scored 804 points out of 1,000 points, which is 14 points (1.4%) above the national average score of 790 points on the 1,000 point scale. In my opinion, based on its point score in the 2011 national study, Ameriprise scored only enough above the average to be considered providing slightly above average auto insurance customer satisfaction in the USA for 2011. In spite of its four power circle rating in 2011, there are too many companies scoring about the same, or much better, for Ameriprise to be considered “better than most” in 2011.

California Region Auto Insurance Satisfaction Summary: Ameriprise scored 1.4%, .7%, 2.1%, 2.9%, and 2.8% above the region average each year in the 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, & 2015 studies respectively, showing a strong trend of above average auto insurance customer satisfaction in California. However, Ameriprise rated about average in the important categories of claims & customer interaction in 2015.

Don’t make the assumption Ameriprise has competitive auto insurance rates only in California, because it did not have enough auto insurance market share to be included in the ten other regional studies. Some insurance companies, like Ameriprise & Amica, selling auto insurance in almost all US states, are large enough to be among the top 20 groups of auto insurance companies nationally, but often don’t have a large market share in any one state or region. A company with a large auto insurance market share is not an indication of competitive rates. A rapidly growing market share can be a sign of competitive rates, but a company with a small market share and flat growth is not an indication of competitive or uncompetitive rates. As you can see below, in my analysis of the ratings for Ameriprise in the 2013, 2014, & 2015 JD Power auto insurance purchasing experience studies, those auto insurance shoppers buying from Ameriprise were very satisfied with the company’s rates.

Some auto insurance companies may have very good rates, but do not advertise in the media. Some of these companies rely on insurance agents to market for them, and some of insurance companies market based on affiliation with certain groups or using marketing partners, like the relationship Ameriprise has with Costco. In my home state of Oregon, Ameriprise has never been one of the auto insurance companies with a large market share in the state, but I know for some Oregon drivers, they have very good rates.

As for auto insurance customer satisfaction, I’m somewhat reluctant to use the opinion of Ameriprise customers in California to be representative for Ameriprise customers nationally. The new regional format of this JD Power study, which was revised in 2012 & again in 2013, is more useful to auto insurance consumers, since every state’s auto insurance market is unique. For example, Tennessee Farm Bureau is not a large auto insurance company nationally, so it was never included in the national study, but it’s a large auto insurance company if you live in Tennessee, and now its included in the Southeast regional study. But auto insurance consumers with a few companies, like Ameriprise, where their company has a significant, but relatively small market share in almost all states, don’t benefit from the new regional format. For Ameriprise customers & potential customers outside of California, a survey score based on the opinions of Ameriprise auto insurance customers throughout the US, would be more reliable.

If you are considering Ameriprise, and live outside of California, pay special attention to the auto & home insurance complaint ratings for Ameriprise I show you below in section #3.

The Annual JD Power Auto Insurance Purchase Experience Study & Pricing

2016: Ameriprise scored 2 points (on a 1,000 point scale) or .2% above the 2016 JD Power Auto Insurance Purchase Experience study average, at 828 out of 1,000 points.

The 2016 U.S. Insurance Shopping Study was based on responses from more than 17,000 shoppers who requested an auto insurance price quote from at least one competitive insurer in the past 9 months and includes more than 50,000 unique customer evaluations of insurers. The study was fielded in April, July & October 2015, and January 2016.

Here is how Ameriprise rated in the factors used to determine its overall satisfaction score for the auto insurance purchase experience in 2016:

Pricing: Four Power Circles (better than most)

Website: Not rated

Local Agent: Not rated

Call Center Representative: Three Power Circles (about average)

Policy Offerings: Three Power Circles (about average)

Overall Auto Insurance Purchase Satisfaction: Three Power Circles (about average)

These companies also rated better than average for lower auto insurance rates in the 2016 JD Power Auto Insurance Purchase Experience study: USAA, Erie, Liberty Mutual, The Hartford, American Family, Automobile Club Group, Travelers, CSAA Insurance Group, and Mercury.

These companies rated worse than average for lower auto insurance rates in the 2016 JD Power Auto Insurance Purchase Experience study: Progressive, Allstate, 21st Century, and MetLife.

2015: Ameriprise scored 36 points (on a 1,000 point scale) or 3.6% above the 2015 JD Power Auto Insurance Purchase Experience study average, at 869 out of 1,000 points.

Here is how Ameriprise rated in the factors used to determine its overall satisfaction score for the auto insurance purchase experience in 2015:

Pricing: Five Power Circles (among the best)

Website: Four Power Circles (better than most)

Local Agent: Not rated. (Ameriprise does not have local agents)

Call Center Representative: Five Power Circles (among the best)

Policy Offerings: Five Power Circles (among the best)

Overall Auto Insurance Purchase Satisfaction: Five Power Circles (among the best)

These companies also rated better than average for lower auto insurance rates in the 2015 JD Power Auto Insurance Purchase Experience study: USAA, Erie, The Hartford, California State Auto Association, Amica Mutual, Liberty Mutual, Auto Club Group, Travelers, & GEICO.

These companies rated worse than average for lower auto insurance rates in the 2015 JD Power Auto Insurance Purchase Experience study: Progressive, Allied, & Mercury.

2014: Ameriprise received the rating of four power circles (better than most), and was tied with American Family for fifth highest scoring company in the study, at 835 points out of 1,000 points, 14 points (1.4%) above the study average score of 821 out of 1,000 points. Ameriprise received the highest rating of five power circles (among the best) for price and the policy purchase experience through the Ameriprise call center.

2013: Ameriprise received the rating of four power circles (better than most), and was the third highest scoring company in the study, with 846 points out of 1,000 points, 18 points (1.8%) above the study average score of 828 out of 1,000 points.

2012: Ameriprise received the rating of three power circles (about average), scoring 830 points out of 1,000 points, which is 2 points (.2%) above the regional average of 828 points on the 1,000 point scale.

JD Power Auto Insurance Purchase Experience Summary: Ameriprise received the rating of four power circles (better than most) for the category of Pricing in the 2016 study, after having the highest rating for Pricing in the 2013, 2014, & 2015 studies, which means many 2016 auto insurance shoppers contacting Ameriprise for an auto insurance quote still find the pricing lower than some other companies. As you may know from shopping for auto insurance, some companies promising large savings, or saving some people lots of money, do not save everyone money. No survey of customer opinions about rates can be depended upon to assure the rates a company offers you will be high or low, compared to other companies. However, when a large number of people surveyed agree an auto insurance company has good rates, there’s a good chance the company may have good rates for you, too.

The Annual JD Power US Auto Claims Satisfaction Study

2014: Ameriprise was not included in this year’s study.

2013: Ameriprise was not included in this year’s study.

2012: Ameriprise was not included in this year’s study.

2011: Ameriprise was not included in this year’s study.

The Annual JD Power US National Homeowners Insurance Customer Satisfaction Study

2014: Ameriprise was not included in this year’s study.

2013: Ameriprise was not included in this year’s study.

2012: Ameriprise was not included in this year’s study.

2011: Ameriprise was not included in this year’s study.

The Annual JD Power US Property Claims Satisfaction Study

2015: Ameriprise was not included in this year’s study.

2014: Ameriprise was not included in this year’s study.

2013: Ameriprise was not included in this year’s study.

2012: Ameriprise was not included in this year’s study.

3. Ameriprise Insurance companies Auto & Home Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

Another measure of quality for an auto or home insurance company is the number of upheld complaints filed against it with a state’s insurance regulatory authority, adjusted for the company’s market share. This Section of the review will show you if Ameriprise has a better than average, average, or below average complaint record for 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 & 2014.

This part of the review provides valuable information, to help you decide if Ameriprise, or a competitor, like Allstate or State Farm, is a better insurance company for you. By choosing a company with a better-than-average complaint history, or at least avoiding companies with consistent, worse-than-average complaint records, you decrease the likelihood you will have a negative experience, when you need your auto or home insurance company.

The complaint statistics, called complaint ratios, used in this Ameriprise Insurance review are the number of upheld complaints filed against each of the Ameriprise companies with a state’s insurance regulatory authority, adjusted for each subsidiary’s market share, as determined by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

The complaint ratios for the Ameriprise insurance companies listed below display the ratio of the company’s U.S. Market Share of closed complaints compared to the company’s U.S. Market Share of premiums for a specific policy type. Complaint ratios lower than “1” have less complaints than average, and complaint ratios over “1” have more complaints than average. The lower the complaint ratio, the less complaints against the company. Ideally, you want to choose an auto or home insurance company with complaint ratios less than 1.00 each year, at least over the most recent three years.

So you don’t have to worry about comparing complaint ratio numbers, I devised a rating system to help you identify if Ameriprise has a good or poor complaint record.

Here’s how I establish my auto & homeowners insurance complaint ratings:

B = Better than average. Insurance companies with complaint ratios less than 75% of the average insurance company.

C = Average. Insurance companies with complaint ratios from 75% to 125% of the average insurance company. I use a minus sign (-) to indicate auto insurance complaint ratios slightly worse than average (1.01 to 1.25) and a plus sign (+) for auto insurance complaint ratios slightly better than average (.99 to .75).

W = Worse than average. Insurance companies with complaint ratios more than 125% of the average insurance company.

I prefer companies with the longest recent history of “B” ratings each year (or at least in the most recent three years). Companies with “B” or “C+” ratings are okay, too, particularly if they have less market share, with less than $50,000,000 in premiums for that line of insurance (auto or home) each year. I prefer to avoid companies with a consistently higher than average number of complaints, or with inconsistent complaint records, unless there are mitigating factors, such as very small market share.

Ameriprise has two subsidiary companies insuring personal use vehicles in the USA. The use of more than one auto or home insurance subsidiary company is usually to offer different pricing, or operate in a certain US state or states. Different subsidiaries can be used to offer specific pricing for certain market segments, such as drivers with lower or higher risk expectations (for example, drivers with a clean driving record vs. drivers with tickets and accidents), or for certain occupations or affiliations.

Ameriprise Insurance Company Auto Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

B = Better than Average C = Average W = Worse than Average

2014 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = C+ (.86)

2014 US auto insurance premium = $37,212,236

2013 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = W (1.33)

2013 US auto insurance premium = $32,740,569

2012 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = W (1.68)

2012 US auto insurance premium = $27,011,573

2011 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = W (1.83)

2011 US auto insurance premium = $18,456,333

2010 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = W (2.45)

2010 US auto insurance premium = $10,349,969

2009 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = W (4.13)

The majority of customers insured through Ameriprise, are insured through the subsidiary listed below, IDS Property Casualty Insurance Company. The subsidiary listed above, Ameriprise Insurance Company, insures private passenger vehicles in Georgia and New York only (at this time), and has a small, but growing market share in these two states. The IDS subsidiary had almost twice the number of auto insurance customers than the Ameriprise subsidiary in New York, based on the average of 2010 & 2011 direct written auto insurance premium in the state (Ameriprise = $10.949 million versus IDS = $18.263 million). The rapid growth in premium for the Ameriprise subsidiary from 2010 to 2012 may mean it’s a newer auto insurance product in NY & GA, being sold instead of the IDS subsidiary. Or, it could be a standard or nonstandard auto insurance product for those customers not qualifying for the IDS subsidiary.

The auto insurance complaint record for Ameriprise Insurance Company is worse than average each year from 2009 to 2013, but complaint ratios for small subsidiaries are greatly influenced by a few complaints. In 2013, this subsidiary has 4 auto insurance complaints. It also had 4 complaints in 2011, 5 complaints in 2012, and 3 complaints each year in 2010 & 2014. You can see how the complaint ratio becomes much smaller as the market share has grown, even though the number of complaints have been about the same from year to year. However, this subsidiary has a consistently higher than average number of auto insurance complaints each year, until 2014, when its number of auto insurance complaints was 86% of the average.

IDS Property Casualty Insurance Company Auto Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

B = Better than Average C = Average W = Worse than Average

2014 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = W (1.72)

2014 US auto insurance premium = $656,591,968

2013 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = W (1.33)

2013 US auto insurance premium = $603,318,793

2012 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = C+ (.83)

2012 US auto insurance premium = $581,389,731

2011 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.61)

2011 US auto insurance premium = $570,283,020

2010 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = C+ (.77)

2010 US auto insurance premium = $559,354,576

2009 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.60)

IDS Property Casualty Insurance Company is the largest Ameriprise subsidiary insuring private passenger vehicles, and operates in almost all 50 states. IDS had a slowly deteriorating auto insurance complaint record from 2011 – 2014, and had 72% more auto insurance complaints than the industry average in 2014. However, the steady increase in auto insurance market share from 2010 to 2014 for IDS is another sign, in addition to the JD Power survey results, Ameriprise offers competitive auto insurance rates.

Ameriprise has one subsidiary company selling residential property (home, renters, condo, & mobile home) insurance in the USA:

IDS Property Casualty Insurance Company Home Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

B = Better than Average C = Average W = Worse than Average

2014 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = C (1.00)

2014 US home insurance premium = $314,332,416

2013 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = C- (1.24)

2013 US home insurance premium = $257,468,871

2012 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.51)

2012 US home insurance premium = $200,666,464

2011 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = C+ (.76)

2011 US home insurance premium = $162,311,819

2010 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = C+ (.77)

2010 US home insurance premium = $142,680,942

2009 Home Insurance Complaint Ratio = B (.56)

Although Ameriprise/IDS sold over 314 million dollars of home insurance premium in the US for 2014, it wasn’t big enough to be included in any of the JD Power home insurance studies, so these home insurance complaint ratings serve as the best objective measure of home insurance customer service for Ameriprise.

IDS Property Casualty Insurance Company had an average to better than average home insurance complaint history from 2010 to 2012, but had 24% more home insurance complaints in 2013 than the industry average.

The home insurance market share for IDS Property Casualty Insurance Company increase each year since 2010, which may indicate IDS Property Casualty Insurance Company has competitive home insurance rates.

Using JD Power ratings & my complaint ratings to choose an insurance company can help you increase the odds you will experience acceptable service, but there can never be a guarantee of adequate service. You can have a terrible experience with any insurance company, and as careful as you may be selecting an insurance company, you may feel you made the wrong choice after you have a claim. Some companies keep most of their customers happy, but most companies keep a majority of their customers happy. This is why I consider price and coverage so important when choosing an auto or home insurance company, if you eliminate those companies most likely to provide an unacceptable level of service. Consider my insurance company reviews, as well as your personal needs, when getting auto & home insurance quotes, and weigh the combination of coverage, price & service offered by each company, to make the best choice for you.

Thanks for reading this review of Ameriprise auto & home insurance. You can find other reviews of leading auto, home, & life insurance companies on my website & blog. Many people pay too much for their insurance because they never shop for better rates, or if they do shop, they don’t check the rates of enough companies. For a lot of people, the best insurance company is the one with the lowest rates. The ad below will take you to links to get online quotes from leading Home, Auto, Health, & Life insurance companies in your area. Choose the type of insurance, put in your zip, and start shopping now!

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