Aug 152011

Unitrin Logo This morning, Unitrin announced that Unitrin Inc. is changing its name to Kemper Corporation effective August 25, 2011. Unitrin purchased the Kemper personal lines business in 2002. The company will incorporate the Kemper name in many of its other business units over time. Unitrin Specialty, the company we are able to make available to clients, will eventually become Kemper Specialty.

“Kemper is a legendary name in the insurance industry, and it offers an opportunity to create a unified brand for our family of companies and a strong platform for continued growth and expansion,” said Don Southwell, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer. “The Kemper name fits who we have become as a company,” Southwell continued. “It allows us to bring together all of our approximately 7,000 employees under one banner that reinforces our position as a straightforward company that delivers personal service and financial excellence in all of our interactions.” Today, the company is delivering on that promise – Unitrin Inc. will become Kemper Corporation on August 25, 2011.

Read press release

Aug 112011

Tri-City Herald The Tri-City Herald reported today that a Pasco man was charged for presenting a false insurance claim, aka insurance fraud.

After allegedly backing into another party he quickly bought an insurance policy to try to get it covered. Problem is, you are supposed to buy insurance in case of an accident — not because of an accident.

Harris then allegedly drove to Mid-Columbia Insurance at noon and got a policy for the pickup, effective 12:28 p.m.

As a part of the sign-up process, an agent inspected the truck and noticed damage to the driver’s rear side and bumper area. Harris claimed he had not been in a recent crash.

Then on Nov. 16, Harris called the insurance agency to report being in a collision the previous day at about 1:30 p.m., court documents said. He later reportedly said it happened an hour later.

What makes this more interesting is that Mid-Columbia Insurance was the place he went to get his car insurance! Little did he know that the documentation the agent made would add to the evidence against him.

The case goes to trial on October 3rd. Will be interesting to see what transpires.

Aug 102011

GMAC Which age group claims to be paying the most attention behind the wheel? How much do you you use your phone while driving?

The GMAC Insurance Distracted Driving Study, part of the 7th Annual National Drivers Test, asked drivers about their driving habits to determine just how focused people are when they’re behind the wheel. Fifty-six percent of the national driving public said they have completely eliminated making calls, texting and sending emails while they’re behind the wheel. And, another 32 percent said they’re using their phones less while driving.

The most startling numbers come from the 16-17 year old drivers on the roads. Seventy-five percent of the youngest drivers said they have completely eliminated usage of their mobile devices while driving. In fact, this youngest age group is the most likely to say they have completely eliminated mobile phone usage behind the wheel. Right behind the youngest drivers are the oldest drivers on the road. Seventy-two percent of drivers age 60-65 said they have completely eliminated mobile phone usage behind the wheel.

The worst offenders are the drivers age 25-34. Seventy-two percent of drivers in this age group are still admittedly using their cell phones to make calls, text and even send email.

While there’s a noticeable difference in distracted driving habits across different age groups, there’s not much of a difference between men and women. Fifty-eight percent of men and 54 percent of women say they have completely eliminated the use of their mobile devices while driving.

The biggest deterrents stopping people from using their mobile phones behind the wheel have been news stories featuring accidents caused by distracted driving, mobile phone bans and laws and ad campaigns and initiatives that urge people to put their mobile devices away while driving. Interestingly, eight out of 10 drivers say they have never been distracted or even came close to having an accident due to using a mobile device while driving.

What do you think? How much do you you use your phone while driving?

Source: GMAC Insurance