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Review of Liberty Mutual Insurance
Oct 20, 2020
Liberty Mutual is a dependable nationwide auto insurer that has a robust product list, plentiful discount choices, and many optional add-on benefits. Depending on your state, premiums can be as much as 58% lower than comparable coverage through other carriers, so they are always worth getting a quote from.
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Liberty Mutual Insurance has been providing protection to families and businesses since 1912. They are headquartered on the historic Berkley Street in Boston, MA. The company is currently ranked as the world’s sixth largest property and casualty insurer. Last year the insurance carrier wrote worldwide premiums worth $39.8 billion dollars of which $2.3 billion dollars came from stateside property premiums.
Liberty Mutual offers a full line of personal insurance, as well as business coverages. Consumers have the option of working directly with Liberty or through their nationwide network of independent agents. Liberty Mutual is a brand name carrier that most American households are very familiar with, either because generations of their own family have been insured by Liberty or they have seen the insurer’s popular marketing campaigns.
Liberty Mutual is highly rated by all three of the mainstream rating companies. This is because Liberty is found to have an excellent ability to meet their financial obligations, including paying claims for policyholders.
- A.M. Best: “A” rating, 3rd highest of 16 possible ratings
- Standard & Poor’s: “A” rating, 6th highest of 21 possible ratings
- Moody’s: “A2” rating, 6th highest of 21 possible ratings
In addition, most of the Liberty’s nearly 60 subsidiaries (including Safeco, North Pacific, Ohio Casualty) are also positively rated by A.M. Best, Standard & Poor’s, and Moody’s rating companies. Each of the subordinate carriers that have been reviewed did receive high financial stability ratings as well. None of Liberty’s subordinate carriers have earned a rating lower than an A.
Liberty is not known as a budget auto insurer but rather a quality car insurance carrier. In fact, evaluating various aspects of Liberty Mutual premiums reveals that their rates can fluctuate broadly depending on the insured’s profile. Depending on your home state, driving history, credit score, vehicle model, and various other factors, premiums may be expensive or relatively low cost. The range of pricing results is quite broad.
For this reason, it’s always a good idea to get a price quote from them. There is always the chance that you can get a low price from one of the highest rated insurers available.
It’s worth noting, Liberty prices plans based on a full twelve-month policy term. This means you won’t be receiving a possible rate renewal increase for a full year. Most auto insurers prefer to go with a 6-month policy term and their premium reflects that choice. Keep this in mind when you are comparing auto insurer pricing.
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The Better Business Bureau (BBB) accredited Liberty Mutual way back in 1931. The carrier’s current BBB rating is a strong “A+” despite 984 customer complaints. The BBB customer complaint data doesn’t provide any details. Also, the BBB website has 402 customer reviews with an average of 1.0/5.0 stars. Although that does sound low for such a well-recognized carrier, it’s worth mentioning there are 0 negative BBB reviews for 2018 and 2019. So far this year, BBB shows only one negative BBB customer review.
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) publishes a large volume of carrier stats when it comes to customer satisfaction. Over the last three years the majority (60%) of Liberty customer dissatisfaction has been focused on only three states, which change from year to year. When we drill down further into Liberty’s NAIC data, we observed that of the remaining 47 states (and D.C.), the auto carrier receives very few complaints: 1 per state (2019), 2 per state (2018), 3 per state (2017). Over time, it’s also clear Liberty Mutual has steadily decreased the total number of auto complaints. We can only assume this means the carrier is trying to better serve their auto insureds.
NAIC consumer issues with Liberty Mutual are particular to claims handling. In fact, the overwhelming percentage of all complaints, year after year, are about claims processing: 56% claims issues (2019), 68% claims issues (2018), and 71% claims issues (2017). This isn’t surprising in the insurance industry because claims are always a stressful matter that can lead to dissatisfaction. An insurance carrier would have to provide white glove service to get over this common pitfall and even then, there might still be an insured that isn’t 100% happy.
Last year J.D. Power and Associates announced that Liberty Mutual is about average when it comes to claim satisfaction. This opinion from a third-party organization supports our conclusion above.
Liberty Mutual offers the convenience of filing a new property claim via their website or through their free mobile app (iOS, Android). The auto insurer indicates filing an auto claim will only take 5-10 minutes. You’ll also have the option of requesting an “Express Estimate” when you submit photos of your car’s damage.
Finally, Liberty insureds may elect to have their vehicle repaired at one of the over 2,000 auto body shops participating in Liberty’s Guaranteed Repair Network. The benefits of going with a Guaranteed Repair shop versus another are as follows:
- 100% guarantee on repairs for as long as you own the vehicle
- Follow along as the vehicle is repaired by logging into eService
- Liberty will quickly and easily pay the repair shop directly
- Liberty insureds receive priority repair service over other customers
Of course, there’s no obligation to use Liberty’s Guaranteed Repair network.
Liberty Mutual has a robust list of auto insurance discounts that are broken down by discounts for you, your car, your policy, and your driving. As with any big company, the available discounts may vary by state so be sure to double-check with a Liberty agent.
- Early Shopper (45% discount)
- Online Purchase (12% discount)
- Group Membership (10% discount)
- Student Away-at-School
- Good Student
- Advanced Safety Features
- Anti-Theft Device
- Alternative Energy Vehicle (e.g. electric or hybrid)
- Accident Free Driver
- Violation (Ticket) Free
- Preferred Payment (automatic payment setup)
- Paperless Discount
Liberty offers as much as a 30% discount for their RightTrack program. As with Allstate and other popular auto insurers, Liberty Mutual also will reward safe driving behavior. RightTrack participants may have a vehicle plug-in, use the mobile app, or receive a key fob tag to monitor the motorist’s acceleration, braking, nighttime driving, and number of miles driven.
Liberty Mutual offers auto insurance throughout all 50 U.S. states, as well as the District of Columbia. The carrier’s marketing puts a big emphasis on the tagline “Only Pay for What You Need” and their customizable auto policies prove that to be true.
Standard Liberty auto policies include as little or as much coverage as you’d prefer. Liberty Mutual sells standard bodily injury liability, property damage, comprehensive, collision, and medical payments. Below is a breakdown of optional auto coverages consumers may purchase for added protection.
Accident Forgiveness: Motorists that have been crash-free for three years could be eligible to keep their premium from increasing when they do have an accident.
New Car Replacement: If your brand-new vehicle is totaled in the first model year and first 15,000 miles, Liberty will reimburse the cost of a replacement car, not just the depreciated value.
Better Car Replacement: The carrier will reimburse you for a vehicle that’s one model year newer and with 15,000 fewer miles on it than the one that was totaled. You won’t find this optional benefit being sold by most other auto insurers.
Gap Insurance: This coverage will protect a financed vehicle that is totaled, and more is owed on the auto loan than the car is worth.
Deductible Fund: Liberty will establish a “fund” to lower your collision deductible amount. Liberty contributes $70 per year while you contribute $30 per year. You can tap into the fund should you get into an accident and need to meet your deductible.
Teacher’s Auto Insurance: In some states, educators can purchase this extra coverage that kicks-in while you’re on school grounds. This benefit will protect your car and any teaching materials in your car from collision, theft, and vandalism.
Mexico Car Insurance: If you’ll be traveling south of the border, you can buy this add-on insurance.
Of course, you can pick from even more optional auto insurance benefits like roadside assistance (roadside assistance review) and rental reimbursement. It’s best to talk with a Liberty Mutual insurance agent about what types of coverage and discounts are available within your area.
In addition to auto insurance, Liberty also sells a variety of specialty policies such as umbrella insurance, home insurance, motorcycle insurance, life insurance, and business insurance.
Liberty Mutual has been recognized as being the “best” by many different organizations, including the following:
- 2020 Forbes Best Place to Work for New Graduates
- 2020 Military Times “Best for Vets Employers”
- 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 Forbes Best Places to Work for Women
- 2020 Human Rights Campaign’s “Best Places to Work for LGBTQ equality
- 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 Fortune & Great Places to Work “Best Workplaces for Diversity”
- 2019 Great Place to Work Certification from Great Place to Work US
- 2019 People Magazine’s “50 Companies That Care” (Liberty ranked #37)
- 2019, 2020 Military Friendly organization’s “Military Friendly Employer”
Liberty Mutual has founded several of their own internal philanthropic programs to give back in communities throughout America, places where they do business. The carrier also encourages their employees to not only donate financially to good causes but to also donate their time. To date, the insurer and its employees have donated more than $45,000,000 to various charities.
Liberty Mutual is considered an international insurer but they’ve really built their reputation on American coverage. The property insurer is as apple pie and Uncle Sam as their Statue of Liberty logo displays. The auto carrier sells personal protection products nationwide that are customizable, come with decent discounts, and have strong financial backing. Bottom line: if you’re looking for a reliable insurer, Liberty Mutual makes the grade.