(Louis Abate)

Verizon And Asurion Cast Me Into Smartphone Replacement Purgatory

Smartphone replacement purgatory is a dreary and tragic state. When the tiny and fragile creatures called smartphones are defective, people who have come to depend on the pocket-sized computers and who are trapped in data plans are stuck. Their warranty or phone insurance plan might provide them with a replacement, and sometimes that replacement works fine. Other times, that replacement is just as their original phone, throwing the customer into a cycle of replacements that never ends. This is what happened to reader B. when she got a Motorola Droid less than two years ago. [More]

(The Joy Of The Mundane)

Before House Fire Flames Are Out, Contractors And Adjusters Drum Up Business

When a house catches fire, there can be more than one type of first responder. There are the life-saving fire department and emergency medical services…and then there are the businesspeople selling repair and cleanup services, who sometimes arrive at the scene at the same time as the official first responders. Instead of hoses, axes, and ladders, these crews carry clipboards, contracts, and business cards. [More]

(mainfr4me)

UPDATE: Travel Insurer Decides To Listen To Customer’s Doctor After Public Shaming

Last month, we told you about a California woman whose travel insurance claim was denied because the insurance company posed her doctor a single yes/no question rather than let him explain his patient’s condition. After being shamed in public, the insurer is changing its tune — at least for this case. [More]

GEICO has never been afraid of running a character into the ground.

If You’re Not The GEICO Pig, You Should Probably Have Your Paper Insurance Card Handy

Unless you’re like me and the sight of the GEICO pig on your TV has you instantly lunging for the mute button, you may have seen the ads where the porcine insurance shill blabs on about the convenience of having his insurance card on his smartphone. That’s nice and all, but it won’t currently fly in most states. [More]

(frankieleon)

USPS Hasn’t Paid Insurance Claim After 14 Months, Says “Investigations Take Time”

It can take months or years of investigation to bring a criminal matter to trial, and complicated insurance matters can often drag on for extended periods of time without resolution. But does the U.S. Postal Service really need more than a year to pay a $30 insurance claim? [More]

(frankieleon)

Radio Shack Kiosk Worker Screws Up, Gets Our Phone Insurance Canceled

What happens when you do the responsible thing and buy insurance for your shiny and expensive new smartphone, but the insurance gets canceled because of an error that wasn’t yours? Well…Bill and his girlfriend aren’t sure. When the employee at a Radio Shack kiosk at their local Target billed a Mastercard gift card instead of their credit card or phone bill, the insurance got canceled early on. Three months in. Then, of course, his girlfriend dropped the phone. [More]

(Morton Fox)

MetLife Caught Penalizing Drivers Who Weren’t At Fault In Accidents

This story isn’t just about possible malfeasance by MetLife insurance in Massachusetts. It’s also a good example for why screwed-over consumers should file complaints with regulatory agencies. [More]

The results of the Bankrate survey.

More Than 1/3 Of Americans Paid More For Insurance In 2012

If the amount of money you paid for insurance last year went up, you are not alone. According to a new survey, 37% of Americans paid more for home, health, auto, or life insurance in 2012, while only 7% of people saw their insurance bill shrink. [More]

(Ninja M.)

Former Asurion Staffer Shares Insider Tips On Making Cellphone Insurance Claims

Anyone who has seen our numerous stories about readers dealing with Asurion, the insurance provider for an awful lot of wireless companies, knows that it might not always be the most pleasant experience. Now, a former front-line customer service rep at Asurion has written in to shed some light on what CSRs can and can’t do, and the best (and worst) ways to file your claim. [More]

(gavdana)

Illness Forces Woman To Cancel Cruise, But She’s Not Ill Enough To Make Travel Insurance Claim

UPDATE: TripMate has provided Consumerist with a statement, which has been added to the bottom of the post. [More]

Not a hurricane. Nope.

To Save Homeowners On Insurance Deductibles Governors Insist Sandy Wasn’t A Hurricane

Hurricane? What hurricane? Oh, Sandy? She was just a superstorm, say governors in states impacted by Sandy earlier this week. See, if she was a hurricane, homeowners would have to pay out anywhere from 1% to 5% of their homes’ values before insurance coverage would kick in. But if she wasn’t, as the governors of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut are saying, that deductible doesn’t have to be met. That will likely  result in huge savings for homeowners. Nice. [More]

(CBS Los Angeles)

Safeco Waits 57 Days To Inspect House Under Fungus Attack, Only Pays 5% Of Repair Costs

When your house is being devoured by a rare fungus, the last thing you want is for the insurance company to drag its feet in checking the problem out. Actually, that’s second-to-last. The last thing you want is for the insurance company to pay you pennies on the dollar for the repairs. [More]

(slolee)

Man’s Insurance Won’t Pay For Prosthetic Legs, He Turns To Selling Doughnuts To Raise Funds

What do you do if you need new legs and your insurance company won’t cover the cost? One man’s solution to such a quandary has led him to try and raise a whopping $120,000 for prosthetic legs by selling Krispe Kreme doughnuts in front of local stores in his South Carolina neighborhood. That’s a lot of doughnuts. [More]

(Josh Derr)

Will Hurricane Sandy Leave Higher Insurance Rates In Its Path?

People from the DC area to New England woke up this morning and began to check around their homes and property to see if they made it through Hurricane Sandy without being pummeled. But even if you’re not one of the ones wondering how your patio grill ended up in your attic, you might still be paying the price in higher insurance premiums. [More]

(TMQ.st.louis)

Pharmacists Confirm Pressure From Management To Refill Prescriptions Automatically

Since we began following the stories of CVS pharmacists who appear to have been pressured into automatically refilling customers’ prescriptions, regardless of whether or not a refill has been requested, we’ve received enough e-mails from from both customers and pharmacists at a number of companies who say these are not isolated incidents. [More]

SPLASH!

Verizon Uses Warranty-Voiding Photo To Sell Protection Plan

The Verizon/Asurion Total Equipment Coverage Plan looks neat sitting there on the shelf, with its pretty photo of a smartphone making a splash in a cool bin of water. As tipster and photo-taker Eric points out, though, why are they showing the phone plunging into a bin of water when the protection plan doesn’t cover water damage? We’ve heard from some people who know the plan well and who have pointed out that the plan has separate components: the Verizon part doesn’t cover liquid damage, but the insurance component from Asurion does. . However, intentionally throwing your phone in water in order to take a picture is still a bad idea. [More]

(The Master Shake Signal)

I Hate Progressive Insurance For Waking Me Up Over And Over

Tegan is mad at Flo from Progressive. Arguably, it’s her own fault: she leaves the TV on overnight as a sort of background noise. This leaves her and her fiancé at the mercy of whatever commercials run while they’re dozing. A new spot for Progressive insurance that advertises their mobile app features the loud, prominent sound of a vibrating phone. Most TV watchers might glance at their own phones in confusion, but Tegan was asleep, and was on call for work, so when she heard the vibrating sound, she woke up to check her phone. [More]

(Karen_Chappell)

Citi Has A Very Loose Definition Of “Expedited” When It Comes To Fixing Huge Holes In Roof

When a bank approves a short sale, you would think that it would do everything it can to not put that sale at risk, lest it lose even more money on the deal. But one pending short sale property in New Jersey has had holes in its roof for months because Citi thinks that not approving repairs to the roof is somehow a good idea. [More]