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Pekin Insurance Review

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UPDATED: Mar 18, 2020

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Pekin Insurance is an Illinois-based insurer that offers a wide range of products, both personal and commercial. Pekin operates as a group of four companies, providing varied coverage in a number of states.

About Pekin Insurance

Pekin has a backstory similar to a lot of other insurance companies; it was started in 1921 by a group of farmers to provide an affordable option for car insurance. Members of the Tazewell County Farm Bureau formed The Farmers Automobile Insurance Association – not related to the well-known Farmers Insurance Group – and began offering policies to locals.

The company started offering 25-hour claim services in 1932, and the company grew rapidly, with 30,000 policies in force by 1945. In 1952 they added fire insurance and continued to add new lines of business over the following decades. The Pekin Life Insurance Company was created in 1965 to write a variety of life insurance policies.

Today they offer a full line of personal and business insurance policies in six states, with a limited selection of products available in nine other states. Pekin’s headquarters remains in its namesake city of Pekin, Illinois, with eight regional claims offices in other states. Policies are sold through independent agents.

Pekin Products

Peking writes all of the big three policies in personal insurance – home insurance, auto insurance, and life insurance – as well as several specialty policies. They also write business insurance and offer employee benefits.

Auto Insurance

Pekin’s auto insurance program covers all the basics, along with several optional coverage enhancements available to customize the policy. These include:

  • Roadside Assistance
  • Rental Reimbursement
  • Accidental Death Benefit
  • $0 deductible for glass claims
  • New car replacement
  • Coverage for sound receiving and transmission equipment
  • Auto/Loan Lease coverage
  • Young Adult Protection Plus (a package endorsement aimed at young adults)

The Auto Guard Endorsement is a package endorsement that includes a wide variety of options in one. This package comes with:

  • Extended rental car coverage
  • Accidental Airbag Deployment
  • Additional Towing and Labor
  • Trip Interruption protection
  • Personal Effects coverage
  • Key Replacement
  • Fire Department charges
  • Pet Coverage
  • Tire Protection
  • Waiver of Deductible

Pekin has a good list of discounts available for their car insurance policies, including common ones like multi-car, good student, and anti-theft devices. Discounts are also offered for longevity with the company and for hybrid vehicles.

Pekin also has a high-risk auto program called Crossroads designed for drivers with difficult driving records.

In addition to auto insurance, Pekin offers coverage for motorcycles, boats, and ATVs.

Home Insurance

Pekin’s home insurance policy covers all the house and other structures, personal property, and liability as well as loss of use coverage. Coverage endorsements can be added to build on the basic policy.

Both extended replacement cost coverage for the dwelling and replacement cost coverage for personal property can be added to the base policy. Additional coverage enhancements are:

  • Identity Theft
  • Equipment Breakdown
  • Earthquake
  • Refrigerated Property
  • Scheduled Personal Property for high-value items
  • Pet Health Insurance
  • Water and Sewer Backup

Discounts on home policies include protective devices, new roof discounts, and mature homeowner among others.

Pekin writes coverage for single family homes as well as condos and mobile homes. They also have a renter’s insurance policy.

Life Insurance

Pekin has a wide range of life insurance policies available, both whole life insurance and term life insurance. The website does not give much detail on the policies, but lists all of the available options:

  • Universal Life Insurance
  • Term Life with 10, 15, 20, or 30-year term lengths
  • Preferred Whole Life with a variety of payment options including single premium and Paid Up at 65
  • Simplified Issue Whole Life, which can be issued without the need for medical exams, but has a lower death benefit and limited benefits in the first two years.
  • Graded Death Benefit Whole Life
  • Transitional Life, which transitions from a higher death benefit policy to a lower, permanent amount of coverage
  • Funeral Pre-planning
  • Credit Insurance and Debt Protection

In addition to these options, Pekin has several other financial planning products including annuities.

Medicare Supplement

Pekin offers Medicare Supplement insurance coverage in all of the states where they are licensed. Plans vary by state and follow the standards of the state. Most states use the letter-coded system, with a few exceptions.

Business Insurance

Pekin writes a la carte coverage and Business Owners package policies mainly for small businesses. They have coverage for many different business types and can customize a package to include things like business auto and workers compensation.

In addition to covering businesses, Pekin also writes employee benefits packages. These can be employer-paid or employee-paid voluntary benefits. Options include short-term disability and group life.

Rates

Pekin does not offer any online quoting, and rates are only available by speaking with a local agent. The site provides an agent locator that can put visitors in touch with a local agent.

Companies like Pekin do not usually compete on rates with big direct-buy insurance companies, but often make up for somewhat higher rates in the customer service department.

Claims

Pekin has a toll-free 24/7 claims line that can be used for just about any of their products, with the exception of life insurance claims. Online claim filing is also available for home and auto, auto glass claims, and credit insurance and debt protection.

Health claims for Medicare supplement or employee benefits health plans are filed through a different system.

The site does not provide any information on how claims are handled or what to expect. For a company of this size, we expect to see a somewhat more robust claims section that provides some information at the very least.

Ratings and Consumer Reviews

Pekin Insurance has been accredited with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 1949, and currently has an A+ rating. There are 15 complaints on file in the past three years. There are 13 reviews that add up to a two out of five-star rating.

The reviews include some very positive comments as well as some complaints about customer service and claims issues.

We found eight reviews on Yelp, all of which are negative. They cite denial of claims and slow service.

The overall number of complaints for this company is low considering its size. We did not find any red flags or major issues of concern.

The Bottom Line

Pekin has a very good range of products for a regional company, and should be able to meet the needs of most individuals. Without rates, we cannot speak to their value, but they might be a good choice for anyone that prefers a smaller company and the assistance of a local agent. They are also a good pick for those in search of high-risk auto insurance coverage.

For a list of companies that we recommend, visit our Best Insurance Companies page.

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Review Information

Summary
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Pekin Insurance
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About Eric Stauffer

Author: Eric StaufferI am a former insurance agent and banker turned consumer advocate. My priority is to help educate individuals and families about the different types of insurance they need, and assist them in finding the best place to get it.

37 Comments

  1. Do not use this company!

    Will ALWAYS quote you under your deductible so they do not have to pay!

    They will not return phone calls !! Adjusters not honest!!!!!

    Have had this company for 19 years and now that almost half my roof has been blown off due to weather they don’t want to pay anything!

    Reply
  2. Terrible company. Pekin has been fraudulently billing me for workers comp after cancelation for 6 months now.

    The audit was complete months ago but the auto withdrawal continues. I’m also receiving bills for my new policy along with the old one I canceled.

    On top of this, they can’t seem to send me bills for a different company and only send me the cancelation notices every other month.

    They don’t receive checks properly and have trouble changing my address to the current one. A completely s@#$ company run by idiots.

    I have never hated a company like this before. They fill my mailbox with crap mailings about 2-3 times a week.

    If I kept all of their mail I could fill a small car with it.

    Reply
  3. I have been sorting through a lot of the negative comments about Pekin Insurance Co. I am an independent agent who has represented many companies through my 40 plus years of selling insurance. The one thing I have noticed in about all of the negative comments is that the insured seemed to be dealing exclusively with the company on all of these problems, whether billing, coverage or claim related issues. I did not see hardly any examples where the agent of the disgruntled customer was involved. All companies have similar problems, but I can assure you that if you do not have an agent who is willing to get involved to make sure your issues are taken care of then your company or policy is only as good as your agent. I have represented Pekin for over 20 years and can honestly say they are one of the best companies I have ever represented.

    Reply
    • Sorry, Bill, I respect your loyalty to Pekin but I’ve been buying insurance as long as you’ve been an agent and I’ve never been treated worse than I was by Pekin. BTW since switching to Geico, I’ve not had any problems.

      Reply
    • We have been trying to get a credit disability claim processed since October 2018 (5 months now). They didn’t include a form in the packet they sent us, I asked them to fax the form to our doctor, which I had to get them to do it 3 times. On the third request, they informed me that they normally don’t do this and it was a courtesy to us. Well, thank you, if you would have sent the form, in the beginning, this wouldn’t be an issue. Since my doctor wasn’t getting the fax, I asked what number they were faxing to. The number they stated was a Missouri area code, we are in Cedar Rapids Iowa and none of the digits they repeated to me even came close to matching. Our doctor faxed his form back to them (2 weeks ago) and today they said “we haven’t received it”, even though we watched it getting faxed. They then became argumentative that they don’t have their fax number on the forms (which they do and highlighted) and yet the doctor faxed them to the same number they verbally gave me over the phone. They either don’t know what their forms do or don’t have on them or don’t care and would rather become argumentative with their clients. I would NOT recommend them for ANY products.

      Reply
    • Well, Bill, I think your point of view will differ from the rest of us. As long as Pekin is screwing all of us, there will be money to pay agents. Sooner or later this piddly little company will run out of people to screw over.
      (Contractors Beware )
      Kevin G.

      Reply
  4. Attention Contractors. I had Pekin business insurance for several years. I was dropped with zero claims. I did a few service calls out of state, and was honest with the auditor, and was dropped. They did business in both states I was in. They will take your money for a while, then drop you with policy changes. I have since found other insurance for all states and Mexico for less money. Insurance shopping is no fun. Don’t waste your time with this piddly little company. There are a lot better companies out there. Had I read their reviews before I signed up, I would have saved a lot of time and money.

    Reply
  5. I have been with Pekin for 24 years. They have always been good to me until now. I received a letter which I miss interpreted that because of the age of my roof, if there was any storm damage, it would not be covered. I had gone to my agent to pay my Umbrella policy and asked them to see why my premiums were so high. One of the agents took my name and number down and said she would get back with me. Well, we had a terrible hail storm a few weeks ago and we had damage. Thinking that our insurance would not cover the claim, I had the roof fixed. I took the photos in to have my policy adjusted so they knew I had a new roof. Then the agent told me that my roof would have been covered but not for full replacement. I asked them to file a claim. The old roof, gutters, facia, etc. are still in the dumpster in my driveway. The adjuster called to set an appointment. When I told her that the roof had already been replaced she said that I cannot make a claim now. I have a local contractor stating that yes there was damage from the storm, I have the evidence of the damage, (shingles, old facia, old gutters) but now will not be reimbursed any since I misunderstood a letter that was received and the agent did not get back with me on my premium questions. Dummy me I guess.

    Reply
  6. My daughter was in an accident in which the other driver was at fault. The other driver had Pekin as well. The adjuster low-balled us on every offer he made us. He lied to us as much as he could get away with. His only job was to get us to settle for the least amount as possible, at our expense without regard to my daughter’s health. I didn’t realize that at the very moment you have an accident in which the other person is at fault and they have the same insurance company as you, you might as well not have insurance. You have no representation at all. Especially with Pekin. they have not paid the medical bills, the ambulance or any of our expenses involved. Financially we have not been returned to an acceptable position.

    Reply
  7. We have everything with Pekin and been with them for years. House, boat and 3 cars with a teen driver. Best rates for us. 2 claims, and had payment in a week.

    Reply
    • CS
      Very happy for you. The odds are good that with such poor service for so many that they will get one right once in a while. Even a broken watch is right twice a day.

      Reply
  8. Pekin has to be the worst company I have ever had the displeasure of using for insurance. My wife and I have been with this deplorable company for 3 weeks. We gave them a voided check to start our policy with them, as agreed upon with our Representative ( [Redacted], I believe his name is) and they would take the money out of our account. Now they are saying we gave them a blank check AND that the check came back to them from insufficient funds and want us to pay for the entire year. I wish I would have read the reviews about this company before we signed up with them, they are nothing but a bunch of shysters. If anyone is thinking of using this company for their insurance company, please, I beg you to look for another company. They do not care about their clients like they claim. I will be putting in a claim with the BBB about this company.

    Reply
    • To be honest I am truly happy that I had this horrible experience with this crappy rip-off Democratic [redacted] company. Pekin Insurance is a bunch of [redacted] and not worth your time!!! I am now insured through Progressive insurance company and I would recommend EVERYONE to go to Progressive insurance for ALL their insurance needs

      Reply
    • What’s really a joke is that they have an A+ Rating from the BBB in spite of 17 negative reviews on their own site not counting this one. BBB may not be the best place to go for advice.

      Reply
      • Better Business Bureau sided with them and didn’t do a [redacted] thing. Better Business Bureau is a joke and they’re a paid entity by these companies so you are not going to get a true Better Business Bureau resolution. There a bunch of [redacted] pieces of scheming donkey [redacted]!!!

        Reply
  9. I too completely agree with this assessment of this piece of [redacted] company they are a complete piece of [redacted] company and only care about their bottom line. They do not care about their customers. They are the worst insurance company to ever go through, they are way overpriced and overrated and they are a big [redacted] scam. A lying piece of [redacted] scam and I can prove and verify it.

    Reply
  10. Had one claim with them. Got hit in a parking lot out of town. Called them on the spot and by the time we got home we had a check In the mail. Also 2 glass claims. Fixed next day. Home and auto bundle. Can’t beat the price and service.

    Reply
  11. I have been using Pekin for many years Whenever I had a problem they took care of it promptly. Hard to read some of these reviews. I would recommend them to anyone.

    Reply
  12. i though pekin was a decent company when we first got our home and auto insurance. did not have any problems the first couple of years. but then every thing changed. on one occasion i did make a mistake and the payment was one day late did not mail it soon enough my fault but a honest mistake. but the way they saw it was like i had not paid them for months had to pay three months up front for them to reinstate the insurance. i was not happy but did it and got over it. then about six months later i had started paying online . was waiting to make the payment on payday which i would assume most people do. it was also due on payday. not a problem went to there web site made the payment go a confirmation code saying it went thru on there web site two day later a get a call that i am cancel for not paying told them i had paid and that the bank showed the money came out of my account and gave them the confirmation code that there web site gave me and they still said it did not go thru and that i was still canceled. even through my bank say they took the money out. told them that was fine i was done with there company and wanted my payment back. they still have it to this point just keep giving me excuses. will not recomned them to anyone. worst insurance company i have ever seen. be ware they will lie to you and try to get more money out of you one way or another. and they do not provide any good service

    Reply
  13. DO NOT USE PEKIN INSURANCE I had Pekin Ins. through an independent agent who dropped them. I got coverage through another company and now Pekin wants to charge me for cancelling. Save yourself some headaches and get someone else.

    Reply
  14. Worst insurance company and claims adjuster I have had the misfortune to deal with. The woman who rear-ended my car was insured by this joke of a company. The Pekin adjuster was very difficult to deal with and rarely available at either of her phone numbers. When I finally did get her on the phone, she seemed more interested in telling me what Pekin would not do for me than in helping me get a fair adjustment/settlement for my car. Her manner was obtuse and she seemed unable to respond to my questions with anything more than scripted responses. Although I was the injured party and her job was to compensate me for my loss, her manner and responses lead me to believe that she just wanted me to take the settlement she offered and go away. My car had many safety and performance upgrades and was meticulously maintained, yet she was utterly unwilling to consider the value of my specific vehicle–the one her insured had hit and seriously damaged. I finally had to call her office and leave a message for her supervisor to get a response from her. After I accepted the miserly settlement offered–I needed to buy another vehicle, Pekin failed to notify AZ DMV that the car had been deemed a total loss, and I received a notice of De-Insurance on the totaled car. I hope their rates are very cheap because that is all their service is worth. If you have to seek compensation from this joke of a company, let your insurance company deal with them!

    Reply
    • I’m willing to bet your adjuster’s name was [Redacted]…..We have been having issues with her as well….I contacted https://insurance.az.gov/consumers/help-problem/filing-complaint, and someone else returned my call two days later, promising to call back the next day…and that was 6 days ago!

      Reply
      • The fish rots from the head down – it’s not one adjuster or another it’s a leadership issue when they stop caring that they are losing customers for life

        Reply
  15. Pekin represents all that is bad within the “insurance industry”. They make ignorant decisions based on metrics that do not represent life’s realities and decisions that caused great stress and inconvenience to a great customer. In my line of work, if I treated my client as they have me and my family, I would be out of business before long. However, they have the luxury of being protected from reality and the negative impact they have on others, by the sheer size and volume in numbers. After all, why should they be concerned with the loss of one customer when they have so many at their disposal?
    I will tell everyone, every agent, anyone who crosses my path in life, and through every channel possible (like this one), to never consider Pekin Insurance when shopping for auto insurance. Oh, and that they don’t trust the opinion and advise of their local agent either so you will have no advocate through your local agent if you run into a difficult situation. I am a credible voice since I now know firsthand that when I needed Pekin most, they where not there for me, my family or my agent. Even if you have never had an accident, never missed a premium payment, and as a primary provider of insurance for your family where most members of your household have impeccable driving records and no member has ever had an at fault accident, over decades of driving combined, Pekin will throw you into the flawed actuarial scrap heap of impersonal statistics and dump you when you need them most.
    I am not naïve, there may only be a hand full of insurance companies who actually care about their customers but I will find one and be loyal to them which is much more than I can say for Pekin. I will be purchasing a significant amount of auto insurance in my lifetime and you can be sure none of it will be with Pekin.
    Pekin, please change your moto “Beyond the expected” since it is false advertising. You may in fact qualify as the poster child for the negative stereotype earned by much of the insurance industry and exactly what most “expect” anyway.

    Reply
    • Thanks Robb.I am dealing with these people now and getting stonewalled. I sent pictures and gave them details and diagrams of what happened and a week later, they said they are still investigating. They have nothing to investigate.These people are impossible to deal with. I will have to use my insurance and let them deal with this.

      Reply
      • Kelly,

        Again, my experience and now yours…when you need them most they are not there for you. Dump them first chance you get they show no sign of changing or caring. In fact I have not read a favorable review on Pekin ever. Should have checked before I purchased.

        Good luck the rest of the way.

        Reply
  16. I recently switch both my auto and home owners over to Pekin. What a [Redacted] they are. I was sent a letter letting me know that someone was going to contact me to set up a required inspection of my home for value verification. I asked for an appointment so I could provide access to my home for the inspection. They just showed up and called me and told me that my property was all locked up (Dah !) I provided them with 4 options for future times and dates that I would be available, not a call, letter, or email. They just showed up again. With this kind of crappy service, I am not at all surprised that most of the comments above are negative. I wouldn’t recommend this company to my worst enemy. Working with other agents to replace this big mistake.

    Reply
  17. Worst company in insurance industry, no proper process. The send a notice on cancelling insurance, and next day they cancel it. Before reaching first notice to customer, they take decision without knowledge to first notice to customer.

    Also they increase premium, without any reason. I would advice to my friends, pay more premium to other company, even if they given don’t take insurance

    Reply
  18. I recently purchased a medgap plan was told by another company that Pekin increases premiums witout just cause. I just need to know the truth.

    Reply
  19. Dealing with the other Insurance company was a pain. Assist me with help to get the repairs done Pekin did not have to pay for anything! By the faults of other drivers insurance your rep talked me into making a claim.

    Reply
  20. This is the Worst insurance I have ever seen. Our family was involved in an accident where a woman hit us. The woman was underinsured- Pekin insurance didn’t want to open an underinsured claim and has been horrible to deal with. We are filing a complaint with the insurance board. Beware- I never had a claim before and the one time we need them they shirk their responsibility

    Reply
  21. Pekin is the BEST insurance you can have for your car or home. I’m not only a customer but a contractor who deals with them often on home owners claims. Pekin will never cheat you out of a claim in any way. I have NEVER had any issue what so ever with them. Which is incredible considering I have had to deal with them 30+ times. They pay for everything that’s damaged, they don’t low ball the estimates and are quick to release the funds to return you to pre claim condition. And if that wasn’t enough, as I said I’m also a customer for my autos and home and they were CHEAPER than my previous insurer

    Reply
    • Pekin is the worst insurance you can have for your home or car! Sorry John. I’ve had Pekin Ins. for my home and 2 autos for about 8 or 9 years and have never filed a claim. Almost 4 weeks ago we had a bad storm here and I had a small amount of damage, under $5,000. Pekin wants me to pay for my roof repair then submit the bill! They also want to give me 75% of the estimate until repairs are made and verified by them at which time they say they will release the remaining 25% of the claim monies to me and who knows how long that will take! Also, talk about low-balling on an estimate, they must be using handyman labor costs in this estimate because no licensed contractor would complete the fence, roof and soffit and fascia repair for the price I am being quoted. Just saying, I will be looking for a new insurance company!

      Reply
  22. This Is the WORST insurance company by far that we have ever dealt with in the last 35 years!!!!
    Their Agent is as bad as the company and not trained at all He never returns his calls which makes things even more frustrating!!!! Based on the agent’s quote and assurance we canceled our home and car insurances with American Family in Dec 2014 and then after couple of months pekin charged us $300 more on our home Ins, saying our house is valued more than they assumed!!! That made it double of what we were paying to American Family!!! Then in Oct 2015, we received a Termination Letter for no reason! saying ‘ Ineligible For Coverage, Central Station alarm not updated As Required”
    this came as a shock!!! We were never told of such requirement!!! We work in our house and therefore we are home all the time if we knew of this requirement we would have NEVER gone with them and pay double the money we paid to them!!!!I do not recommend this business! They are expensive and have the worst customer service!!! To this day I can not get any one to explain to me what the termination letter is all about!!! We live in a very safe area in North Scottsdale and Never had a claim!!!!

    Reply
  23. Would NOT advise anyone to use this company! Any speeding ticket will get you cancelled. Never had any claims either!!

    Reply
    • We have also a problem. It’s been a month since they don’t have any response with our problem. We have to get together to shut down this company.

      Reply
  24. Pekin’s service is deplorable. They act as judge, jury, and executioner. In this country you are innocent until proven guilty. In Pekin’s world ,it’s their bat and ball and they call the shots. I contracted with them to help in times of trouble and all they have done is cause me trouble. I will be posting all negative experiences and it probably won’t have much impact, but it will get to someones ears. I will also be making a complaint to the Illinois Insurance Commission.
    Thank you for nothing
    Max Winters

    Reply

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