UPDATED: Nov 30, 2018
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About United Equitable
United Equitable offers very little in the way of information about either the company or its products on the website, which is basic and limited. The company is connected with Lakeshore Finance and American Heartland Insurance as part of the same group.
The company website is set up entirely for either existing customers needing to pay a bill or make a claim, or for agents and prospective agents. It is clear from this lack of new client information that this company does not bring in new business very often through their website.
Even the United Equitable Group page has very little information, listing the three companies they own and redirecting visitors off to the only slightly more useful company pages.
From further digging, it became clear that United Equitable writes non-standard auto insurance, serving the high-risk market. They appear to sell their products exclusively through independent agents, which is fairly common for non-standard insurers. The company is based in Skokie, Illinois.
United Equitable Products
Due to the lack of information for this company, it is not surprising we had a difficult time finding anything useful whatsoever in terms of what products they offer. In order to determine anything, we combed through the policy terms document that is one of many documents that can be downloaded on the website and the only place that any details on coverage and endorsements can be found. This document is not meant to be a source of policy information for those in the process of shopping for coverage, and it is complex and detailed, written in legal language not intended for the average insurance shopper to read.
Other options include a non-owner endorsement, rental reimbursement, legal expense reimbursement, automobile loss payable endorsement, roadside assistance, and something called Autovisor.
Autovisor is an endorsement that provides coverage for mechanical repairs to a vehicle; it is essentially a mechanical breakdown endorsement. It covers mechanical problems that are not related to an accident.
This is an unusual endorsement for any insurance company, but particularly for a small, non-standard insurance company.
In keeping with the lack of marketing-focused information on the website, United Equitable does not offer online quoting as an option nor do they provide rate information on their website.
As a non-standard insurer, we would not expect this company to compete with any of the standard insurance companies; non-standard rates should only be compared with other non-standard companies. High-risk drivers that need to get coverage from a non-standard company typically pay higher rates than those that qualify for standard, so it is unlikely that United Equitable is particularly competitive.
Some of the complaints we read as part of this review have referred to this company as “cheap” and “low cost”, however, so they must be a cheap option for some drivers. That said, cheap is only worth it if the company pays claims, and we will look at that issue further along in this review.
The claims section of the website seems to be the only area that contains any useful information.
Claims can be filed online or over the phone, although the toll-free claims line is only available during business hours. Those hours are listed as Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., presumably Central Time.
Claims forms are also available for download on the website.
There is no indication as to whether this company uses a preferred repair shop network and no further information on the claims process available.
Ratings and Consumer Reviews
United Equitable has an F rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), which is the lowest possible score and one we do not see very often. The F rating is given for the 72 complaints that have been filed against the company, 44 of which they did not respond to at all and two of which were never closed.
The 56 reviews on Google are all negative and repeat the same complaints; the company does not pay claims, does not communicate, and has poor customer service when it can be reached at all.
The 20 negative reviews on Yelp reflect the same complaints. We were unable to find anything to redeem this company’s reputation.
The Bottom Line
The non-standard market can be difficult, but there are insurers out there with a much better reputation and a customer-focused approach that United Equitable lacks. The repeated complaints citing the same issues, F-rating from the BBB, and utter lack of information from the company itself leads us to recommend looking elsewhere for your car insurance.
For a list of companies that we recommend, visit our Best Insurance Companies page.