SAN ANTONIO, TX, MISSOURI -- Please forgive any typos. I am working with a broken laptop. This is the 4th time that I have typed and lost all of my information. First round of asking for help. On 6/26/11, I walked into my home to find that it had been burglarized. I had been in and out of town, and it is an unusual case, as the police say that someone had been living in my home.
I have an insurance policy with USAA insurance. I have been through 4 or 5 adjusters; I have given way too much information about my life, I provided information from slavery, on all four sides of the family until now, as I was asked by one adjuster, and I have it in writing, "How could people of color afford such things?" and that of my February of 2008 to help care for my mother.
Janice, my mother, passed away in July of 2008. She had renters insurance in my home. My sister, Holly and I cared for my Grandmother at home until my sister moved back to Michigan to work for the Department of Commerce in October 2009. I stayed in Missouri and worked for US Bank through Kelly. After my job ended, I traveled around. I helped my sister pack up her apartment in Michigan and move to Atlanta, GA in January 2011. The home was never vacant for more than a few weeks.
I traveled back and forth between, Michigan, Georgia, and Missouri. In February of this year, my step-grandmother, who had lived in my home until she went to Beauvais, after my mother's passing (she lived in my home, until October 2009, at that point she moved to Beauvais nursing home, on Magnolia, in Saint Louis, MO) in February she passed away.
On the same date of her funeral in March, my maiden aunt, Barbara left the funeral for the emergency room, where she was diagnosed with Uterine Cancer and subsequently had surgery. She has been going through chemotherapy and my sister Holly and I have been up and down the highways taking care of her, as we both work to rebuild our lives. Again, the home was my primary residence and was never vacant for more than a few weeks. On June 26, 2011, I returned to my home to find that it had not only been burglarized, but it appeared to have been lived in.
A realtor who was selling a home down the street had a sign in our yard, with a for sale sign, with the arrow pointing to a home down the street (it gave the appearance that my home was for sale). At one point, I let the mail collect when I was caring for my aunt, and the post office put a vacant sign on the mail box. We think that this is when thieves moved in and burglarized and trashed the place.
I have neighbors who have witnessed strange people and reported this to the police on the day of the burglary and have called twice since to report people lurking about my home. My mother was an OCD neat freak and the house was so torn apart that it looks like an episode of Hoarders. I had many high-end handbags, as did my mother, lots of crystal, and jewelry. I inherited a lot from my mother and grandmother.
I have answered questions about my lifestyle, worked with USAA's insurance investigator. I have receipts for over $14,000 of jewelry that I purchased when I worked on Wall Street. I have bank statements of things that I owned, credit card statements of what my mother owned, and copies of credit cards that my grandmother had. I have provided pictures.
My sister Holly has answered questions (she had to establish that she had a home in Michigan), answer questions about what she received and why it looked like I had more (I did not, Holly's things were not stolen, mine were). My mattresses have been slashed, the fridge broken, the oven broken, thousands of gnats in my home, as USAA asked me to keep the broken fridge, as I went through 5 claims people. I thought that I provided way too much information on.
In some instances, I have the receipts for items, pictures, and have located them on the bank statements and have been asked to provide more documentation. My home is unlivable. If the city came in they would condemn it, the thieves left urine, chemicals (perhaps Meth) fecal matter, and more all over the entire house. The house was black and thick with gnats. 18 bug bombs later, millions of gnat bodies covered everything in my home, and the poison permeated everything.
And now my aunt, in addition to the chemotherapy that she is enduring, has diabetic issues, that may cause her to lose her legs. As an update, her leg was amputated, and she has since died. My sister Holly and I are her only relatives. After the tornado, here in Saint Louis, I looked at my policy and upgraded it.
USAA sent a letter to homeowners advising that we do so. I think that between what I purchased, what my grandmother and my mother left me, I had $100,000 in jewelry. I may have had $10,000-$45,000 in jewelry coverage, when I upgraded the policy, I added the jewelry on. USAA sent a letter that do to my credit. They were disallowing the jewelry coverage.
After reading my policy I pointed out to my public adjuster that this was illegal in the state of Missouri, over $20,000 in silver was taken. I may have had $10,000 in coverage, it would depend on how the multiple policies that I paid on the same residence plays out. I had a total of $299,000 for one policy of coverage for personal items and with damages. My claim may be between $270,000 - $280,000. The claims investigator is telling me everything is in the hands of the adjuster, just get in my receipts and pictures, and the adjuster is stalling that he must turn everything over to the investigator first.
I have spent me, that should have been spent on family and getting my home and life back in order jumping through hoops. I would like to retain your services, as I have made a commitment to communication with USAA Part, get everything to the claims investigator and the insurance company over the weekend. I do not want to do this all in vain. I feel like I have been violated twice. You have a good reputation on and I would like to hire your firm to assist me in finishing this claim.
I was contacted this morning, Friday, September 30, 2011 by another Claims Investigator, out of Las Vegas. This will be my 3rd claims investigator assigned to my case. To date, I have only spoken to one, Kyle, and I no longer feel comfortable communicating with the insurance company without someone on my side. I have had coverage with USAA since 2006, however, the day after the tornado in Saint Louis, I updated the policy. As you will note, I did not adequate jewelry, silver, or fur coverage. Second round of asking for help Details of complaint: My original policy began with USAA in 2007.
Since my emails to Mary the state of Missouri Department of Insurance Regulation. They have not been able to help much either way, to date, although USAA has retaliated, and although they have stalled, said they were too busy with other perils of nature, they are now trying to put me out on the street, although my home is unlivable, and put me out for Christmas and New Years. They also went in and purged much of the data off of my web account, including emails and policies. All the policies have been purged.
I purchased this home in 2005. At the time I lived in New York and had renters insurance on my New York Apartment, my mother lived in the house full time I traveled with my job and I had a policy on the house. In October 2007, my mother was diagnosed with ALS, Lou Gehrig's. My sister lived in Michigan and had a ranch style condo covered through USAA. All USAA policies held by my sister, my mother, and myself, fell under my dad, Ronald.
My sister walked away from her job to care for my mother. During that period the pipes burst. USAA paid her about $15,000 and then dropped her, and her claim, stating that there was an invoice from the cleaners that had a weight on the Unsavable clothing they returned to her. For that reason they dropped her claim, stating that she added an Unsavable clothing box, even though USAA sent her the invoices. They closed her banking account, everything. As my sister was the only one caring for my mother, she lost everything and had to declare chapter 7.
My Dad, a diehard ex-military man had USAA on his two homes and 5 or 6 cars. There was never a claim. On February 14, 2008 I walked away from my job in New York to help care for my mother. I notified USAA. In July 2008 my mother, a nurse, passed away. I notified USAA and continued to care for my grandmother in my home until October 2009. At that time my sister got a job, as the assistant manager for quality assurance in Dearborn, MI. She did not have much to move, as she lost everything to water and mold when the pipes in her home in Michigan broke in several locations.
Holly got a Uhaul and moved her things to Michigan. Holly has a lease, a business card, and paperwork, from December 2010 where the moving company picked up her furniture for storage, and then where to deliver it when she found a place in Georgia. My grandmother was 110, she loved Xmas. We left the Xmas tree and lights up from Xmas 2010 and had a special 2nd Xmas for her and my Aunt Barbara, the cancer, in February 2011.
Holly and I actually missed the first Xmas in December, we were in Michigan packing her apartment. Lena was staying in Beauvais Manor by that time, but she could come for a day home as well as my aunt who was utilizing rehab to get better. My step-grandmother is in the photo below along with how the house looked just months prior to the break in. There was a lot of sorrow. We lost my mother in July 2008, my sister Holly paternal Grandmother (who always treated me as a grandmother) six weeks later.
In October, 2008 we lost Holly's paternal Uncle. Then in July 2009 we lost Holly's paternal, youngest aunt, it was just too much. Holly's job was over, I came to Michigan for a while in April, I had been working for US Bank in Saint Louis and working through Kelly Services so I was in the home alone. Holly decided to move to Atlanta. Her things were picked up by the movers and were to be placed in storage until she found a home in Atlanta. All this information was given to USAA.
After the death of my grandmother, on the very same day as her funeral, my Aunt Barbara was diagnosed with Uterine Cancer. Literally, we left the funeral for the emergency room. My aunt had surgery. After a recovery period she was to start chemotherapy. I joined Holly, who was living at an extended stay hotel to find a home. She decided to find something that my aunt could stay in. I went to Michigan with her, helped drive the car from Michigan to Atlanta, and we looked for a place for her to live.
After finding one, we returned to Saint Louis as my aunt was starting chemotherapy or had started and I was taking her to her chemo sessions. So I was back and forth out of town a few times. I do know that in April there was a major tornado that hit Saint Louis, Missouri and ripped the roof off of the airport and left devastation following highway 270.
I received a letter from USAA about the tornadoes and asking if I had enough coverage. I really took that to heart and I changed my policy. The primary changes were for the structure of the house, but I did add a jewelry Ryder. I inherited much from my maternal Grandmother, my maternal step-Grandmother (she is the one who passed in February 2011) and my mother, as well as my own things.
I received a call asking if I was going to cancel the other policies on the home and the renters insurance. I let them know that had been canceled long ago. The customer service person indicated it was not. USAA will not send a copy of this update. I did add $40-$45k in jewelry coverage and was still woefully under covered.
I received a letter stating that due to my credit history, which took a traumatic hit during my mother's illness, the policy was changed. What I did not know was that I continued to pay for 3 policies after USAA was told time and time and time again. After the report of the theft, I was under investigation for 6 months. I was never notified officially and I cooperated spending time, that I was told that I would be reimbursed for, due to my cooperation. I was paying out of pocket for everything.
I sought assistance and got a Public Adjuster Inman and Associates, who have been a sad disappointment. It has been 18 months since my claim. Missouri law and my own policy have not been followed. Since USAA does not give money back, but gleefully took it and continues to take it, then I should have additional coverage. As credit score cannot be utilized in Missouri, my jewelry rider should be acknowledged. USAA has had a spreadsheet of stolen items for 6 or 7 months. The public adjuster and C are still ambling around on the dwelling. This is my claim and I want to replace my stolen items. I would like my ALE that is due.
This company has put such a financial strain on me that it has taken its toll on me, my sister, and my aunt, who passed away November 19. Additional family members six of seven have passed away during this time. Our Aunt was our mother's older sister. I do not want to spend another Thanksgiving (which ended up being a trek to get my aunt's body. Medicare wanted to know after her amputation that she had a place to go (prior to all of this she lived on her home). Barbara had too many steps to return to my home and it has been 18 months and Josh is in charge of stolen items.
It has been 18 months since the theft. The criminals were living in the home, they defecated, urinated, stole the motors or some workers from all 3 fridges in the home. Since it took USAA 3 months to come to the house it was filled, like a horror movie, with millions of gnats. Over 18 bug bombs were set off, there are gnat bodies and poison in everything. The police found tons of medicine boxes and pots with stuff stuck in them, I was told my home was possibly used for meth.
ARRS the restoration service deemed almost everything as unusable. Now USAA is questioning ARRS and there has been no movement on the home. Furniture that was in the home was broken and almost ALL household items placed in the garage. The gnats are back. If items were save-able, they are not now. All furniture in the home down to the dishes were purchased new when I bought the house for my mother.
Her partner and fiancé had died and this was a new beginning. The only things not new, were the dining room set, the master bedroom set and the 2nd bedroom set and one television in the basement. All other furniture was purchased in 2005 along with the carpet for the basement. Except for the China, all dishes, mixers, toaster, microwave, pots, pans dinette set, living room furniture, basement furniture and patio furniture were new. As well as all decorations.
My grandfather fought in WWII, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War. There were many heirlooms that he sent home. I had photos and I had to show what I inherited verses my sister. There was much silver, Waterford, and Japanese ivory and such, there are pictures of the items in the home, and I had to account why I had photographs of the items and the photographs were clearly years old.
USAA has put me in a financial bind. I could lose this home. I want to know why we cannot work on replacement of theft which is what I asked for from day one, the house really needs to be gutted, disinfected and fixed. I need to know how much I have in coverage since I was paying for 3 policies. I have read the policy and found all the breaches, not Inman and Associates, my public adjusters, they seem to be inept. I am begging for any assistance as rules in my policy have been ignored, Missouri law, and it is 18 months, this is crazy.
I don't want to live in a hotel anymore. I want funds immediately for replacement of stolen items and a clear answer of how much coverage I have since I was paying for 3 policies until 6 or 7 months ago. I will email all information instead of attaching it. USAA has been busy since I contacted you purging documents that have been on file since 2007. I believe Josh, the San Antonio Adjuster for USAA may have gotten rid of everything with his name on it.
My Aunt Barbara died, her memorial service was Friday, December 14, 2012 and according to Chris and his boss Kevin, USAA adjuster and his supervisor, they are trying to put me out, even though I have unlimited Dwelling, and it was USAA dragging their feet, and then on the theft, I have about $ 50,000 in replacement receipts, USAA gave me $20,000 against the theft, now Josh is saying not one more dime until the CLAIM is ESTABLISHED. What have they been doing for almost two years?
Update: USAA stopped paying for my dwelling, although I have unlimited dwelling. It has been established that from 2007-2012 I was paying multiple policies on the same home. The city has condemned the home and I am seeking a lawyer and media coverage.
SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS -- I have been a member of USAA for 26 years. I never had an issue with them. The reason is most likely due to having filed only one claim in my 26 years of membership. My view of them started changing approximately one year ago when I attempted to refinance a property through USAA.
Having been a loyal USAA member of 26 years they were the first company that I went to for a refinance loan. However, from the moment the application process started I was getting the runaround. After I initiated my application I heard nothing for weeks. When I finally called to follow up I was asked for more information for the underwriters. Now keep in mind my situation had never changed. Gainfully employed, never missed a payment of anything, yet I kept getting asked for more information.
After being asked and providing more information I heard nothing. I called every week with no success in reaching the person servicing my loan. One and a half months went by and when I refused to wait any longer, I called USAA and after some ranting and raving was told that the person servicing my load had left the company. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. Every month of delay was costing me $300 in interest that I could have been saving had they just processed and approved my loan application.
My application was then passed onto another 'service representative'. Actually two people were assigned to my loan application with the promise that they would get my loan application processed. Then the 'I need more information' game started again. The underwriters needed more information which turned out to be the same information that I had already supplied! Now it was three months since I first applied for the loan. I had it and asked if USAA would refund me my $350 application fee that I would go elsewhere. They did and I refinanced through another institution with no difficulty.
Now arriving at today - another and much larger USAA disappointment. As most of you are aware the US economy has been shaken to it's knees by the corruption on Wall Street and the reckless behavior of the banking industry giving loans to millions of people who could never afford to pay them back. Because of this the housing market imploded. Many banks have realized the hurt that has fallen on homeowners and at a minimum, yes at a minimum had allowed homeowners to refinance their homes for the purpose of getting a lower interest rate. NOT USAA!
I have a home equity loan with USAA at a 7.5 interest rate that was taken out four years ago. Now with interest rates around 4.5% many banks have worked with their customers to offer them a lower rate. NOT USAA! They refuse to offer me a lower interest rate. I never asked for them to reduce the amount that I owe only the interest rate. They offer some nonsense excuse that they cannot lower the rate because the loan is locked in! I thought every mortgage in America was locked in, yet many many banks have shown some understanding and assistance to their customers by being willing to alter conditions.
These banks recognize that these economic times are quite different than they were four or five years ago and are willing to work with their customers. NOT USAA! By given some nonsensical excuse why they cannot offer me a lower interest rate. They are quite content collector the extra four hundred dollars a month from me in interest. Straight profit to their bottom line when fully knowing that the going mortgage rates are around 4.5%.
USAA speaks a good game in regard to offering stellar customer satisfaction, but I assure you that this is one customer who has not once, but twice been horribly abused by their lacking of professionalism, followup/follow through, their greedy nature, and their total disregard for their customers. I just talked with them today about lowering my interest rate. Again not altering what I owe. I borrowed it so I will repay it.
But to hold fast to a high interest rate when the only outcome is extra money to them is inexcusable. THEY ABSOLUTELY REFUSED to lower the rate stating how they would like to work with me and help me, while at the same time refusing to reduce the interest rate on my loan.
This company is far from being customer-centric. How can they sleep at night knowing that they have the ability to instantly help a homeowner who is having trouble making ends meet and refuses simply based on the statement 'we would like to help you, but we cannot offer you a lower rate'. This is a company who seems more content putting the squeeze on their customer so they can fill their coffers with the customers hard earned money.
Just to share with you - I have called USAA four times over the past year asking for any type of relief from this high interest rate. Again while stating how informed they are regarding today's economic conditions, they are quite content sitting back and stealing hundreds of dollars from me every month and are totally unwilling to offer me any type of lower rate. I have been a loyal customer of 26 years. Now I am strongly considering going to an attorney to see is I can put some legal pressure on them. Does this sound like a company who is focused on providing quality service and products to their customers?
"Well we're sorry, but you took this loan out four years ago and locked in the rate. Sorry, we would really like to help you, but after all you locked the rate in and there's nothing we can do about it!" Give me a break. What makes USAA so different from any other bank who is willing to work with their customers. Just six months ago I approached Citibank with the same request. They altered my loan down to a 4.5% interest rate for a nominal fee. WHY CAN'T USAA DO THIS.
I'll tell you why - they are greedy and have a business model based on getting as much money from their customers as possible while at the same time telling them what a great service they provide. Fact is they couldn't care less about their customers and hang on stating vague technicalities as excuses to why they cannot help or re-work loans with their customers. They are unreasonable and unwilling to help their customers out and instead are quite content making as money as possible off of them. Stay away from USAA.
SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS -- I applied for a VA home loan from USAA thinking that they are friendly to soldiers, but find out the hard way that they are so horrible that I closed all my accounts with them and got me a new account with a local friendlier bank. They offered me an initial interest rate of 4.875 and while the rate is going down to 4.75, they called me and claimed that the interest rate went up to 5.2% and in order for me to keep this rate I will have to pay them $780 for discount points??? Discount???
The current rate is currently cheaper than what they originally quoted me and they are trying to scam $780 of hidden fees. Also they try to process the loan as slow as they can so that the contract and the lock-in of the interest rate expire, then they charge you fees to extend the lock, or they raise the interest rate on you. Also when you refuse their extremely expensive home insurance, and you shop for a cheaper and better insurance, they try to force you to buy insurance from them.
What happened to me was: I shopped around for home insurance and found a much better deal than what they offered me and it cost about the third of what they quoted me. I sent them the information to sign me up and finish the loan processing, but they waited until the day before the contract expire and then they called me and asked me to purchase insurance from them, they said we are still waiting for you to get home insurance. I replied by saying: I sent you guys the home insurance info a long time ago, what happened to that?
They first said, "We didn't get your message", and then they said, "Oh yeah we did get your message but the ins company didn't answer their phone (bla bla bla)." I took the matter in my own hands, called the insurance company and had them call USAA and fax the insurance binder to the same day. The ins company told me that USAA is used to that kind of behavior.
Another scam, is at closing, they don't give you the documents a day prior to you signing, following the regulations, they keep changing the closing documents until the last minutes, and add all kinds of unnecessary fees and charges, and they make sure that they absorb all your deposit money and meanest money. Basically at closing you will end up paying and not getting anything back as they promise you at the beginning: you will get your money back at closing don't worry about a thing, and guess what? You end up paying.
Lastly, don't fall for their Movers Advantage program, all it is, they have real estate agents working for them, they pay them commission, and in return the real estate agent will be working for them and not for you. they will add all kinds of fees to your closing cost to pay that agent their commission. They claim to give you cash back if you use the Movers Advantage program but in fact they will charge you double or more at closing.
Beware, be safe, bank with a bank who respect us and what we do for our country, and not with a scammer bank. If you need more details and advice on buying a home using a VA loan I will be happy to answer your questions and advise you, so you won't go through what I went through **. Peace.
CALIFORNIA -- I've ask myself on several occasions if some CSR with USAA have a personal grudge against me. Does a USAA CSR possibly know me and is purposely trying to make a life a living hell? I even gave USAA the benefit at one point, believing it's possible I could have make an online-mistake, but now I know better. USAA just did not want my business.
After being a "loyal" customer for over 10 years, I've chosen to cancel both my auto and renters insurance with this company because of their lack of integrity. My complaint is not complicated. It's simple. USAA attempted to deduct a premium out of my account (auto-pay) on a date my premium was not even due. To top this off, the amount of the premium was incorrect. USAA did not apologize for this incident, only stating it was not fault due to USAA (indicating me) and that I requested an auto payment of this amount to be taken out. OK.
So I was having trouble online one evening and immediately contacted a USAA CSR and told her I was having difficulties online. The USAA CSR assisted me, making me feel confident that the online problem I was having had been taken care of. One week later, USAA tried to deduct the funds from my account. Sure USAA did one thing right, they told me, as a "courtesy" they would remove their $15.00 fee for non-sufficient funds, but would not reimburse my bank fees. OK. So I took the bank fee loss.
After speaking to another USAA CSR I was assured a date and a premium amount would be deducted from my account a certain day (usually the same day monthly), lo and behold, they did it to me again. Stating my premium was due, this time on another date. WTF (excuse my language). I immediately contacted USAA AGAIN and ask why? what? how? when? I let them know this time I had proof!
I had proof with the date and amount that was due to be taken out. I had covered myself this time accordingly to USAA, NOT. What more did I need as proof?! I had printed the page from USAA's website with my premiums due date and amount. After feeling confident about having my so-called proof, a USAA CSR prompted me to another screen online with a new document. This document clearly stated a different due date from the one I had printed less than 3 weeks prior to USAA uploading this "new" document along with a new due date.
I did not receive an email from USAA stating I had a new document online to view. However, USAA did do the right thing again, - they waived the $15.00 fee from their end, stating it's a "courtesy" fee waiver again. How about my bank fee?! How about reimbursing me those fees!?
As far as I'm concerned, USAA didn't do me a "courtesy" by not charging me $15.00 on both occasions it clearly being fault of their own. I wish USAA would have showed some type of integrity they should have done what was right. I've chosen not to renew my auto insurance with USAA and cancelled my renters insurance as well. I'm starting to think maybe they'll be looking for a bailout by presenting statistics to Congress showing how this recession has caused them to lose customers/business.
This was not the case with me. USAA simply did not want my business anymore. They'll sure make it look good on paper since I was the one that cancelled. What did I have to do? Should I have continued to allow them to deduct premiums that weren't due? I don't think so. I know USAA just didn't want little old me as a customer. USAA is a company who'd "cook their books" at anyone's expense.
One way to guess that a company has bad customer service is when there is no way to contact them via email through their website. Live and learn. My adventure with USAA began when I Googled "Online Banks" about 6 weeks ago because I have moved three times in the last year and was tired of having to change all my banking. USAA was the 2nd on the list, so I opened a checking and savings account. My mom carries a USAA credit card and their website said members had to either be a vet or the child of a vet, which I am. I opened the accounts with no problem, after providing information on my mother including her social security number. I transferred money into each account from my existing account at another bank. The following week, after I had received my ATM card in the mail, I called to activate it and was told I could not activate it because I needed to fax in a photocopy of my drivers license and my soc sec card. I guess I was supposed to have ESP to know that, because I never got an email or a phone call to ask me to send that information. I faxed it the following day from a nearby office supplies store, since I haven't had a fax machine in years. Who the heck faxes anything anymore?
Then, for the next three weeks upon trying to logon to my accounts on the USAA site, I got a message "your account has been locked for security reasons. Call fraud . . ."and a phone number. Each time I called that number I was told "it just takes a few days," and I politely waited and tried again the next day. After 4 or 10 of these calls, I got pissed off and made the dimwit on the line dig to see what was holding things up. After 2 to 8 transfers, someone told me that they had not been able to read the fax image three weeks ago when the fax came in. Three weeks ago! And nobody bothered to tell me! So I demanded an email address to send the information instead of a fax and they said "sure you can email it." Recall that I was told initially that it had to be faxed. So I emailed it, and three days later was finally able to get onto the website. And guess what? It showed a balance of $00.00 in my accounts. So back on the phone, and was now told that my accounts had been closed and a check mailed to me because I was not eligible to have an account with USAA. After 3-7 transfers, I got a Executive Supervisor or something, who said that I was not eligible to have a USAA account because my mother had never purchased insurance from them. Are you still with me?
So, instead of their website informing me I wasn't eligible to open an account, it accepted all the information, appeared to open an account, then locked me out of my own money, gave me the runaround, and sent me my own money back, six weeks later (they told me the check was in the mail). I wonder how many people's money they hold on to like this? Sounds like a scam to me. Stay away from USAA. They are either crooks or completely incompetent. In either case, I'm relieved to be getting my money out. I think they should be investigated. Mike Wallace, where are you?
My then 17 year old son stuck my ("his") 2005 F-150 Crew cab 4x in a very deep puddle. He had to dive to connect a tow cable and the water was almost up to the door handles. It was in the water quite a while. The truck already had some body damage on it (right quarter dimple, some rear bumper, some front bumper) but was in good working condition when he drove it into this “puddle” that turned out to be much deeper and softer than it appeared. At the time of the incident he was estranged from me and staying with his mother, so he did not notify me and I discovered it just before sending him off to a wilderness program and boarding school.
The truck was not drivable after the dunking and he left it in a transmission shop. I put the truck in my repair shop and told them there was no hurry. Some time later, in talking to the shop, I became aware that I could file a claim for water damage with my insurer. I did so. By then the truck was in the body shop and that shop did not initiate repairs but awaited USAA's OK. That was about 6/20 and the truck is still in the body shop.
Initially USAA could possibly have refused coverage of the water damage due to my late reporting of the claim and their inability to see the truck before the major mechanical repairs were done (some remain to be done, but USAA isn't considering them and has closed the claim). They did not. They accepted my explanations and proceeded with (oddly extended) evaluation of the claim.
Mechanical repairs exceeded 7,000, and the truck has to go back for more. Body damage is over 5m. So I have well over 12,000 in damages. The body damage was not all in one incident, so application of multiple deductibles is fair. But much of the body damage resulted from efforts to get the truck out of the water. USAA broke the damage into four claims (based on?) and allotted no body damage to the water incident, which they are now calling “mechanical failure without collision.” Several times they have indicated to me, once in writing and several times in conversational slips, without calling me a liar, that they just do not believe the truck has water damage.
I filed the claim around 6/20, and on 8/4 USAA paid $2,229 on the body damage claims. Three payments, 979.01, 817.67, and 432.76. I am expecting some 200 on the water damage but haven't seen it and their site says only that the claim is complete. I imagine it has cost them more than the total paid to "manage" this claim! I have a 1,000 deductible and USAA is paying less than 2,500 total on this 12,000+ in damages.
The major failing is their refusal to recognize the water damage as such. At first they rejected the whole claim. Said there was "no claim" and "no flood damage." After I protested they found some 1,200 in water damage. So, 200 to me after the deductible. A token to placate me?
The repair shop told me it was all water damage, and they were sure some 4,500 of it couldn't be anything else. Some weeks into the very slow moving "investigation" USAA did call the shop, but the shop said didn't amount to much. They just read them the "customer complaint" from my work ticket, and USAA "asked no questions."
I don't know what the complaint said, probably that the truck been drowned and the transmission was out. That's all I knew at the time. The original estimate was 4,000 - it's clearly the sort of damage that isn't all evident until digging into the mechanicals.
We had faxed USAA the detailed invoice, prepared without reference to insurance and not for that purpose, but mentioning “will have problems with modules and relays, water was under the dash,” and “signal flasher full of water.” I asked the shop who there would have firsthand knowledge of the water damage, and they said "we all saw it." The owner volunteered to talk to them. The shop is highly respected and if USAA has any local agents they know it.
I kept asking USAA to talk to the repair shop, and to go look at the truck - pull a door panel and look for a water line, as suggested by my shop, something like that - and eventually a supervisor of my initial contact said he would talk to [the owner]. They did eventually talk and [the owner] told me he explained for about 20 minutes, item by item, what was water damage and why, that there was water in the transmission, the seals were out, the bearings rusty, water in the differential, etc. etc.
But [he] said that at the end of his extended explanation he felt his time had been wasted because [the supervisor] just said words to the effect of, “Well, we've already decided and told Mr. ** what we're doing, and we're sticking to that.” No rebuttal, no questions.
I asked [the supervisor] to refer the matter upstairs for me, and he reported back that he'd done so and the answer was no change. The supervisor] and I seem to relate well, and I have no reason not to believe the matter was reviewed, but anyone would have to notice that it is procedurally strange that I never heard anything direct from anyone else.
I've been with USAA auto insurance for at least 23 years - seems like longer but I don't have records back that far. And I don't recall a single major claim. This last year I paid some 5,000 to them, up from 2,500 apparently just on account of my teenage son being on the policy. You can't say he isn't fully rated. Now I have a claim of over 12,000 on account of him - and I get tons of trouble and not even get as much total payment as the policy increase. The only justification for their position on the water damage is that they do not believe there was water damage. But that is simply contrary to the evidence and the facts.
Top reasons why I will never switch from USAA to Progressive:
Clientele: while driving down the highway I was struck from the rear by an inebriated unemployed Progressive driver, who was already on probation for DUI. It feels good to ensure others who would be court-martialed if they behaved like this individual.
Clarity: when I call USAA I don't have to be transferred from a National Office to a local office, and since I don't need to be transferred I don't get two different stories about the service they provide. When I call Progressive the national office tells me that they will go wherever I need, service and inspect the car wherever I like and generally accommodate me, but when I call the local office I am told I must go to their body shop during working hours have my car checked out. When I call the national office and ask to speak to someone higher up, they route me to another claims adjuster in the same department who also cannot help. No bureaucracy, that's why I love USAA.
Availability: when I call USAA I am told we will be here all night to help you. My Progressive claims adjuster works only four days per week.
Attitude: when I speak to USAA about my accident they can't wait to genuinely show concern and look out for my welfare. When I can get a hold of anyone at Progressive I get terse responses and feigned concern. When I come to the Progressive office, the claims adjuster tells the secretary to take my paperwork and lets the secretary try to determine what is happening with my case because she is too busy to see me (though she saw doing a deliberate about face upon seeing me and calls the secretary twice to see if I have gone away yet). When she does come to see me she tells me "You just don't know how the insurance business works." Clearly, I don't know how Progressive works, but I know how USAA does, I am treated with respect, concern, and prompt service.
Responsibility: When I take the day off work to personally fetch police reports, contact sheriff's departments, rental car companies and bring needed documentation to the office, but am still told that Progressive does not have the documentation to repair my car and that I should contact my insurance company because they can work faster. USAA bends over backward to cover everything, pay out the claim and get my car into the shop though it was no fault of theirs; it consumes their time and resources and involves them unnecessarily.
Understanding and Timeliness: USAA understands when I tell them I am leaving at 5 AM for predeployment certification training for two weeks and that I will not be able to contact them for two weeks. USAA apologizes for the service that Progressive has provided and stresses that they understand that it is not acceptable to leave my wife without transportation. The Progressive claims adjuster tells me after an exterior examination of my car that it is not their fault that I am leaving, that the brake light on my dash must have been on before the accident and that my car should be drivable for my wife. Progressive also suggests that I should use my predeployment leave to fix the car.
In a word USAA understands service.
MASSACHUSETTS -- I had a cracked windshield. All of my previous insurance companies had a $50 deductible for windshield only claims. I called the USAA line which connects you to Safelite. They quoted me $494 and informed me that USAA covers windshields under the comprehensive, so I would be responsible for $250 (my deductible) of the bill. I have never had a windshield deductible over $50, so I was really taken aback.
At any rate, I have had multiple windshields replaced in the past and thought almost $500 sounded a bit high. So I went to the Safelite website directly and put in the information without USAA. They quoted me $314.95. That a $159 discount to NOT use insurance. Plus, then I don't have the claim.
But, wait! There's more!!! I went to the USAA site to double check my coverage and found that they never took off the car that I had a total loss on 2.5 months ago, So, I have been paying insurance on it this whole time. The representative I just spoke to took it off and backdated it, but...
It gets better. After she correctly removed the totaled car, I noticed that the old work truck I had listed as "in storage" was still on the policy. That was my fault. I forgot to call when I sold it. However, I had her remove the truck also and my policy then WENT UP by $60. I asked why that was, and she said it was because by taking off the car and truck I lost my multicar discount. Keep in mind that I still have TWO cars insured by USAA.
The problem (she says) is that one is registered in TN and one in MA, so USAA puts them on TWO DIFFERENT POLICIES. I reminded her that USAA serves military personnel who often have cars registered in multiple states, but she said there was nothing she could do about it. She offered to let me speak to a manager. I waited on hold a while and she came back to tell me they would have to call me back tomorrow.
It isn't tomorrow yet, so I am waiting for the call. However, since it is company policy, I doubt there is anything they can do about it. I am going to be looking for a new insurance provider - but not before I tell my many, many fellow military friends and family that USAA is now just one of the many companies that targets, rather than helps, military families.
SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS -- I have been with USAA since I was 17 and had signed up to be in the USAF. At first, before actually going to BMT, the bank was very good. I never had any problems until I hit check school. The first time money went missing from my account was in February 2011 for $100. I had just gotten paid that day and transferred $100 from checkings to savings. That money mysteriously was withdrawn the next day.
When I called the lady I talked to at first said it was a computer error but after talking with her manager, claimed that the money was never there and went as far as to call me a liar over the phone. She flat out refused to let me talk to her boss and ended the call by saying "Ma'am, the monies is not there. You never had the monies." and hung up. The second time, $40 went missing. USAA claimed it was for an overdraft payment. Since none of my accounts were in the negative or never had they been, the money was returned after much arguing and deliberating.
The third time, they took $50 out for a "bad check" on an account that no checks were ever deposited to. After looking through all the transaction history and seeing that there were no check deposits, he claimed my husband, who doesn't know the account number or even have a card for said account, took out a credit and he could not give me further information.
When my husband called, they said the same thing, that a credit had been taken out but that I had done it. When he gave the phone to me to talk to the rep, he said that he couldn't help us and hung up the phone. USAA used to be really great but have seemed sketchy ever since 2011, for me personally.
SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS -- My husband and I are both Active Duty and have been USAA members for 14 years. We have bought several vehicles using USAA for our financing, bought our house, have a credit card, all of our insurance, etc. In the last 5 years or so we have noticed a severe decline in quality of service that we receive from USAA. The final straw was this week when we were "pre-approved" for a car loan up to 50K (yikes) at 4.25%. I had been thinking about trading in my vehicle for something a little smaller with better mileage.
Needless to say, I did NOT need 50K, and was dumbfounded when we accepted the offer and were given terms that not only did not reflect our good credit rating but were completely ridiculous. The interest rate was 12.99%! My husband negotiated with them for over 2 hours and finally were given an offer of 4.99%. We figured that was a fairly decent rate, and off to the dealership we went. After spending a couple of hours negotiating trade in and purchase price, we were finalizing the paperwork.
Mr. Finance Guy called USAA to verify the approval on the electronic loan check, and here's where it gets really good. Apparently, USAA never intended to do this car loan because the final approval amount on the electronic check was a full 5000.00 UNDER MSRP for the vehicle! In simple terms, there was no way we were going to buy this car with USAA because they never intended to give us the amount we would need to finance it! There is a happy ending though. We applied for financing through Toyota, and were given not only an instant approval, BUT!!! Get this!!! We were given a final interest rate of 4.19%.
Moral of the story: USAA has contracted out so many of their services and on any given day you can get a nice heaping helping of crappy attitude when you call to talk to a customer service representative. Needless to say, we have started shopping for new insurance, looking into a credit union for banking services, and are working to pay off the credit card we hold with USAA. We certainly won't be recommending them to anyone anymore either.