Founders Auto Insurance Review: Ratings and Quotes (2024)

Founders offers coverage to high-risk drivers, but its auto insurance is only available in four states.

Nick Dauk
Written byNick Dauk
Nick Dauk
Nick Dauk
  • 6+ years writing about insurance, travel, and personal finances

  • Contributor to brands like Credible

In addition to insurance, Nick specializes in writing about business, entrepreneurship, personal finance, and travel. He’s been featured in myriad web publications, including Fox Business.

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Chris Schafer
Edited byChris Schafer
Chris Schafer
Chris SchaferSenior Editor
  • 15+ years in content creation

  • 7+ years in business and financial services content

Chris is a seasoned writer/editor with past experience across myriad industries, including insurance, SAS, finance, Medicare, logistics, marketing/advertising, and many more.

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Updated June 8, 2023

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Founders Insurance Company is an Illinois-based insurer and member company of the Utica National Insurance Group. Founders was established in 1901, but the company has only provided auto policies since the 1990s.

Founders isn’t a nationwide company, so it lacks incentives like the wide discount range of some of its competitors. However, the insurer can facilitate quotes and policies for eligible high-risk drivers in select states.

Quick Facts
  • The company offers few, yet generally accessible, discounts for auto policies.

  • Founders can facilitate SR-22 forms for non-vehicle-owning drivers.

  • Founders limits its auto coverage to Ohio, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Indiana.

What is Founders auto insurance?

Founders Insurance Company was originally known as Mutual Fire Insurance Company and specialized in offering fire coverage. The company then merged with Founders Mutual Insurance Company and began selling liquor liability coverage in the 1950s before expanding coverage in later years and including auto coverage in the 1990s.

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How does Founders auto insurance work?

Founders Insurance Company caters to the nonstandard insurance market and focuses on drivers who may find it difficult to get insurance elsewhere. This can include drivers with international licenses, those who require SR-22 filings, and drivers who don’t have positive driving histories or credit scores.

Founders pros and cons

  • Solid financial strength

  • SR-22 form filing available

  • Offers accessible discounts

  • Quotes only available through independent agents

  • Limited available coverage and range options

  • Poor customer reviews on Better Business Bureau (BBB) website

Connecting with a Founders agent

Founders has local agents operating in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, and Wisconsin. To learn more about your coverage options with Founders, you can use its agent locator to find an agent near you in these four states.

Founders car insurance coverage

While not explicitly stated on its website, Founders offers at least the minimum liability coverage required by state law, which includes bodily injury and property damage, as well as personal injury protection (PIP) or uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.

Founders aims to provide low-cost minimum insurance, but it also has a few optional coverages available:

  • SR-22 filing: An SR-22 filing is required by court order when a driver is convicted of a DUI or by law needs to show proof of financial responsibility. Not every insurer will file an SR-22, but Founders does provide this service.

  • Accidental death: Founders provides a $5,000 policy limit if the policyholder dies in an accident in their own car.

  • Legal expense: This coverage provides legal expense reimbursement when a driver defends moving violation citations. This is a helpful option for high-risk drivers who occasionally receive traffic citations.

Founders auto insurance also offers high-risk drivers an opportunity to secure minimum-liability insurance. But with limited optional coverages, Founders might not have the extent of coverage you desire.

Founders car insurance cost by state

Founders offers car insurance in Ohio, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Indiana. Although it might offer identical policies in any of these states, drivers shouldn’t expect to receive exactly the same quote for such policies. That’s because a number of factors influence how much a premium is in each state.

For example, a comprehensive policy can cover theft and vandalism, but the threat of theft in a given area can influence premiums in that area.

Age and driving history also play a role in insurance rates. Safe drivers — specifically those with clean records — tend to be offered lower rates than drivers who are considered high-risk. In many cases, a driver with a speeding ticket, DUI, or at-fault accident is considered a high-risk driver.

Rate increases may vary based on the severity of the infraction; for instance, getting a minor speeding ticket will likely result in a lower rate increase than being convicted of a DUI. But driving habits aren’t the only factor insurers assess for risk.

Younger drivers also tend to have more expensive monthly premiums than older drivers due to their inexperience. Teens are more likely to be involved in a fatal car accident than drivers older than 20. In a similar context, drivers older than 70 may also be considered riskier drivers because of their slower reaction times and visual impairments due to aging, which may increase the likelihood of an accident.

Learn More: Vehicle Inspection Requirements by State

Learn More: Vehicle Inspection Requirements by State

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How to get a Founders car insurance quote

Because Founders doesn’t offer car insurance in every state and only uses independent insurance agents, you’ll need to take a few extra steps to secure a quote:

  1. Find an agent in your area. Go on Founders’ website and enter your city, state, and ZIP code to find an agent in your area.

  2. Browse a list of available agents near your address. If there are agents nearby, a list will populate. If no agents service your area, the website won’t populate a list.

  3. Contact an agent. Email, phone, fax, and addresses are all listed for each agent. Contact an agent to get a quote.

Founders car insurance discounts

Discounts can reduce the overall cost of a police policy; some are recurring, while you might earn others over time.

Founders offers the following auto insurance discounts:

  • Multi-car discount: A multi-car discount offers savings for policyholders who have more than one vehicle insured with the same insurer.

  • Transfer discount: A transfer discount is typically a discount that an insurer will offer to drivers who switch their coverage from a competitor to the insurer.

  • Homeowner discount: A homeowner discount typically provides savings to policyholders named on the deed of their home. However, homeowner discounts are also available for people who bundle their homeowners insurance and auto insurance.

  • Renewal discount: Renewal discounts are given to current policyholders who renew their policies through the insurer.

  • Nonowner discount: A nonowner policy provides coverage to drivers who don’t have regular use for a vehicle, such as accidental death benefit and legal expense coverage. Drivers can get discounts for electronic SR-22 filings, and this discount program is a benefit for drivers who need limited and flexible coverage.

Founders Insurance bundling options

Founders offers more than just personal auto insurance, which can be an advantage for drivers who need additional insurance policies and want to save as much money as possible.

It also provides:

  • Renters insurance: This includes coverage options for renters of apartments, condos, houses, and townhomes, including medical payment and personal liability coverages.

  • Homeowners insurance: Coverage options for homeowners in Illinois include HO-3, HO-6, and HO-8 policies.

  • Liquor liability insurance: Coverage options are available only for special events of one-to-five days of up to 5,000 people, such as wedding receptions, fairs, and farmers markets.

  • Commercial auto insurance: This includes coverage options for 100 classes of commercial automobiles weighing 16,000 pounds or less and traveling within a 200-mile radius. 

Learn More: The Insurify Guide to Car Insurance Discounts

Learn More: The Insurify Guide to Car Insurance Discounts

Founders insurance reviews and ratings

Every driver’s experience will be unique, though current and former Founders policyholders haven’t left stellar reviews across multiple sites.

Founders’ star ratings are low:

  • Better Business Bureau: 1.02/5[1]

  • Yelp: 1/5[2]

Founders customer reviews

Many driver complaints appear on the Better Business Bureau website. However, a significant number are from drivers who were hit by a Founders policyholder. They claim the insurer is difficult to get in contact with and you must wait weeks for replies.

Yelp features negative reviews with the same occurrences. The few positive reviews left by Yelp users are five years old or older and generally discuss Founders providing top-notch assistance when the policyholder was not at fault for an accident.

Founders ratings

While your experience will be unique, it’s important to check an insurer’s independent ratings prior to activating a policy. These third-party companies are designed to assess and rate insurers based on specific objectives, such as how it interacts with customers or how well-equipped the company is to pay out claims.

  • A.M. Best: Founders has an A.M. Best rating of A, which is the third-highest rating. It generally means that the insurer is in an excellent position to cover its ongoing financial obligations, which include paying out claims.[3]

  • Better Business Bureau: Founders is not BBB accredited. It has an A+ rating and a 1.02/5 star rating. The BBB provides an opinion of how well Founders interacts with customer complaints.[1]

  • NAIC Complaint Index: Founders has a 6.86 on the NAIC Complaint Index. The general expected rating on the Index is 1.00, which means Founders has received a number of claims that’s significantly higher than expected for a company of its size.[4]

Founders vs. other insurance companies

As a consumer, you have dozens of options when it comes to choosing an insurance company. From national names to online-only insurers and independent agents, the car insurance market is highly saturated. You can take advantage of this competition by comparison shopping — not only for policy rates, but also for ratings from respected organizations.

Ratings don’t guarantee the experience you’ll have, but it’s a good indication of the average result policyholders experience. By comparing factors like overall service offerings, claim payout potential, and customer satisfaction scores, you can identify an insurer who ranks highest in the categories that you believe are most important.

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Founders vs. Allstate

Like Founders, Allstate’s history dates back over 90 years, though it has offered car insurance products longer than Founders. Allstate is a traditional car insurance company that also offers a pay-per-mile policy through Milewise. It has an A.M. Best rating of A+, which demonstrates a financial stability greater than Founders.

Allstate offers auto insurance rates at an average of $146 per month. It offers more coverage options, discounts, and serves more states than Founders. Like Founders, Allstate also offers SR-22 insurance. Allstate has a higher J.D. Power score than other competitors, but a similar star-rating to Founders via the BBB.[5]

Drivers who want more coverage and discount options may want to choose Allstate over Founders because Founders doesn’t offer coverages like comprehensive and collision.

Founders vs. Farmers

Farmers is another traditional insurer that provides a range of coverage options and discounts that exceed Founders. Established in 1928, Farmers now provides multiple types of insurance products, including auto, home, life, business, and more.

Farmers also has an A rating from A.M. Best, meaning it has the same financial strength as Founders. Both insurers can provide SR-22 filings, though Farmers has a wider range of states served.

Farmers average monthly quote for car insurance is $218, making it the most expensive when compared to other competitors like Allstate and Travelers, according to Insurify data. With these higher rates, drivers may want to choose Founders instead, if securing low-cost, minimum-liability insurance is their goal.

However, Farmers offers more coverage options, like rideshare and collectible auto. A high-risk driver nearing the end of their SR-22 filing may also want to consider Farmers, if it makes sense for their occupation and interests.

Founders vs. Travelers

Travelers has a history in the insurance industry dating back to 1864 and issued its first auto policy in 1897. Travelers is a traditional insurance company that offers a range of insurance products for individuals and businesses.

Travelers has an A++ rating, the highest through A.M. Best, granting it exceptionally reliable financial strength. Unfortunately, it also has a comparatively low J.D. Power score for customer satisfaction, a drawback that Founders also has.

The average monthly rate for a Travelers auto insurance policy is $131 for liability-only coverage, according to Insurify data. This is a cheaper option when compared to competitors like Allstate and Farmers.

Travelers may also be a better fit for high-risk drivers who want more robust coverage options alongside their SR-22 filing. Travelers only lists 12 discount options, which is more than Founders but not as diverse as some competitors.

How to file an auto insurance claim with Founders

If you’re involved in an accident, you’ll need to notify your insurance company to assess how your policy will cover any damages or injuries. This claims process will determine how much your policy will pay out to you or the person/property you hit.

You can follow these steps to file a claim with Founders:

  1. Call for roadside assistance. Depending on the accident, you should call a police officer, whether or not you’re at-fault, to ensure the event is on record.

  2. Contact your agent. Since independent agents provide Founders insurance products, you should notify your agent as soon as possible that you were involved in an accident. Your agent may then advise you of certain steps you should take before, during, and after the claims process.

  3. File a claim online. You can report a claim on the Founders website, including instances where you’re hit by a driver insured by Founders. Enter the information requested, including the Founders policy number, to initiate the claims process.

Founders insurance FAQs

If you’re considering getting car insurance coverage through Founders, here’s some additional information that may help.

  • Is Founders legitimate?

    Yes. Founders Insurance Company is a legitimate insurer. The company was established initially in 1901 and began selling auto insurance products in the 1990s. It has excellent ratings with companies like A.M. Best and writes policies in 22 states.

  • Is Founders car insurance worth it?

    Founders car insurance may be worth it for high-risk drivers who need a low-cost, minimum liability coverage policy and can’t secure it through another insurer. SR-22 filings and legal expense reimbursement are unique optional coverages available that cater to high-risk drivers. But Founders doesn’t offer the wide range of optional coverages and discounts that some competitors do.

  • Who owns Founders Insurance?

    Founders Insurance Company is owned by Utica National Insurance Group. It was previously purchased by the Lutz family in 1982 from Marvin E. Pritikin, who originally merged Mutual Fire Insurance Company with Founders Mutual Insurance Company in the 1960s.

  • Who should get Founders insurance?

    Founders personal auto insurance can be a fit for most drivers in the states that it serves. However, Founders may be best for high-risk or new drivers, including those who need SR-22 filings. Founders doesn’t require a credit check or prior insurance, accepts international and foreign licenses, and accepts drivers with prior losses.

  • Is Founders good at paying claims?

    Yes. Founders Insurance Company has an A rating through A.M. Best. An A rating represents A.M. Best’s belief that Founders has an excellent ability to meet its ongoing insurance obligations, including paying claims. Though it’s not the highest rating possible, an A is a very high score, set only below an A+ and an A++ score.


  1. Better Business Bureau. "Founders."
  2. Yelp. "Founders."
  3. A.M. Best. "Founders Insurance Company."
  4. National Association of Insurance Commissioners. "Results by Complaint Index."
  5. Better Business Bureau. "AllState."
Nick Dauk
Nick Dauk

Nick Dauk is a freelance writer specializing in business, entrepreneurship, personal finance, and travel. His work has been featured in Fox Business, BBC, The Edge, Business Insider, and Bisnow. Nick is a first-generation college graduate, having majored in Interdisciplinary Studies at the University of Central Florida. His eclectic coursework, combined with previous managerial roles in the retail and broadcast television industries, have helped him develop an interdisciplinary approach to writing.

For nearly a decade, Nick has created content for mom-and-pop businesses and global corporations. As a travel writer, his global adventures have also been featured on Inside Hook, Houston Chronicle, Culture Trip, and Matador. When he's not traveling, Nick can be found in Orlando spending time with his wife and toddler.

Chris Schafer
Edited byChris SchaferSenior Editor
Chris Schafer
Chris SchaferSenior Editor
  • 15+ years in content creation

  • 7+ years in business and financial services content

Chris is a seasoned writer/editor with past experience across myriad industries, including insurance, SAS, finance, Medicare, logistics, marketing/advertising, and many more.

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