Workmen’s Auto Insurance Review: Customer Complaints, AM Best, BBB, & JD Power Ratings

Workmen’s Auto Insurance, selling nonstandard auto insurance through local independent insurance agencies, is licensed to operate in 22 U.S. states, but has most of its customers in it’s home state of California. Workmen’s was purchased this year by a major U.S. auto insurance company, Mercury General Corp., which may mean big changes for Workmen’s auto insurance customers.

If you have no problem qualifying for standard auto insurance rates, you should not insure with a nonstandard auto insurance company like Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company. Nonstandard auto insurance is car insurance for higher risk drivers some standard or preferred auto insurance companies won’t insure, such as newly licensed or inexperienced drivers, drivers with too many tickets or accidents, or a major driving violation (DUI, DUII, DWI, Reckless driving) or a recent license suspension.

Are you the type of driver that needs a company like Workmen’s Auto Insurance, or is there a better standard auto insurance company for you? Does Workmen’s Auto Insurance have too many customer complaints? How does Workmen’s compare to competing auto insurance companies like Progressive & GEICO? This blog post will help you answer these questions and review Workmen’s Auto Insurance, evaluating its JD Power, AM Best, BBB (Better Business Bureau) ratings, and customer complaints over the last three years, to let you know if Workmen’s Auto Insurance has a better than average, average, or worse than average complaint record or competitive auto insurance rates.

The information in this review can help you decide if Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company is a good company to insure your cars or trucks. The smart insurance shopper checks their eligibility with all the major companies for the right combination of coverage, acceptable claims & customer service, and best price for them. Be sure to use the ad below this paragraph (or the ad at the end of this review) to request price quotes from multiple insurance companies, and find the best insurance company for you.


Workmen’s Auto Insurance Review

This Workmen’s auto insurance review is divided into five parts, consisting of: 1. a company overview including the Workmen’s Auto Insurance website and how to get auto insurance price quotes, 2. the AM Best financial strength ratings for Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company, 3. the JD Power customer satisfaction ratings and BBB rating for Workmen’s Auto Insurance, 4. the auto insurance customer complaint records for Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company over the last three years, 5. a review summary of Workmen’s Auto Insurance, rating its customer complaint record as average, better than average, or below average, and the competitiveness of Workmen’s auto insurance rates.

1. About Workmen’s Auto Insurance

Workmen’s Auto Insurance was established in 1949 and is headquartered in Los Angeles, CA. Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company has been a privately owned company, until it’s purchase by Mercury General Corporation (Mercury Insurance) in 2015.

Workmen’s Auto Insurance sells nonstandard car insurance for drivers considered higher risk by insurance companies, such as drivers with tickets or accidents, a recent lapse or no prior insurance coverage, drivers licensed less than three years, or other reasons. If you qualify for standard or preferred auto insurance with any company, even if you want only your state’s minimum coverage, it’s probably a better & less expensive choice for you than Workmen’s Auto Insurance.

Workmen’s Auto Insurance sells its auto insurance using a network of local independent insurance agencies across the country, but most agencies representing the company are located in California and Florida. Workmen’s Auto Insurance is also available in other states, and you can call Workmen’s Auto Insurance at 800 697 6117 to see if it’s available in your state.

Due to its recent acquisition by Mercury Insurance, Workmen’s Auto Insurance may increase the number of independent insurance agencies representing the company in other states.

In California, Workmen’s Auto Insurance offers renters & condo insurance, too, but has very few policyholders for these types of insurance. I recommend not choosing a primarily nonstandard auto insurance company, like Workmen’s Auto Insurance, for your renters or condo insurance.

If you are a driver not qualifying for standard or preferred auto insurance coverage, and live in a state where Workmen’s Auto Insurance is available, you should check to see what coverage and rates Workmen’s Auto Insurance can offer you. Workmen’s Auto Insurance sells minimum liability auto insurance policies, but also offers policies with comprehensive and/or collision coverage, to insure your cars from theft or certain causes of physical damage. Terms of coverage and exclusions can vary a lot among nonstandard auto insurance companies, so shop with several agents knowledgeable about the nonstandard auto insurance companies where you live, to find the best nonstandard auto insurance company for you. If you can qualify for Progressive or GEICO, they may offer broader coverage and service.

If you are a nonstandard risk driver with poor credit, Workmen’s Auto Insurance may have lower rates for you, because it does not use your credit as a factor to determine your rates. However, some states prohibit the use of credit for auto insurance rating by all companies. California, the state with the largest market share for Workmen’s Auto Insurance, does not allow the use of credit for establishing auto insurance rates, so Workmen’s Auto Insurance not using credit does not matter to California residents, since no auto insurance company uses credit in the state.

Workmen’s Auto Insurance Website, Getting Auto Insurance Price Quotes, & Reporting Claims

You can’t get auto insurance price quotes online from the Workmen’s Auto Insurance website, but if you live in Florida or California, you can use the site to find the contact information and locations of independent insurance agencies authorized to sell Workmen’s Auto Insurance near you. Residents of other states need to call 800 697 6117 to see if Workmen’s is available in their state. Customers can also use the Workmen’s Auto Insurance website for viewing their policy information and making online payments.

Workmen’s Auto Insurance Customer Service Phone Number and Hours of Operation:

800-927-8221 from 7:00 AM to 5:00 PM PST, Monday – Friday.

Workmen’s Auto Insurance Claims Reporting Phone Number:

888-811-4054 to report your claim 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Source: Workmen’s Auto Insurance website

2. AM Best Financial Strength Ratings for Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company

Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company is not rated by AM Best for financial strength. AM Best financial strength ratings are not a measure of customer service or the quality of the claims adjusting for an insurance company, but an opinion about its ability to pay claims, remain financially solvent, and stay in business. I recommend avoiding, if possible or practical, any auto or homeowners insurance company not rated by AM Best, or with an AM Best Financial Strength Rating lower than an “A-” rating for financial strength from AM Best.

However, when it comes to the higher cost of nonstandard auto insurance in general, consumers often make their choice of company based on the lowest rates, and don’t always have many options for companies with higher AM Best ratings.

Mercury General Corp now owns Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company, and most of the Mercury Insurance companies have an “A+” AM Best Financial Strength Rating. Currently, Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company is NOT under review by AM Best, as often happens with a change of ownership, but it is possible Mercury will seek to have Workmen’s rated by AM Best in the near future.

Source: Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company AM Best Rating

3. Workmen’s Auto Insurance JD Power Ratings, BBB Ratings, & Online Complaints

JD Power Customer Satisfaction Ratings

Workmen’s Auto Insurance, like many other smaller insurance companies focusing on a specialty line, like nonstandard auto insurance, does not have enough customers at this time in any one state, region, or nationally to be included in any of the recent annual JD Power insurance customer satisfaction studies, which evaluate the largest national and regional auto or homeowners insurance companies in the USA.

Not being included in a JD Power insurance study does not make Workmen’s Auto Insurance better or worse than larger JD Power rated companies or better-known brands, but it does make it harder to objectively evaluate the quality of customer service provided by a company not rated by JD Power, like Workmen’s Auto Insurance.

Better Business Bureau (BBB) Rating

Workmen’s Auto Insurance is not rated or accredited by the Better Business Bureau at this time. However, Workmen’s Auto Insurance had 7 BBB complaints in the last three years, with 2 occurring in the last 12 months. Six complaints were for the category of a problem with service and one complaint was for billing / collections issues.

Although customer complaints are best directed toward a customer’s state department of insurance, the Better Business Bureau is a well-known and popular choice for consumers filing complaints against companies. If many customers are having difficulty resolving an issue with their insurance company and take the time to contact the Better Business Bureau about it, it’s a pretty good sign customers in general may be unhappy with the service provided by their insurance company. If a lot of complaints are made to the BBB about a company, in greater numbers than similar-sized insurance companies, it’s reflected in the BBB rating, and is one indicator the company may have more dissatisfied customers than some of its competitors.

I don’t consider an A+ BBB rating to be a reliable indication of a good insurance company, but a lower than “A” rating should be considered as a sign of below average customer service.

Workmen’s Auto Insurance is not rated by the BBB, but the number of BBB complaints for Workmen’s Auto Insurance at this time should not be a concern for its customers or potential customers. However, the next section below shows Workmen’s Auto Insurance does have a much higher number of complaints filed with a state’s department of insurance than the industry average and many competitors over the last three years.

Also, online complaints about Workmen’s Auto Insurance on sites like Yelp indicate at least some customers are receiving very poor claims service. Problems about claims are common online complaints about all auto insurance companies, but the few online complaints about Workmen’s Auto Insurance show extreme frustration with Workmen’s Auto Insurance claims processing.

Source: BBB ratings for Workmen’s Auto Insurance

4. Workmen’s Auto Insurance Complaints filed with a State Agency

The most common reasons for people to file car insurance company complaints with a state insurance department are for delays in a claim payment, unsatisfactory payment of a claim, and denial of a claim.

The auto insurance complaint statistics for Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company listed below are calculated by the NAIC, and display the ratio of the company’s U.S. market share of closed complaints compared to its 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 insurance company with complaint ratios much less than 1.00 each year, over the last three years.

So you don’t have to worry about interpreting complaint ratio numbers, I devised a rating system to help you identify if Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company has a good or poor complaint record.

Here’s how I establish my auto 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 $100,000,000 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.

Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company Auto Insurance Complaint Statistics & Ratings

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

2014 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = W (9.84)

2014 US auto insurance premium = $27,337,697

2013 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = W (12.89)

2013 US auto insurance premium = $33,702,443

2012 Auto Insurance Complaint Ratio = W (7.42)

2012 US auto insurance premium = $37,723,505

Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company has a consistently worse-than-average auto insurance complaint record each year from 2012 to 2014. Workmen’s Auto Insurance has also seen a decrease in its U.S. auto insurance market share each year since 2012, which may indicate Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company does not have competitive auto insurance rates in at least some states or zip codes where it’s available. However, now the company is owned by Mercury Insurance, its rates may become more competitive in the future.

5. Workmen’s Auto Insurance Review Summary

Here’s my summary to give you the bottom line on the customer service & rates for Workmen’s auto insurance, to see if the company perform better than average, average, or worse than average.

Workmen’s Auto Insurance customer & claims service as measured by its 2012-2014 complaint record:

Worse than average

Although an insurance company’s complaint record can be particularly useful for identifying poor claims service & claims satisfaction, it should not be the only tool you use for choosing an auto insurance company. If you qualify only for nonstandard auto insurance, it can be very hard to find a company or subsidiary with a close to average complaint record, much less a car insurance company with a better than average customer complaint record.

However, even for a nonstandard auto insurance company, the auto insurance complaint record for Workmen’s Auto Insurance is very poor, and I would not choose Workmen’s Auto Insurance unless it has a much lower rate than all other companies, and you care only about price.

Remember to consider GEICO if you qualify, and buying direct from Progressive as better possible options for you. However, if you are limited to the nonstandard auto insurance market, you should consider all the auto insurance companies available to you.

How does Workmen’s Auto Insurance compare to major auto or nonstandard auto insurance companies, like 21st Century, GEICO, Progressive, National General (formerly GMAC), Infinity, The General and others? Compare Workmen’s Auto Insurance with over forty other companies at my home page: smartshopyourcarinsurance.com.

Workmen’s Auto Insurance Rates

For pricing, the most reliable way to know if your car insurance company charges too much is to conduct your own pricing survey, by obtaining price quotes from all the leading insurance companies in your state, to find the best company for you. However, a recent rapid increase or decrease in market share may indicate whether a company has higher or lower insurance rates for at least some people.

Based on its decreasing auto insurance market share, as measured by total auto insurance premiums collected by Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company each year, as shown in Section #4 of this review, Workmen’s Auto Insurance may not have competitive auto insurance rates in at least some of the states where it operates. But as I mention in Section #4, the company’s new owner, Mercury Insurance, may look to reduce rates, improve service, and expand to more states, to increase its auto insurance market share.

It pays to shop. You may not have your choice of companies with the best complaint records, but you can still see, among the companies willing to insure you, big variations in the prices they charge for the same coverage. In addition to Workmen’s Auto Insurance, be sure to check with GEICO, Progressive, Infinity, Mercury, 21st Century, National General, Direct General, and others.

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. No single company has low rates for everyone. You have to shop with all the leading companies, to find the company with the best coverage and best price for you. 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!

Did this Workmen’s auto insurance review explain what you need to know about Workmen’s Auto Insurance Company? Tell me about it. Please leave a comment on my facebook page. Follow me on Twitter for important insurance consumer news and new blog entries at CarInsWatch.