CLAUDINE HELLMUTH
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Monday, August 06, 2007
exhausting day
toby_sleepyI am so worn out after today. Started off super early this morning at 7am getting my car towed to the VW dealer. It went fine and of course I left a million notes all around it so they would know whose it was when it got there.

Then later I hear back from them and it's not just the battery, the Ignition Switch and the ECM (the car's computer) are ALSO broken. Ugh! the guy tells me it would be about $2,000 to fix it! Yipes! Then I remembered that I had bought a Geico extra warranty, when I purchased the car. So I called them and luckily it hadn't run out yet, it was for 8 years and my car is 7 years old. So yay! Now all I have to pay is the deductible and the battery. Still expensive but much cheaper than paying for the whole thing! yay!!

After all that, I started on my journey of getting this homeowners insurance thing sorted out. I still don't understand how a company can just start a policy without your consent or needing to sign something. You'd think you'd have to sign something! When I got our insurance with Tower Hill after Allstate dropped us, Paul and I had to sign so many papers you'd have thought we were getting a mortgage! So it seems so weird that Allstate can auto-enroll us with Royal Palm without us needing to sign forms to consent.

I called Allstate and they tell me to call Royal Palm, then I call Royal Palm and they tell me to call Allstate! arrrrugh!! Finally I called my lender and told them if Royal Palm tries to get added to my escrow to deny them. Hopefully that might work. I will try again tomorrow, this is a phone call nightmare, I wonder if I will ever get it sorted out.

My parents had the same thing with Royal Palm when Allstate dropped them, but since they don't escrow their insurance, it was easier to resolve. Not as easy for us since they have all our lender information. What a nightmare! Tomorrow I will do battle again!

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COMMENTS:
It's actually quite easy for an insurance agency to sell off your policy without your direct consent. In all of those papers that you had to originally sign, there was perhaps in extra super fine print a clause in it that allowed them to sell it off. You may not have actually received it in the original contract, but as a follow-up notice of terms of service change. Many companies will put a clause in the contract that will allow them to amend and change their terms of service at anytime. Thusly, it gives them lots of wiggle room as far as to what they can do.

Make sure that the next time you sign such an agreement you keep an eye out for a sole agreement or binding agreement clause. Knowing about this little detail can save you tons in the end. What this basically does is make sure that there is no way that the contract can be disputed or changed without having the changes put in writing that must be signed off on by both parties.
 
Make sure to read over all the paperwork very closely, because if you don't go through the appropriate channels, Royal Palms could actually sue you for breach of contract. Insurance companies are particularly good at sneaking in penalties... so watch out!

I'm sure everything will work out though.
 
Oh, here's another helpful hint: Check for a "Customer's Bill of Rights." This can be helpful if you have to argue with them. These will sometimes inform you of certain protections built in to contracts against the company taking advantage of you.

And out of principle, you should file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau after it's all settled. If Royal Palms tries to get sassy with you, let them know that you'll be doing this.

OH! And make sure to get the name of EVERYONE you speak with and their badge number if they have one.
 
oh poor you....:( That is awful...here I am with nothing productive to say, all I want to do is talk about how cute that dog is
 
No wonder you have a migraine!
 
what a pain! i hope you are able to get it all sorted out!
 
What a terrible no good very bad day!
 
Isn't that Geico policy a great idea! I had that years ago and used it when my transmission went out on my car! I was very thankful for it. I hope things go better for you!
 
Ugh, we've had homeowners woes for the past 2 years. First Tower Hill (your company) dropped us (no reason, haven't filed a claim in 8 years) so we went with Farm Bureau. Their insurance went up 40%, so we had to go shopping again this year. I can sympathize - hope it all gets worked out without too much hassle!
 
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