ANNAPOLIS, Md. — PCI testified today before the Senate Finance Committee in opposition of anti-consumer auto insurance bills. Dave Snyder, PCI’s vice president, policy testified opposing Senate Bill 534, which would prohibit an insurers’ use of marital status, education, and occupation and further restrict the use of credit information. This bill is the companion to House Bill 916. The following comment may be attributed to Snyder.
“It is important consumers realize that they significantly benefit from insurers use of accurate predictors of loss to price their products,” said Snyder. “Credit-based insurance scores have proven to be one of the most accurate predictors for risk of loss and therefore allow insurers to offer lower rates to many policyholders.
“Senate Bill 534 and House Bill 916 could have negative effects on consumers by potentially denying the majority of responsible policyholders lower rates in order to subsidize higher risk drivers. The legislation also could potentially prevent insurers from offering discounts or underwriting specifically for service members and their families, teachers, farmers, and other groups,” continued Snyder.
“PCI has continually emphasized that the best way to reduce costs in auto insurance is to address the rising costs due to the increased accident frequency and severity and high mandatory coverages. PCI encourages the lawmakers to promote driver safety and enact highway safety laws to protect motorists and pedestrians and keep insurance costs stable. PCI will continue to engage the committee and the legislature on the serious implications of this legislation,” concluded Snyder.
Oyango Snell, PCI’s counsel for state government relations voiced concerns on three Maryland Automobile Insurance Fund (MAIF) bills. Snell testified in opposition of Senate Bill 533, which would establish a Low-Cost Automobile Insurance Program. The bill would require that the program be part of MAIF and would sell, issue, and deliver policies of automobile insurance to individuals, who meet eligibility requirements. Private automobile insurance carriers would be prohibited from participating in the program. The following comment may be attributed to Snell.
“PCI supports efforts to keep insurance affordable for consumers,” said Snell. “Senate Bill 533, however, could increase insurance costs by limiting competition by prohibiting private auto insurance carriers from offering low cost insurance products. PCI opposes any legislative effort to stifle competition and limit consumer choice in the insurance marketplace. PCI will continue with industry partners to push back against enactment of Senate Bill 533 and other MAIF legislation.”