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Allstate car insurance (or car insurance, motor insurance) is insurance consumers can purchase for cars, trucks, and other vehicles from Allstate. Its primary use is to provide protection against losses incurred as a result of car accidents.

By buying Allstate, depending on the type of coverage purchased, the consumer may be protected against:


History of Allstate

Allstate was founded in 1931 as part of Sears, Roebuck & Co., and became a publicly traded company in 1993. At the time, the initial public offering of Allstate was the largest in U.S. history. On June 30, 1995, it became a totally independent company after Sears divested its remaining shares to Sears stockholders.

Allstate, based in Northbrook, Illinois, is one of the nation's leading insurers in urban areas and has supported auto and highway safety reforms including seat belts, air bags, and teen driver education. The company has won numerous awards over the years for its philanthropic and employee volunteerism efforts.

With a name borrowed from an automobile tire sold in the Sears catalog, and the backing of Sears, the great adventure of Allstate Insurance Company began on April 17, 1931.

On May 17, 1931, a tool-and-die maker from Aurora, Illinois, became the first policyholder. Allstate pays its first claim on the spot when an insured walks into the one-room Allstate office holding an auto door handle broken off in a theft attempt. By year-end, Allstate has 4,217 policies in force, a premium volume of $118,323 and 20 employees. The company suffers a $76,000 loss for the year.

At the Chicago World's Fair in 1933, Allstate's first agent sets a card table in the corner of the big Sears exhibit and is swamped with applications. By the next year, Allstate is placing agents in Sears stores. In 1937, Allstate hires its first full-time salaried claim adjuster. In 1939, Allstate startles the insurance industry by tailoring auto rates by age, mileage and use of car. The plan was so popular, the industry followed suit. Towing and emergency road service makes its debut. Written premium is $3.7 million with 113,472 policyholders and 529 employees. Allstate receives 25,461 claims for the year.

In 1942, Allstate develops a series of training courses for women agents to replace men on military leave. Women also are introduced to the functional handling of claims. In 1945, aAn Allstate post-war planning committee predicts Allstate will write $13 million in premium volume by 1949. 1949 written premium reaches $45.3 million. In 1945, tThe Germans' surrender on May 8 (VE Day) foreshadows the Japanese collapse on August 15 (VJ Day). The latter brings an immediate end to gasoline rationing and an enormous increase in claims and severity that keeps the Allstate claim department under great stress through most of 1946. Inflation means higher repair bills and larger verdicts in bodily injury suits. Allstate develops "Material Damage Men," who are specialists in repairs. Results are substantial savings and faster service.

Allstate creates an Illustrator Policy in 1947 using simpler language and illustrations to make it easier for customers to understand policy language and coverage. "Allstate...has something very useful to a long-suffering public," wrote one financial writer. In 1949, written premium is $45.3 million, with 708,763 policyholders and more than 2,800 employees. In 1950, "You're In Good Hands With Allstate®," one of the best known slogans in business history, is created by a sales manager to demonstrate the Allstate commitment to customers.

The Allstate Foundation in 1952 is created to support and improve neighborhoods, schools, communities and other non-profit organizations. Allstate opens the first Drive-in Claim Office, revolutionizing the way auto claims are handled. In 1953, Allstate begins work with high school drivers education, teaching thousands of teachers and millions of young drivers. In 1957, nNetwork television advertising is launched by sponsoring "Playhouse 90." Ed Reimers, an actor, becomes the Allstate television spokesperson for 22 years. On September 3, an Illinois couple buys the first Allstate Life Insurance policy.

Allstate establishes a catastrophe plan in 1959 that introduces a CAT TEAM now able to help policyholders with catastrophe-related claims. Property-liability written premium is $438.6 million with 5.3 million policyholders and 14,633 employees. Allstate moves its home office to Northbrook, Illinois.

Allstate Enterprises is established in 1960, offering auto, boat and RV financing, savings and loans, mortgage banking and mutual fund management. In 1961, Allstate Motor Club, the first truly national service of its kind, is formed. By 1963, Allstate Life Insurance Company reaches $1 billion insurance in force, growing faster than any previous company.

After 11 years of successful operations in Canada, Allstate forms Allstate Insurance Company of Canada and Allstate Life Insurance Company of Canada in 1964 (Compagnie D'Assurance, Allstate du Canada). In 1966, Allstate forms its own research and planning center to help research markets and customer expectations. Allstate begins working with the government and automakers on auto passenger safety, including seat belts and airbags in 1968. Allstate offers a Business Umbrella package, providing total insurance protection for commercial businesses.

In 1969, property liability written premium is $1.47 billion with 11.4 million policies in force and more than 30,000 employees. Allstate looks at doing business internationally and takes a strong stance on consumer safety. In 1970, Allstate begins 40 awareness programs encouraging auto makers to produce tougher cars including sturdier bumpers of a uniform height. In 1974, Allstate offers greater flexibility by serving customers considered high risk through the formation of the Allstate Indemnity Company. By 1975, Allstate enters the Japanese market (life insurance) through a joint venture with Sears and Seibu Retail.

In 1976, The "Helping Hands Program" is organized and mobilizes over 75 percent of Allstate employees to volunteer their time and talents working on community causes. Tech-Cor is started for technical research and training of auto/home repairs. It also handles a great deal of salvage and reclamation for Allstate. In 1978, The Northbrook Life Insurance Company and Northbrook Property and Casualty Insurance Company are formed, writing insurance through independent brokers for small and medium-sized businesses.

In 1979, property liability for Allstate written premium is $4.99 billion with 18.3 million policies in force and almost 40,000 employees. By the end of 1980, Allstate has grown dramatically, including 31 regional offices, 219 claim-service offices, 687 auto-inspection stations and 2,720 sales/service centers.

Allstate becomes a part of the Sears Financial Network in 1982: a one-stop financial services concept that features Allstate, Coldwell Banker Realty and Dean Witter Financial Brokers under one roof at Sears stores. Allstate announces a National Urban Policy and becomes full partners with Neighborhood Housing Services (NHS) in several cities.

By 1983 year-end, Allstate employs the industry's largest claim staff – more than 12,500 strong. A new flexible type of life insurance policy is offered called "Universal Life," providing savings and investment opportunities. In 1984, Allstate introduces the Neighborhood Office Agent (NOA) to make agents more accessible to their customers.

In 1989, Hurricane Hugo – the largest catastrophe to date – sets the standard for CAT losses costing the insurance industry $4.2 billion. Property-liability written premium is $13.5 billion with 27.2 million policies in force and 55,789 employees.

In 1990, The Neighborhood Exclusive Agent (NEA) contract is available to agents, giving them the opportunity to be independent contractors for Allstate, managing their own small businesses. Oakland Hills, Calif., fires cost the insurance industry $1.63 billion in 1991. In 1992, Hurricane Andrew hits Florida, costing the insurance industry $16 billion. This single event makes the insurance industry rethink the way it writes business in risk-prone areas.

Allstate becomes the largest publicly held insurance company when Sears sells 19.8 percent ownership of Allstate in 1993. It was the largest initial public offering (IPO) in history for a U.S. company. In 1994, tThe Northridge, Calif., earthquake rocks the insurance industry. From the $10 billion industry loss, Allstate pays more than $1.5 billion in claims. Allstate creates a strategic plan and begins to focus on what it does best.

June 30, 1995 Allstate becomes a totally independent company when Sears spins off the remaining 80 percent of Allstate to Sears shareholders. In 1996, Allstate launches its corporate web site-www.Allstate.com-with product and service information, insurance topics and an interactive mapping system so consumers can find agent locations. In 1997, Allstate's international strategy takes shape primarily in the top-ten markets. Auto markets, beginning with Canada and Germany, and in the emerging life markets of Asia, beginning with South Korea and Indonesia.

In 1998, The Allstate Federal Savings Bank is formed to help position Allstate competitively in the financial services arena. In 1999, Allstate expands its market reach through the acquisition of CNA Personal Insurance (now Encompass), American Heritage Life Investment Corporation and an alliance with Putnam Investments. "The Good Hands SM Network" is announced, a full integrated system that combines the power and convenience of direct telephone and Internet sales with the professionalism and expertise of Allstate agencies.

In May 2000, "The Good Hands SM Network" goes live in Oregon. Customers are able to purchase auto insurance on the Internet, at Customer Call Centers or through an agent. Allstate announces a first of its kind alliance with The Home Depot to make insurance repairs available to its policyholders with quality materials from The Home Depot stores. "The Good Hands SM Network" is launched in Louisiana and Colorado. In September of 2000, "The Good Hands Network" model is launched in Arizona, Illinois, Missouri and Ohio. In October 2000, Nearly one of every five Allstate exclusive agents have earned the "Personal Financial Representative" title after passing securities license exams and completing an extensive Allstate training curriculum. It's estimated that half of Allstate's agency force will be Personal Financial Representatives by 2002. CNA Personal Insurance changes its name to Encompass Insurance.

In November 2000, Allstate Life becomes Allstate Financial. The name reflects an expansion of traditional life insurance products to include savings and investment products. The Good Hands Network model is launched in Alabama, Georgia, Maryland, and Virginia. In December 2000, Working Woman names Allstate top company for Executive Women. "The Good Hands SM Network" model is launched in Florida, Indiana, Michigan and Tennessee. Allstate's top-ranked slogan, "You're in Good Hands" celebrates 50th Anniversary.

In May 2001, Allstate acquires Sterling Collision Centers Inc., a leader in the auto body repair industry. The Allstate goal is to improve the customer experience with a coordinated repair process - streamlining the claim-handling and restoration processes to eliminate redundancies and return vehicles faster to customers. In June 2001, The independent agency market organization is renamed Ivantage Group, which includes two brands - Encompass SM and Deerbrook ®. In July 2001, Allstate announces that it will be the Official Home and Auto Insurance Sponsor of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City and the 2002 and 2004 U.S. Olympic Teams. September 11, 2001 shocks and saddens the country - and brings the Allstate family closer together. In the wake of 9/11, Allstate employees and agencies responded unconditionally. Agencies in and near the World Trade Center aided and comforted victims. Employees reach out to customers with claims, by offering generous doses of compassion and helping them get back on their feet. Helping Hands volunteers across the country held blood drives, raised money and collected supplies. The Allstate Foundation made a sizeable contribution to help families of fallen firefighters and police officers.

In April 2002, The Insurance Information Institute (III) announces that 2001 was a year that will live in "insurance infamy," noting that it was the worst year in the history of the property and casualty insurance industry. Allstate launches the Treasury-Linked fixed annuity, the first truly identical cross-channel product in agency, bank and Lincoln Benefit Life channels. In December 2002, cContinuing to execute its strategy to become broader in financial services, by year-end nearly 7,000 personal financial representatives (PFRs) are licensed to sell a broad range of financial services and products; more than half of Allstate exclusive agencies hold a PFR designation; and Allstate exclusive agencies issue more than $1.6 billion in new premiums and deposits - a total greater than 1999, 2000 and 2001 combined.

In June 2003, Allstate Workplace Division (a business unit of the Allstate Financial Group) offers a critical illness insurance product that, instead of paying for one covered illness upon diagnosis, allows the insured to use the policy for more than one critical illness. In July 2003, Through a $40,000 grant to the I-CAR Education Foundation, Allstate funds auto body repair training at collision repair training schools around the country. The I-CAR Education Foundation is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving the quality of entry-level employees for the collision industry. In November 2003, in the wake of the worst wildfires in Southern California history, The Allstate Foundation joins The California Community Foundation to establish a $1 million fund to aid in recovery and rebuilding efforts. December 2003, aAs part of its ongoing efforts to fight fraud in the insurance industry, Allstate, Encompass Insurance and Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company file the largest no-fault insurance fraud lawsuit in New York history. The lawsuit targets an insurance fraud scam involving 74 defendants and thousands of no-fault claims.

In Janurary 2004, Allstate expands the Web presence of its 11,000 exclusive agents by creating individual agency Web sites that provide local auto, home and financial services product information, insurance quoting capabilities and 24-hour customer service features. In February 2004, Allstate announces an agreement to become the Official Home and Auto Insurance sponsor for USA Basketball and its Athens-bound 2004 U.S. men's and women's basketball teams. Allstate and USA Basketball also announce plans to host a series of 10 youth basketball clinics at select Boys & Girls Clubs. In March 2004, The United States Olympic Committee and Allstate announce the return of the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame Presented by Allstate, which had been inactive since 1992. The Class of 2004 is announced during a special induction ceremony on July 1. In July 2004, In recognition of their service to our country during time of war, Allstate begins to relax its automobile insurance underwriting guidelines for U.S. servicemen and women returning from military deployment in Iraq and Afghanistan. This means that auto insurance applications from U.S. military personnel whose auto insurance policies lapsed solely due to their active duty deployment in Iraq or Afghanistan will be treated as if auto insurance coverage had been continuous during their overseas deployment.

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