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Consumer reporting agencies NOT Credit reporting agencies


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In 2017 my wife had a mini stroke which resulted in a roll over accident.  She suffered a broken back, ankle, leg, ribs and PTSD as a result.  Recently our auto insurance has notified us that they refuse to renew our policy based on a consumer reporting agency report that indicated the highway patrol believed my wife was drunk at the time of the accident because she couldn't talk or walk.  She went to court, it was determined that she suffered a stroke and the DUI was dropped.  She was NOT convicted of any impaired driving offenses. BTW.... My wife also suffered from head trauma which has resulted in loss of memory.  She is now fully disabled and only drives when necessary in a handicapped equipped vehicle.  She was unable to provide a breathalyzer as she had a collapsed lung upon removal from the vehicle.  However the report exists that she was impaired and they believe it was alcohol related...... Please help.  We are retired and can't afford this type of insurance.  My wife was 56 at the time of the accident with no priors on her record.


Now we are searching for a new auto insurance provider and want to locate one that does not pull reports from data miners (who often get things wrong) and will not use these consumer reporting agencies.  Can anyone advise me?


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My first concern has to do with the source of the information being reported by the "consumer reporting agency".  Is it possible that the DUI citation is still reported on your wife's state driver's record?  Many states will allow you to pull a copy of this record online; please request an online report, or mailed report (if necessary), to confirm that the DUI is no longer reflected.  (If it still shows on her record, then you want to work with the court involved to remove it before proceeding ... but definitely advise your insurer that you're working on clearing the entry.)


If the record is clear of the DUI citation, I would get back in contact with your insurer (there's usually a period during which you can dispute the cancellation).  Explain the circumstances and ask if there is a means by which you can document that the police report was erroneous in order to seek renewal of the policy.


Please note that whatever the source of the report your wife received, any other insurer that you quote might also pick up a report of this record (and I don't personally know of a list of insurers who don't seek such reporting).  So your best move may be to document that the citation was cleared by the court and the specific reason the citation was voided.


You might request a written statement to this effect from the court involved, specifically asking that they ensure they detail the full circumstances.  You can also ask if they can provide a transcript of the court appearance.


You should also compile medical records related to the incident.  Most likely the hospital to which she was admitted did a full blood analysis which would document a negligible blood alcohol level.


Finally, upon request, your insurer should provide the name of the consumer reporting agency that supplied the information to them.  You should follow up with the agency to learn what record they pulled.  If it's something other than a copy of the original citation issued on the accident scene, you might contact the record source to see if it's possible to expunge the information (providing the documentation compiled above as justification for the request).


I'm very sorry to hear of this very unfortunate accident and the awkward consequences.  My very heartfelt well-wishes to you and your dear wife.


--> One additional thought:  The suggestions above involve a fair amount of footwork.  If, for any reason, you're uncomfortable with doing this yourself (or you run into any difficulty), you may wish to seek out a lawyer for counsel and assistance.  The expense of a lawyer may be advised in any case, should you meet resistance when you explore getting the policy renewed with your current insurer -- if they won't renew the policy, you may find that your only option by which to secure insurance with any carrier is through an "assigned risk" policy that will be much more expensive.


You can talk to friends/family to seek out a reputable lawyer, or take advantage of one of the many strong lawyer referral services.  Two such services that come to mind (assuming they have offices in your area) are AARP "Legal Counsel for the Elderly" and your State Bar lawyer referral service.   Google "<name of your state> legal referral" to find more information and contact information.

Edited by hdporter
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We've pulled her driving record and there is no impaired driving conviction.  The so called "consumer reporting agency" got this info from the police report which was written at or just after the accident.  The underwriters refuse to take a second look at our renewal stating that anytime they see the word alcohol on any report, it is an automatic no go.  We may just have to remove her from all policies.  

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I am very sorry for your wife's problems and the difficulty of maintaining her on your auto insurance,HOWEVER, in the long run you may find it much more economical (and safer) to remove her from your auto insurance. Any driving she could do in the future, even in a handicapped equipped car would be a needless risk to her, others and to your financial well being. ANY accident, even if she were not at fault could result in permanent cancellation of your auto insurance and possible lawsuits against you for damages, even if she was not responsible.


Have her take LYFT or UBER when she needs to go somewhere. 

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5 hours ago, farmer1955 said:

We've pulled her driving record and there is no impaired driving conviction.  The so called "consumer reporting agency" got this info from the police report which was written at or just after the accident.  The underwriters refuse to take a second look at our renewal stating that anytime they see the word alcohol on any report, it is an automatic no go.  We may just have to remove her from all policies.  

Thanks for this added information; it's very helpful.  Please take careful note of "Why Chat"s response.  I pay particular heed to his take; his head's on straight.


In line with Why Chat's reply, it's important to seriously consider the degree to which your wife's state of health poses added risk to her safety and that of others.  It goes without saying that "driving is a privilege, not a right".


However, if your fair assessment is that with appropriate equipment, your wife is fully capable of driving and not at any appreciable added risk vs any other driver (when factoring possible physical and mental impediments), I'd hate for an erroneous report to put you in this position without recourse.


To that end, I'd advise a basic attorney consultation to help you better grasp where you stand legally (both with the insurer and to better define the liability considerations that should be understood in the event of a future accident).


If you believe that her continued driving is reasonable and prudent after such a discussion, my advice is to seek out an alternative dispute mechanism with your insurer's firm that would prompt them to review their finding and risk decision.  What I have in mind is a resource that might be called a "Ombudsman" or "Customer Advocate".  Or, possibly, it might entail contacting their "Executive Office".


An internet search hopefully will suggest an appropriate avenue.  If you're comfortable naming the insurer, I or someone else likely can find the information as well.








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Sorry to hear about your wife's situation and I will not opine on what to do about her driving....


However I will tell you where your insurance company is getting the information about her accident and that would be from a C.L.U.E. Report: https://personalreports.lexisnexis.com/fact_act_disclosure.jsp


More info here: https://clark.com/insurance/c-l-u-e-report-comprehensive-loss-underwriting/


The C.L.U.E. report was originally created by our "friends" at Equifax.  When Equifax spun-off their Business Information Services division to become ChoicePoint, C.L.U.E. was part of the deal.  Eventually ChoicePoint was acquired by Lexis Nexis.

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