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First created to serve merchants in Buffalo, New York, founder Urban F. Jehle joined with J. Roger Young who had previous experience in insurance, local attorney, Owen B. Augspurger and civil engineer Clifford W. Brow, and began Merchants Mutual Liability Company (Merchants Insurance Group) on March 5, 1918. The first focus for the group was to offer protection for delivery vehicles.
Today, the vision of Merchants Insurance Group is to provide independent agents the most trusted property and casualty insurance available serving the needs of the customer. Through strong relationships, trust, accessibility and stability, Merchants Insurance placed their focus on the customer and independent agent satisfaction, striving to provide quality and financially secure products. The company's 5 core values include Integrity, Respect, Loyalty, Teamwork and the aspiration to improve.
Over the years, Merchant Insurance Group developed the company into two main directions: Personal lines and Commercial Lines. The personal would focus its products on Homeowners, Personal Auto, and Personal Umbrella Insurance. Maintaining the early merchant devoted roots, the commercial lines cover business owners, auto repair and collision repair, contractors and handyman, commercial package, golf course, restaurant, commercial auto, commercial umbrella and workman's compensation insurance.
Providing vehicle coverage, Merchants car insurance offers a "POP" policy or "Package of Protection." Included in this "POP" are services for towing and labor, transportation expenses, emergency lodging and emergency first aid expenses, as well as rental car reimbursement. Merchants car insurance also provides a member discount available to both Merchants policyholders when involved in the same collision. In the event that more than one driver insured by Merchants auto insurance is involved in the same collision, Merchants will waive both deductibles for comprehensive and collision for both vehicles.
Merchants insurance offers a safety discount for features such as daytime running lights, anti-lock, passenger safety features (airbags) and car alarms. Another way to save with Merchants auto insurance is to complete a defensive driving course. Qualifying policyholders may also receive the Multiple Vehicle/Car discount, and the Account Credit (which is available to members who have both homeowners and personal auto coverage). The account credit allows savings on both home and auto policies.
Coverage is varied state-to-state, not every discount and service may be available. States of coverage include New York, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont. Smaller in size than many other competitors, Merchants Insurance Group received the notable rating of A- (Excellent), by the A.M Best for its entire primary (Merchants Insurance Group) and sub-companies.