Consumer Protection Law

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I am having an issue with my car insurance carrier and feel…

Customer Question
I am having an...

I am having an issue with my car insurance carrier and feel that a cancelled policy happened without proper notice for me.

Lawyer's Assistant: What state is this in? And how old is the car?

Oregon. 1997

Lawyer's Assistant: Has anything been filed or reported?

So what happened is that I contacted my insurance company and told them that on September 15th, I would not be able to pay my insurance through the bank account because I had some fraud issues and the bank account was on hold. I asked to postpone the payment and they said it was too late to do that but they would attempt it three times and if it didn't go through they would let me know and I could pay it online. I agreed and waited. In October, I saw my bank account debited for one auto policy but not the other and I wait a couple days and went online to check. My policy that did not go through in September had a cost of $421.00 due on October 30th. I paid this amount in full on Oct 28th (the day I looked and saw it) and thought that was enough. My car was in an accident on November 3rd and when I called them to file the claim they said the policy was cancelled for non payment because my 421 was only to pay the policy current and I didn't call them to renew. I didn't know I had to. I have had them 10 years. They never called me once and said they sent a letter but I never received it???

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

No, that's the whole story. Bad customer service and now an expensive repair.

Submitted: 7 months ago.Category: Consumer Protection Law
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Answered in 17 hours by:
12/6/2017
Consumer Protection Lawyer: TJ, Esq., Attorney replied 7 months ago
TJ, Esq.
TJ, Esq., Attorney
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 12,765
Experience: JD, MBA
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Hello and thank you for the opportunity to assist you. My name is ***** ***** I will do my very best to answer your legal questions.

Unfortunately, if they sent a letter, then that is generally sufficient notice. In other words, the requirement is that notice be mailed, not that notice be received. If receipt of the notice was required, then everything would have to be sent certified mail with a signature required, and people could avoid various responsibilities by ignoring the mailman when he knocks. Moreover, you are responsible for knowing when your policy expires, and taking action to renew it.

However, if your policy has automatically renewed in the past, then you certainly have an argument that you should be covered on November 3rd because your insurance company and you have an established practice regrading renewal, and they cannot deviate from that practice without providing notice of that change. So you can argue that they should have mailed you written notice that your policy would not be automatically renewed, and that is in addition to the notice that your policy would expire (which they purportedly mailed to you).

If I were in your shoes, I would file a complaint with Oregon's Division of Financial Regulation, which regulates insurance in Oregon. You can file a complaint by following the instructions here: http://dfr.oregon.gov/gethelp/Pages/file-a-complaint.aspx

The insurance company will be contacted, and it's possible that this dispute can be worked out. If not, then you have the option of suing the insurance company (though you'll need to weigh the cost of that versus the cost of simply paying for the accident yourself, and then switching to a new insurance company with better customer service).

Does that answer your question(s)? Please let me know if you need clarification, as I am happy to continue helping you until you are satisfied. Also, please remember to provide a positive rating via the stars (and note that your positive rating is the only way that I'll get credit for helping you, so it is much appreciated!). Thank you. :)

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Consumer Protection Lawyer: TJ, Esq., Attorney replied 7 months ago

Hello again. I didn't hear back from you, and you haven't yet rated me, so I'm just checking in to make sure that you don't need more help on this issue.

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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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