Auto Insurance Question

Our Cobalt was stolen a couple of weeks ago. We got it back, undamaged, a few hours later. But we couldn’t find the keys. We must assume that the thieves kept them so they would have a convenient getaway vehicle whenever they want. We’re rekeying the door, trunk, and ignition as well as reprogramming the remote. But our insurer won’t pay for the amount over our deductible. The locksmith was quite surprised, and he deals with a lot of auto insurance claims. We have Geico, the state is South Carolina, and the car will be there for at least another 1.5 years until our daughter graduates. If she works in SC, the car will remain longer. Does anyone have experience or knowledge in this area?

How did we get it back so quickly? OnStar located it and the police were at the car in less than one hour.

Ah, the joys of discount insurance :frowning:

Discount? Gieco’s not exactly “discount”. They’re one of the few that will insure just about anything, though.

How did they steal your car with the keys?

No damage, no payout. It’s your choice to re-key everything. I’d maybe just wire up a secret switch that won’t allow the battery to deliver power to the starter unless the switch is on.

While the residents were at the Extremely Big Football Game, their house was broken into and ransacked. All the electronics were stolen as well as money. The keys were on the kitchen counter, and the thieves needed a getaway vehicle. They just backed it out of the garage and off they went.

Goldwing, apparently there are insurers that pay for rekeying. The locksmith suggested contacting our insurer, and was surprised that they would not cover it. Apparently there a many insurers that cover rekeying. Our homeowners policy covers rekeying our house (our house key was on the ring) even though the theft was 500 miles away. IMO the insurer would want to avoid paying us over $10,000 if the thieves decided to take the car again and we couldn’t get it back.

Every state I have lived in has an insurance commissioner. One discussion with the geico rep and mentioning the name, if that doesn’t do then call the commissioner and see what they say.

I don’t think the insurance commissioner will get involved in a lock change dispute. Insurance commissioners make sure that policies include the frameworks established by law, license agents, investigate fraud and so on. If it is not in the fine print of the policy, I’m not sure what they would do about it.

There are two body shops I know of that won’t even deal with Geico. You have Geico…they’ll show you the door out. Progressive also.

I’ve had insurance with Geico for almost 30 years. I think I have a good idea who they are.

There should be no question that this would be covered as long as it is proven as theft. Any “normal” carrier would. I have worked with Geico on several repairs and they have some grossly convoluted ideas concerning proper repairs. I want every job that comes in my door, except for the Geico jobs.

jtsanders, I am not passing judgement on your decision to use Geico but IMOO from experience the “15 minute, online” are the biggest PITB’s for shops and the vehicle owners.They ought to spent more time focusing on insurance instead of funny commercials.

Always make your demand IN WRITING. Yes, I’m yelling. A phone call is good, email is better, and a real, certified, return receipt requested letter to the insurance company, with a cc noted to the Insurance Commissioner in your State, with a specific demand (I hereby request that you honor your insurance contract and deal with me in good faith by reimbursing the $672 I had to spend to replace all the locks and keys) is the strongest thing you can do. Everything else can be denied without a record. You want a written denial, not some bozo’s words.

Make them put it in writing, cc the insurance commissioner, and use the term “good faith” in discussing their responsibility. You’ll be surprised by the results.

Since the keys were stolen FROM THE HOUSE, the homeowners policy should cover the re-keying of the house AND CAR KEYS! You are going after the wrong insurance company…

Caddyman, we discussed the mater with both insurers. Wentwest, your suggestion about putting the request in writing is an excellent idea. We’ll do that, and maybe try both insurers. Not that the house is not owned by my daughfer; she is a renter. But our homeowner’s insurance does cover all her other stuff. This is the first time I’ve had a quibble with Geico’s offered settlements.

Was the car insured against theft?

I agree with Littlemouse and Caddyman. Maybe Your auto policy does not protect you in this situation…have you read it ? You had better read it your self. There may be other unforeseen situations and one of the very few times that having the same carrier for both home and auto is worth it…as JT intimates in his suggested solution. My home owner’s covers my car on my property for theft and damage, and replcement of property inside house…there is a deductible often though and maybe the keying didn’t reach it.