Encompass is a subsidiary of Allstate
Encompass has entered into an agreement with Attorney General Maura Healey’s Office in which it has agreed to pay for the correction of faulty repair work by unregistered body shops in Massachusetts. As outlined in the assurance of discontinuance filed in Suffolk Superior Court, Encompass Insurance Company has agreed to pay for its failure to verify a body shop’s certifications prior to repairs those shops made on Encompass policyholder vehicles. The insurer will also pay $25,000 to the Commonwealth.
The settlement also requires that Encompass maintain a regularly updated list of unregistered body shops and to train its staff on this issue and how to comply with the law.
Under Massachusetts law, all body shops conducting business in the state must be registered and compliant with certain safety and training standards. Unregistered body shops may be shut down or penalized by the Division of Standards. An insurer may directly pay a body shop that is registered body shop for repairs made pursuant to a policyholder’s collision and comprehensive coverage. Payments to unregistered shops are prohibited. The purpose of the law is to protect consumers who are unable to determine whether a repair shop has been properly registered and insured.
As a result of the settlement, Encompass will inspect all of its policyholder’s vehicles repaired at unregistered body shops. Any repairs that are determined to be faulty will be corrected and paid for by Encompass in a registered body shop.
The investigation into Encompass began after a consumer complaint was filed with the Attorney General’s Office. According to the AG’s office, a consumer brought her damaged vehicle to an unregistered body shop which ultimately did not make the necessary repairs to her car. Encompass, however, sent payment to the unregistered shop anyhow, paying it $4,500 directly for repairs that essentially left its policyholder with an unsafe motor vehicles. The insurer then refused to provide additional funds for the policyholder to have the car properly fixed at a registered shop.
As a result of the investigation and settlement, Encompass will be notifying policyholders who may have been affected by this issue.