National Interstate Insurance Review & Complaints: Transportation Insurance

National Interstate Insurance specializes in commercial transportation insurance and was given an A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau. We find in our National Interstate Insurance review that this company is competitive if you're looking for commercial auto insurance.

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Eric Stauffer is a former insurance agent and banker turned consumer advocate. His priority is to help educate individuals and families about the different types of insurance they need, and assist them in finding the best place to get it.

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Written by Eric Stauffer
Founder & Former Insurance Agent Eric Stauffer

Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insuranc...

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Reviewed by Leslie Kasperowicz
Farmers CSR for 4 Years Leslie Kasperowicz

UPDATED: Mar 4, 2022

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National Interstate Insurance

Financial Strength

Ohio-based National Interstate is a specialty property and casualty insurer writing mainly commercial products. They operate in several states through a group of companies under their holding company umbrella.

What is National Interstate Insurance?

National Interstate Insurance was founded in 1989 in Richfield, Ohio. They operate as a wholly-owned subsidiary of National Interstate Corporation, which also owns Vanliner Insurance Company. Through subsidiaries and affiliates, National Interstate operates in Ohio, Missouri, Hawaii, and Alaska.

The product focus is on the commercial transportation industry, with some operations also offering standard commercial coverage. Products are sold through independent agents as well as affiliated agencies. Through partner companies, they provide a comprehensive range of products for passenger transportation, moving and storage, truck transportation, RV coverage, and more.

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What insurance products are offered?

The product lineup is specialized, with custom insurance programs available for much of the transportation industry. They also have some general commercial products in specific areas, and they provide Alternative Risk Transfer (ART) plans as well.

Transportation Products

The company’s transportation insurance policies cover a variety of fleet and individual transportation businesses. These include:

  • Trucking companies
  • Two truck fleets
  • Community Medical Transport companies
  • Passenger Transport companies including charter buses, limousines, transit fleets, and more
  • LP Operators
  • Waste operations, including residential waste, construction and demolition debris removal, recycling, and non-hazardous industrial waste
  • Ambulance companies

General Commercial

General commercial package policies are available in Hawaii and in Alaska. These policies include commercial liability, business property, and other optional coverage such as commercial auto.

Currently, this type of policy is not offered in any other states.

Alternative Risk Transfer (ART)

ART plans are available for transportation companies that wish to approach their insurance needs a little differently.

These programs are essentially self-insurance; companies pay into a fund to handle claims and can be reimbursed for unused funds at the end of the year or even earn investment income, depending on how the company performs that year.

Other Products

Also available are crane, rigging, and specialized carriers’ products as well as the option to purchase cyber liability.

RV insurance coverage is available through a partnership with Explorer RV Insurance Agency.

The cost of RV insurance varies greatly depending on many factors. This makes predicting the exact amount of money spent on RV insurance very hard.

Are the casualty insurance company’s rates reasonable?

Rates are not available for this company, and that is just what we would expect given the specialty and commercial nature of the products they sell. These types of products require a detailed rating process that cannot be handled via an online quote.

Again, because this company’s products are specialized, they can only be compared to other companies writing the same specialty products in terms of rates.

How is claim processing?

The insurer offers traditional insurance online claims reporting, which is unusual for a specialty company like this one.

They also have a 24/7 toll-free line for the claims department, with a different line for Hawaii and Alaska. Claims can also be submitted via fax – again these numbers differ for Alaska and Hawaii versus the contiguous states.

There is not a lot of claims information, but that is common for this type of company. They do make it easy to find the right contact information and offer several options for filing, after which their representatives will assist with any questions and get the insured through the process.

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Does the company have positive ratings and consumer reviews?

The insurer has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and there have been only three complaints on file in the past three years, all of which were closed more than twelve months prior to this review.

There are 16 reviews on Google with an overall 4.4-star rating. This is a pretty high rating, but the content of the reviews isn’t particularly helpful. Some appear to be from people who work for the company and think it has a stressful environment, and only one – the single negative review – actually describes a customer service experience.

We found little else in the way of reviews for this company, which is not unusual for a specialty insurer.

What’s the bottom line?

If you are in the market for any of the specialty policies offered by the National Interstate insurance company in the United States, they are likely worth comparing, especially given the specific nature of the coverage they write. There’s little to go on in terms of recommending this company, but no red flags to report, either.

National Interstate offers risk financing solutions tailored to meet a wide range of transportation needs in all 50 states.

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