Gainsco Auto Insurance Review 2022

Jan 5, 2022

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Our Take

2.0

NerdWallet rating 

The bottom line:

Owned by State Farm, Gainsco sells policies to high-risk drivers and can provide an SR-22 if you need one.

Gainsco Auto Insurance
GAINSCO
NAIC complaints
Far more than expected
Ease of use
Average
Discounts
Average set of discounts

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Provides coverage for high-risk drivers who may not be able to get sufficient insurance elsewhere.
  • Can provide an SR-22 form if needed.
  • Online quote available.

Cons

  • Far more than the expected number of auto insurance complaints to state regulators.
  • Website gives no coverage details.

Full Review

Headquartered in Dallas, Gainsco specializes in nonstandard auto insurance for high-risk drivers. It sells policies through comparison websites and a network of independent agents in the states it services.

Gainsco was acquired by State Farm, the largest auto insurer in the country, in late 2020. Although Gainsco will continue to operate separately, State Farm will eventually offer combined products.

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Gainsco auto insurance coverage

When you’re shopping for car insurance, it’s important to understand what car insurance coverage you want and what you’re required to buy. Most states require car insurance in order to drive a vehicle. Although minimum coverage requirements vary from state to state, they generally include liability insurance and uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage.

If you want extra protection, you may be interested in full coverage insurance. Full coverage isn’t a specific policy type; it's a combination of coverage types, like liability, collision and comprehensive insurance.

Check out the most common types of car insurance coverage below to see how they work:

Coverage type

What it pays for

Required?

Bodily injury and property damage liability

Costs for injuries, deaths or property damage from an accident you caused.

Typically required.

Uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage

Medical and property damage costs after an accident with a driver who has insufficient insurance or none at all.

Often required.

Collision coverage

Repair expenses from traffic-related accidents, regardless of who's at fault.

A car loan or lease may require it.

Comprehensive coverage

Repair costs from events outside of your control, including weather events, hitting an animal while driving, theft and vandalism.

A car loan or lease may require it.

Gainsco focuses on offering the minimum car insurance required by state. In addition to these typical types of coverage, it offers these options:

SR-22 form: Many states require that your insurer file an SR-22 form to prove you have the minimum amount of car insurance after a DUI or other serious offenses. Similarly, Florida and Virginia require an FR-44 form to prove you have sufficient coverage. Gainsco can file these forms on its customers’ behalf, unlike many companies.

Non-owner insurance: This gives you liability insurance if you don’t own a car. A non-owner policy can prevent you from being labeled as a high-risk driver due to a lapse in coverage if you're without a vehicle. Drivers who need an SR-22 form may also need this type of policy to get a driver’s license reinstated.

Auto insurance discounts

Gainsco’s car insurance discounts include:

  • Auto-pay discount.

  • Pay in full discount.

  • Discount if you own a home, condo, townhouse or mobile home.

  • Early signing discount for buying a policy at least three days before it goes into effect.

  • Multicar discount.

  • Loyalty discount.

  • Discount if you had auto insurance prior to Gainsco for at least six months, with no more than a 30-day lapse.

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Auto insurance buying guide

Before you compare car insurance companies, you’ll need to collect some basic information. This includes the driving history of everyone who will be on the policy, as well as facts about your car, such as safety features and annual mileage driven. You’ll also want to determine which types of coverage you need. For example, do you want only the bare minimum insurance that your state requires, or do you need more extensive coverage, such as gap insurance or rideshare coverage? Check that each company you’re considering has the options you want.

When comparing rates among insurers, make sure each is offering the same coverage limits and deductibles. You may not want to make your decision based on price alone. Look at how many consumer complaints each company has, as a high number of complaints could be a red flag about the quality of service you'll receive.

Depending on which company you choose, you may be able to buy insurance online, over the phone or through an agent. For more guidance, see how to get car insurance.

Complaints and customer satisfaction

Relative to its size, Gainsco had far more than the expected number of complaints about auto insurance to state regulators, according to three years’ worth of data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

More about Gainsco auto insurance 

Website: While Gainsco’s site has minimal coverage details, it does have a handy FAQ section and a glossary of insurance terms. As a policyholder, you can log in to make payments, view policy documents and print insurance ID cards. However, if you need to make changes to your policy — such as adding drivers or cars — you’ll need to contact your agent.

Mobile app: You can request a quote, make payments and file claims with Gainsco’s Android app. For Apple users, Gainsco has a “quick estimate” app to help with claims.

Methodology

Auto insurance ratings

NerdWallet’s auto insurance ratings reward companies for customer-first features and practices. Ratings are based on weighted averages of scores in several categories, including financial strength, consumer complaints and discounts. Our “ease of use” category looks at factors such as website transparency and how easy it is to file a claim. Using our editorial discretion, we also consider customer satisfaction surveys. These ratings are a guide, but we encourage you to shop around and compare several insurance quotes to find the best rate for you. NerdWallet does not receive compensation for any reviews. Read our editorial guidelines.

Insurer complaints

NerdWallet examined complaints received by state insurance regulators and reported to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners in 2018-2020. To assess how insurers compare to one another, the NAIC calculates a complaint index each year for each subsidiary, measuring its share of total complaints relative to its size, or share of total premiums in the industry. To evaluate a company’s complaint history, NerdWallet calculated a similar index for each insurer, weighted by market shares of each subsidiary, over the three-year period. Ratios are determined separately for auto, home (including renters and condo) and life insurance.

Frequently asked questions