Pssst! I want to let you in on a big secret in the insurance industry. It’s a common misconception that finding affordable insurance to suit your unique needs is a tough process. The secret that most carriers and agents don’t want you to know is this: it is surprisingly simple to find the best company for you! I’ve started a series of reviews to help you in your research. If you have any questions, leave them in the comments below or give me a call today!
- Editor Rating
- Rated 2.5 stars
- The General Insurance
- Reviewed by:
- Published on:
- Last modified:
- Customer ServiceEditor: 69%
- Claims ServiceEditor: 63%
- Annual PriceEditor: 86%
- Coverage OptionsEditor: 75%
|Company Name:||PERMANENT GENERAL ASSURANCE CORPORATION|
|Address:||2636 ELM HILL PIKE, #510
NASHVILLE, TN 37214
|California Company ID #:||2979-3|
|Date Authorized in California:||09/19/1984|
|Company Type:||Property & Casualty|
|State of Domicile:||OHIO|
The General: Company History
In 1963, Permanent General Agency began selling insurance, later changing its name to Permanent General Assurance Corporation. The General, as we know it today, did not come about until 2012, when Permanent General and its affiliates were unified under one brand name.
That same year, American Family Insurance acquired the company. They still own The General; however, it operates as a separate brand, specializing in insuring those drivers who are considered “high risk” and who generally face more expensive premiums as a result of this classification.
The company is headquartered out of Nashville, TN, and is known for its convenient quote tool, which allows drivers to quickly and anonymously receive automobile insurance quotes. The company is also known for its commercials; its snappy animated advertisements earned it three Telly awards in 2012.
The General also offers renters insurance and life insurance; however, these are generally offered through its parent company, American Family Insurance.
The General: Pros and Cons
If you are a driver with poor credit, a spotty driving record or a history of suspended/revoked license, The General really shines. The company provides anonymous quotes and also provides SR-22 forms.
An SR-22 is also known as a Statement of Responsibility, which is required by some states for drivers to prove that they have sufficient insurance coverage. This form allows drivers to retain driving privileges after serious traffic- related offenses, like driving without insurance in an at-fault accident.
While these are all pros for those with a less-than-stellar driving record, there are a few downsides to using The General.
|Competitive Pricing||Customer Service Below Average|
|Accept Drivers With Foreign Licenses||Claims Service Below Average|
|Great Rates for High Risk Drivers||Coverage Options Limited|
For one thing, The General’s primary focus is auto insurance, so for those looking for a one-stop-shop or those looking to bundle all of their policies, this company might not be the right choice.
Additionally, the policy options and coverage offered by The General are pretty standard, meaning you mostly likely won’t have as many customizable options as you would with other insurers.
The company’s website and application also offer a mix of pros and cons: it allows policyholders to manage their accounts; however, the site does not include personalized coverage tips.
One thing to note is that any quote through The General will reflect the minimum level of car insurance that is legally required to drive in your state. Typically, this only includes liability insurance. This is important to keep in mind, because your state might require additional coverage.
Speaking of coverage: another downside to The General is that you will have to get a quote in order to find out more information on optional coverages.
Discounts and Deals
The General is competitively priced for the type of insurance it offers.
Generally speaking, any insurance with the term “high risk” in front of it will be more expensive than insurance for those who are not high risk. High risk means that the risk a carrier takes on by covering you is greater than the risk of covering an average individual. Certain hobbies, lifestyle choices, financial choices and health problems might make a candidate high risk.
This is just one reason why coverage through this company might not be the best option for you, depending on your driving history.
|Discount Description||Discount Amount|
|Low Annual Mileage Driven||2% - 36.5%|
|Mature Driver Course||5%|
|Multi–Policy||20% - 25%|
If you have paid six-to-twelve months of premiums in full, you may be eligible for a policy discount. Additionally, some states may discount you for paying your premiums in quarterly, rather than monthly, installments.
Depending on a few factors – such as your zip code, driving record and type of vehicle – The General offers customers the option to buy an auto policy with a $59 down payment. Be sure to check the guidelines for your state in order to get an estimate of how much coverage would cost in your state.
The General Complaint Information
The General sells automobile insurance from three insurers: Permanent General Assurance Corporation, The General Automobile Insurance Company and Permanent General Assurance Corporation of Ohio.
Each of these companies was rated A- (excellent) through A.M. Best. Unfortunately, all of these companies also received high levels of consumer complaints in 2015.
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners gathers complaint ratios, which show how many complaints a company receives compared to its market shares. The median of the industry is 1, with higher ratings indicating more complaints.
to be without Merit.
The ratios for the General’s compilation of insurers is:
- Permanent General Assurance Corporation: 4.4
- The General Automobile: 1.54
- Permanent General Assurance Corporation of Ohio: 1.48
Complaints for these companies generally involve slow or delayed claim payments, poor settlement offers and claim denials.
As with most insurance companies, these complaints should be looked at one a case-by-case basis, and should not solely be used to determine if a company would be a good fit for your insurance needs.
How Does The General Compare to Other Insurance Companies?
See how The General compares to other top insurance providers in California:
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One thing I have learned in my years of industry experience is that you should never choose a company solely based on the fact that you might be a high risk candidate.
For automobile insurance, particularly, you may not understand the risk that you pose. I see a lot of clients who have been in one or two fender-benders in the past and think that means they can’t find affordable premiums.
Typically, even if you are high risk, you have several coverage options available to you. Finding the right carrier is simply a matter of comparing prices and policy options. This is where an experienced agent comes in handy.
Before you choose a high risk carrier like The General, reach out and give me a call so I can help you explore the options that may be available to you.
Foreign License Drivers
High Risk Drivers
The General Insurance
Summary: If you are a driver with poor credit, a spotty driving record or a history of suspended/revoked license, The General really shines. The company provides anonymous quotes and also provides SR-22 forms.