Items you will need
- State insurance office directory listings
- Yellow pages (hard copy or online)
- Insurance search engines
Finding the contact information for an old insurance company can be a real challenge. Companies change their names, move, merge, or simply go out of business. If the change occurred long ago, you can be faced with a very cold trail with few leads. However, following the steps below can make it easier to locate an old insurance company.
Gather all the information available. This includes any names for the insurance companies, any addresses, previous annual reports, etc. You will use this information to start your search.
Check the yellow page listings for any area(s) where the insurance company information is listed. If a webpage is listed for the company, check it out also.
Consult the state insurance department listings. These listings track current names, contact information, mergers and other changes for all insurers licensed within the state or jurisdiction. Look up the old name or other information for the insurance company.
Check out online search engines for insurance related organizations. A.M. Best compiles financial and other information about the insurance industry worldwide. The Insurance Information Institute has an online database organized by region and by insurance subspecialty. The National Associations of Insurance Commissioners allows searches by state.
The more information you have, the more likely your search will be successful. Sometimes even seemingly insignificant information can provide a breakthrough.
If all else fails, consider using a commercial search service. Submit all the information you have previously obtained to the search company.
Be careful not to confuse similar sounding names. They may be attached to entirely different companies.
While some searches are free, others are not. For searches which are not free, be clear about the charges upfront.