Thursday, October 26, 2006

Pemco Billing

PEMCO is our auto insurance company. Their claims service and rates basically kick butt. I've only had to make one claim, but they were shockingly good. They handled everything very professionally and efficiently. There's another shoe here and it's dropping right about... now. When it comes to paying the monthly bill, they stink with the stench of a thousand rotting camels. You essentially have two options:

1) Pay the full amount at once.
2) Let them take the money out of your account on a monthly basis.

They apparently do not allow you to simply pay on a monthly basis using something like your online billpayer. They only want to play the monthly payment game if they get to take the money for you. Whats even better, if the payment "bounces" even once, they silently stop taking monthly payments and let your policy quietly lapse. Thankfully that didn't happen to us.

To go with option 2, you have to send them a voided check. If you don't have a voided check, you've got to go to your bank and get documentation that you can fax to pemco. Apparently it's not ok to simply give them your routing number and account number over the phone because "we need to verify that it's your account". You see, it's for my security ;) You have to fax or mail in a copy of a voided check. Uggghhhh, I call BS! I don't even have to do that with payroll anymore at my job.

They can very easily take your information over the phone and simply call the bank on your behalf to verify that the account belongs to you. "Oh no, we can't do that because of privacy rules!". Once again I call BS. Credit card companies do it *EVERY* time you have a transaction. It's no longer enough in most cases to simply give a credit card number, they need your "billing address" too so that they can match up all of that information. In the case of the insurance company, they'd simply say to your bank "Hi, we're Pemco, we've got a customer named blah blah blah who lives at blah blah blah who claims to have account number XYZ123, is that correct?" and the bank would say, "Yes" or "No", just like the credit card company.

Ugggh, get with the new millenium PEMCO. It shouldn't be this hard to give you money!

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