Allstate Compensation Glitch Adds to Agent Displeasure

If there wasn’t already enough tension between Allstate agents and the company, a memo about a glitch in agents’ compensation may have added some more fuel to the fire.

On Feb. 10, agents were informed through an internal communication that there were problems with calculating their annual bonuses and incorrect information was reported on some agency owners’ tax forms.

The company says in a statement that it is re-running the report “with additional checks and balances to ensure accuracy.”

The company anticipates agents will have their bonus payments delayed until Feb. 23, but under contract, Allstate has until March 15 to make the payments.

Perhaps more annoying for an agent who has filed his or her taxes, information on Form 1099-MISC reported incorrect income information related to two incentive programs for some agency owners and processed income information to the wrong agent-identification numbers for other agency owners.

Allstate says it will issue corrected forms and pay for any amended returns upon the agent’s request. “We regret any confusion, inconvenience or anxiety these recent process errors may have caused amongst some of our agency owners,” the company says.

The issue affects 4,700 agency owners, out of a total of 11,500.

While expressing reluctance to exacerbate what is in some quarters an already contentious relationship between agents and the company, Jim Fish, executive director of the National Association of Professional Allstate Agents, says the association does plan to ask whether any agency-owner terminations took place based on inaccurate information aggregated by Allstate’s systems.

A spokeswoman for Allstate says overall, its information is correct and that the errors related only to the bonus payments. She adds that the termination of any agent is a very long and involved process and would not be based solely upon the aggregated data.

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