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Gainsco auto insurance review for 2021

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    Article Highlights

    Since 1978, Gainsco has served drivers in need of non-standard auto insurance policies. Specializing in minimum-limits personal auto insurance, Gainsco is a property and casualty insurance holding company based in Texas with a regional office in Miami, Florida. Through its insurance company subsidiary, MGA Insurance Company, Inc., Gainsco provides flexible solutions at a competitive price for high-risk drivers that may not be able to obtain coverage through the standard marketplace.

    Carrier quick points

    • Region Offered: Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Virginia
    • Market Share: 0.16%
    • AM Best Rating: B++
    • Specialty Coverages: Non-owner Auto Insurance, SR-22 Form, No-fault Insurance, Towing & Rental Coverage

    Gainsco customer satisfaction and complaints

    According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), the national complaint index for Gainsco is much higher than what’s considered average. The average complaint index is 1.00; MGA Insurance Company, Inc. features a national complaint index of 5.01, meaning there are five times more complaints from customers than the average carrier.

    Despite Gainsco’s higher-than-average customer complaint index, the company could see improvements in this department thanks to the recently announced acquisition by State Farm in September 2020. According to the NAIC, State Farm’s complaint index is only marginally above-average at 1.28. Time will tell if the acquisition will have a positive impact on Gainsco customers’ experiences.

    Gainsco auto insurance discounts

    Non-standard insurance policies for high-risk drivers can be quite costly. Gainsco helps alleviate some of the financial stress placed upon high-risk drivers by offering special discounts. Included among Gainsco’s auto insurance discounts are the following:

    Auto-pay

    By signing up for auto-payments, Gainsco customers can save on their insurance rates. Policyholders may sign up by auto-paying via checking account, credit card or debit card. Auto-pay can be set up during initial enrollment with help from your insurance agent.

    Pay-in-full

    Customers can nix monthly payments for their auto insurance coverage altogether by paying for their policy in-full. This often saves a bit on the overall premium as well.

    Prior coverage

    High-risk drivers that had coverage elsewhere prior to signing up with Gainsco can also receive a discount on their policy. Drivers must be able to prove that they had at least six months of active coverage under their previous provider in order to qualify for the discount. Even if you’ve had up to a 30-day lapse in coverage, you still may be able to qualify for the discount.

    Prior Gainsco coverage

    If you had a previous policy with Gainsco, you’ll be rewarded for your loyalty with a discount on your premium.

    Advance purchase

    Policyholders that renew their coverage before the effective date can receive a discount on their future premiums. The advance purchase must be made at least three days before the policy’s effective date in order to qualify for the discount.

    Length of ownership

    Drivers that own their vehicles may qualify for a discount based on the length of time they owned their vehicle. Your insurance agent will apply the discount based on the number of years you owned your car. You may be required to submit proof of ownership to qualify.

    Homeowner

    Gainsco doesn’t offer homeowners’ insurance products; however, it does reward customers that are homeowners with active policies elsewhere. If you own a home, mobile home, condo or townhome, you may qualify for a discount if you are able to prove that you have an active homeowners’ insurance policy through another insurer.

    Renewal

    Even if you miss the advance purchase window, you’ll be able to receive a discount simply for renewing your policy with Gainsco.

    Multi-car

    Have more than one vehicle that needs protecting? If you insure multiple vehicles under one Gainsco policy, you’ll receive a discount on your premium. It’s important to note, however, that Gainsco only allows up to two extra vehicles per policy.

    Gainsco Auto Insurance Premium Length

    One of the main advantages to having an auto insurance policy with Gainsco is that the company offers flexible payment options to customers. Gainsco provides policies in six-month terms with three different payment plans:

    • 6.67% Down/5 Installments: Policyholders pay 6.67% of their total premium within 20 days of enrollment, followed by five installments paid over the next five months.
    • 22% Down/4 Installments: Policyholders pay 22% of their total premium within 30 days of enrollment, followed by four installments paid over the next four months.
    • 25% Down/5 Installments: Policyholders pay 25% of their total premium within 30 days of enrollment, followed by five installments paid over the next five months.

    For additional flexibility, payments may be made 24/7 through Gainsco’s online portal or by phone at 866-424-6726. Gainsco accepts credit or debit cards and insured checks for down payments.

    Gainsco vs. other insurance companies

    To better illustrate how Gainsco compares to other auto insurance companies, Coverage compared the carrier to others based on region of availability, discounts offered, customer satisfaction and financial strength ratings.

    Gainsco vs. Progressive

    As a non-standard provider, Gainsco is very different from Progressive. In contrast to Gainsco, Progressive’s auto insurance is offered in all 50 United States and Washington, D.C., far surpassing Gainsco in terms of availability. In addition, Progressive also features an above-average AM Best financial strength rating of A+ compared to Gainsco’s B++ rating. 

    Because it is not a non-standard insurance provider, Progressive also offers more discounts, with 13 available for things like teen drivers, safe driving and multi-policy. However superior Progressive may be in terms of availability, discounts, and financial strength, its customer complaint index is three times the national average according to the NAIC. This is one aspect in which Progressive and Gainsco share common ground.

    Gainsco vs. The General

    Compared to The General, Gainsco has slightly more in common. The General auto insurance policies are offered in all United States except for Hawaii, Massachusetts, Michigan, and New Jersey. As a subsidiary of American Family Insurance, The General does not have its own rating through AM Best or J.D. Power, likely because it is a high-risk insurer and not widely available, similar to Gainsco. 

    The General offers far more discounts than Gainsco, however, including military discounts, vehicle safety equipment discounts, good student discounts, multi-policy discounts, and more. Additionally, The General’s customer complaint index according to the NAIC is only slightly above the national average with a rating of 1.03.

    Gainsco mobile app and digital experience

    Gainsco offers plenty of digital tools that help policyholders make payments, report claims and request quotes. Included among Gainsco’s digital tools are the following:

    • Mobile app: Available for both iOS and Android devices, policyholders can use the mobile app to make payments, request quotes, contact agents, and submit claims.
    • Online portal: Through the online portal, customers can make payments, submit claims, request quotes, and access contact resources to reach available agents.
    • 24/7 hotline: Customers can make payments 24/7 through the available hotline at 866-424-6726.

    In the spotlight

    • Gainsco offers flexible solutions with competitive rates for high-risk drivers in need of specialty coverage.
    • Despite a higher-than-average customer complaint index, State Farm’s acquisition of Gainsco could provide a boost to the company’s customer service department based on State Farm’s lower customer complaint index.
    • Gainsco specializes in minimum-limits personal auto insurance in the non-standard personal auto insurance marketplace.

    If you live in Gainsco’s service region and are a high-risk driver seeking affordable coverage with flexible payment options, this carrier could be the right choice for you. Especially if you’re having difficulty obtaining coverage through the standard marketplace and are only seeking the minimum coverage required in your state, Gainsco can help find you the lowest rates available for your specific situation. With State Farm’s impending acquisition of the company, existing Gainsco customers could stand to benefit from the transition — only time will tell.

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