Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health insuran...

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Chris Harrigan has an economic degree from Limestone College and an MBA from Clemson University. He previously managed auto insurance claims for Enterprise Rent-A-Car. Currently, he is using his business and insurance expertise to provide insurance data analysis and visualizations to enhance the user experience.

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Reviewed by Chris Harrigan
Former Auto Insurance Claims Manager Chris Harrigan

UPDATED: Aug 6, 2021

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Key Takeaways

  • The Auto Owners Insurance company was founded over 90 years ago and has been a Fortune 500 company for almost a decade with over 37,000 independent agents in 26 states
  • To keep it simple, an independent agency is usually a smaller firm locally owned and operated by licensed insurance professionals who sell a particular firms product
  • The company operates under a large system of independent agents nationwide offering a wide range of insurance products such as auto, life and home insurance

The Auto Owners Insurance company was founded over 90 years ago and has been a Fortune 500 company for almost a decade with over 37,000 independent agents in 26 states.

The company operates under a large system of independent agents nationwide offering a wide range of insurance products such as auto, life, and home insurance.

In 2010 the number of independent agents offering Auto Owners Car Insurance products exceeds 37,000 agents. It’s based largely on paperless billing with features like student discounts and multi-policy discounts for affordable annual premiums for many drivers. Like other insurers, the Auto Owners Insurance Company offers basic liability and a range of optional coverage options so you can customize your plan.

Considering the company advertises a “No Problem” claims service and believes personal contact is the best to handle a claim its refreshing to see this number of agents.

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What is an independent insurance agency?

To keep it simple, an independent agency is usually a smaller firm locally owned and operated by licensed insurance professionals who offer a range of insurance plans. Generally, they have partnerships with a few and have connections to others as needed. There are also captive agents who only sell policies for one company. So they can only get you quotes from one competitor. While you may like companies like State Farm or Allstate, this generally isn’t in the best interest of the customer.

Unfortunately, one company often doesn’t offer the best coverage or rates. If you’re working with a captive agent, there’s no way to tell unless you go out and seek out other quotes.

Some coverages have become more common such as roadside assistance for a flat tire or collision deductible elimination have become increasingly popular. Many drivers also want coverages that will eliminate additional expenses for a small fee each renewal.  Auto Owners Insurance follows these trends to offer the options customers want.

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Does Auto Owners Insurance Have Downsides?

Auto Owners Insurance has two major downfalls. One is its geographic footprint. The Auto Owners car insurance company currently only provides coverage for drivers in 26 states. So if you live in an Auto Owners state and move, you may be forced to switch insurance carriers. You may also miss out on a wide variety of coverages available in other states. You have to consider things like:

  • the possible loss of multi-policy discounts since Auto Owners may not be able to insure assets located outside of the coverage area
  • the headache of switching car insurance companies again if you move

The other downfall is online access. Auto Owners insurance prefers the personal touch which is quite commendable. However we are also in a time when online account management tools allowing policyholders to make payments, print car insurance ID cars and handle claims is expected. Many people are busy, and they don’t want to call customer service or their insurance agent every time they need something.

The lack of this fairly simple technology will turn many would be policyholders away.

Are Auto Owners car insurance rates fair?

Auto Owners insurance is a Fortune 500 company mainly due to their auto insurance policy portfolio. So the company is extremely competitive. However, every driver has unique needs so you need to compare car insurance companies to get the best rates.

Much like all car insurance companies the Auto Owners company has auto insurance discount programs for customers with multiple policies, vehicle safety features, and most of the more common car insurance discounts available in the marketplace.

What Else Should You Know about Auto-Owners Insurance?

Auto-Owners Insurance encompasses a wide range of automobile insurance from standard packages to comprehensive coverage.

The policies that are available in your state will vary depending on which local independent agencies are representing Auto-Owners Insurance.

In general, you can obtain multiple automobile policies, anti-theft devices, and coverage for vehicles that you do not own.

They also have offices specifically designed to handle customer claims in 75 US cities.

In addition to the local offices, Auto-Owners Insurance also contracts over 35,000 independent insurance agents to help handle customer claims and inquiries.

Because the insurance sold through the company is handled by independent agencies it is not possible to receive a quote online.

Once you have become a customer, you will not be able to manage your account, pay for your policy, or change coverage plans online.

If you need to make any changes or cancel your coverage you will need to contact an independent agent.

The search for car insurance should always start online. We can help connect you with local car insurance companies if you use our FREE quote tool to compare auto insurance rates today!