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Donegal Insurance Group Summary
The Donegal and Conoy Mutual Fire Insurance Company was founded in Marietta, Pennsylvania in 1889. In 1949, the name was changed to Donegal Mutual Insurance Company, and in the 1950s they expanded from fire insurance to add auto insurance as well.
In the following decades, the company purchased a number of other insurance companies and expanded into several other states including Maryland, Delaware, and Virginia. In 1986, a holding company was formed under the name Donegal Group, Inc., and the company went public.
In recent decades the company has expanded services into several other states through further acquisitions and now offers a full range of products in personal and commercial lines. The company’s headquarters remain in Marietta, Pennsylvania.
The Donegal Insurance group of companies includes:
- Donegal Mutual Insurance Company
- Atlantic States Insurance Company
- Le Mars Insurance Company
- Michigan Insurance Company
- The Peninsula Insurance Company
- Peninsula Indemnity Company
- Sheboygan Falls Insurance Company
- Southern Insurance Company of Virginia
- Southern Mutual Insurance Company
Donegal Insurance policies are sold through a network of independent agents, and product offerings vary by state.
Donegal Insurance has a large range of products available, from personal lines basics to complex commercial insurance needs, to even farm insurance. Policies may be offered by one of the subsidiaries of the group depending on the state, and not all products are available in all states.
Donegal began as a fire insurance company and continues that tradition offering full coverage homeowner’s insurance policies that provide for repair or replacement of the dwelling itself, personal property coverage, and liability protection for the homeowner. Policies include a variety of standard features as well as options including identity theft coverage and high-value items coverage.
Donegal Insurance also writes basic dwelling fire coverage policies for rental properties or owner-occupied properties that do not qualify for a standard homeowner’s policy.
Donegal writes auto policies with all of the minimum required coverage for the state of residence as well as standard options such as collision, comprehensive, towing and labor, and rental reimbursement.
Added features include:
- Accident forgiveness
- High thresholds for chargeable accidents
- Good student discounts
- Good driver discounts
Boat policies cover many types of watercraft for liability and damage both in and out of the water. A variety of options and add-ons are available to boat owners such as, Boater’s Emergency Towing & Labor, and boat Replacement Cost, to create a comprehensive package policy.
Donegal offers both personal and commercial umbrella insurance policies that provide added liability coverage to protect policyholders above and beyond the limits of the underlying policies.
Donegal writes a wide array of commercial insurance products, aimed at small and midsized businesses.
Available products include:
- Business Owner’s Policies (BOP)
- Contractor’s Insurance
- Commercial Auto
- Worker’s Compensation
- Errors & Omissions Coverage
- Employment Practices Liability
- Liquor Liability
The company also offers farm insurance products designed to meet the needs of farmers with a range of options to create a personalized policy. Products include a policy created especially for dairy farms as well as a farm umbrella insurance policy.
Donegal Insurance does not offer online quoting for premium comparison purposes. As a regional insurer, their premiums are most likely to be competitive with similar-sized insurance companies. In some states where both auto and home insurance are offered, discounts can help to reduce rates on both, making the company more competitive in those areas.
Donegal does offer a good range of discounts depending on the product to help bring rates down, specifically on their auto insurance products. They are a fairly large group for a regional insurer, which should help premiums, especially for those with good driving records and multiple policies.
The company has multiple methods of paying insurance bills, including by EFT, over the phone, online, or through an agent.
Donegal Insurance has a toll-free, 24 hour a day, 7 days per week claims service center available for filing of claims over the phone. Emergency claims receive a response within one hour, while non-emergency claims will receive a response the next business day.
There is an online claims reporting form that can be used to submit non-emergency claims. This system will result in a response within the same time frame as a non-emergency submission through the call center.
Auto glass-only claims are filed through a different service, EZGLASS, which will handle repair or replacement of glass. This can be done through a preferred vendor or through the glass repair shop of your choice.
Claims processing time varies based on the type of policy as well as the type of loss. The Donegal website provides some general information for each type of policy as to what should be done in the event of a loss.
Policyholders can contact the claims service center at any time for updates on the progress of their claim.
Donegal Mutual Insurance Company, the base company of the group, has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), although they are not accredited. There are 11 complaints against the company in the past 3 years. There are also five negative reviews left on the site regarding unsatisfied customers in the claims department. No government actions against the company have been reported.
Because Donegal is a group of companies and some policies may be written by a subsidiary, it is important to note that there may be complaints against any of those companies that do not appear in the BBB record under the Donegal name. Individual companies may have a very different reputation from that of the parent company.
There is currently only one complaint against Donegal Insurance Group on RipOffReport.com, which is really very impressive for a fairly large regional insurer.
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Donegal Insurance has a very long history in the insurance industry with a record of growth and expansion, making them a fairly safe bet as far as company stability. As a regional insurer, they may not be competitive with national companies in terms of premiums, especially for those with clean records and low-risk policies.
Donegal is a good choice for those who prefer a smaller, homegrown company to a major insurer, and their range of policy offerings makes them an easy choice for anyone who needs basic personal lines or commercial products under one banner.
For a list of companies that we recommend, visit our Best Insurance Companies page.