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Bristol West Auto Insurance Review

Thursday, 31 October 2013 23:11

Bristol West Holdings is based out of Davie, Florida and currently specializes in auto insurance policies for both standard and non-standard drivers. Bristol West sells its products through insurance agents and offers multiple coverage options. The company focuses on offering high quality customer support through its agent based customer support system. However there have been numerous complaints online regarding claims related issues, trouble with medical payments, and other issues. As a result, Bristol West may not be the best car insurance option to consider unless a person has been denied from other insurers.

Company Background Information

Bristol West was founded in Florida in 1973 and has a license to offer insurance to 41 states. The company has focused its efforts on marketing liability only insurance to non-standard drivers, but there are a variety of insurance options available. It was acquired by Farmer’s Insurance Group in 2007 and is now one of Farmer’s main contributors to auto insurance sales. Bristol West currently has a large network of nearly 10,000 independent agents who sell their insurance throughout the United States. A.M. Best gives the company an A rating for a stable financial outlook and an “a” long term credit rating.

Pros of Bristol West Car Insurance

  • High approval rate for non-standard (high risk) drivers
  • Flexible payment options

Cons of Bristol West Car Insurance

  • Customers report many difficulties with claims
  • High premium rates
  • May have cancellation fees on some policies


The company’s website is fairly straightforward with options for online policy management, online payment options, and online claim filing. State by state information is listed about minimum liability insurance and specific products offered by Bristol West. Customers can enroll in direct debit easily or cancel it from the website. Insurance agents can also view information about the different products Bristol West offers in each state.


A variety of discounts are offered including vehicle equipment discounts for air bags, anti-lock brakes, and anti-theft devices. Drivers can receive discounts if they have had prior insurance, own a home, have completed an adult driving course, and can prove financial responsibility. There are also discounts available for purchasing multiple policies with Bristol West, and the company mentions on their website that discounts are subject to underwriting.

Types of Insurance Offered

Bristol West primarily sells liability coverage but also offers comprehensive and collision coverage, coverage for medical payments, property damage coverage, uninsured motorist coverage, and towing reimbursement. Bodily injury coverage from Bristol West covers each state’s minimum liability requirements per accident and includes defense in the case of a law suit. Property damage liability is also included in their liability policies at each state’s minimum level. Extra comprehensive coverage can be purchased that can pay for damages from natural disasters such as water, hail, and wind or from vandalism related damage.

Customer Reviews

There are a number of negative reviews of Bristol West online resulting from some negative experiences that current or prior customers have had with them. Many customers have complained of difficulties getting claims processed quickly, with delays on payments, or payments being less than needed for auto repairs or medical claims. Customers have also complained of cancellation fees and difficulties cancelling their policies. There are also reports of unexpected increases in premiums.

Bristol West


If you are a high risk or non-standard driver you may have difficulties getting insurance, and Bristol West and similar companies offer a way for you to obtain auto insurance, but you should expect higher than average premium costs. The customer complaints regarding Bristol West should be taken into consideration by prospective customers, and if you are shopping for high risk or normal risk insurance now, you can get quotes from several different providers by typing your zip code in the form on this page.

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