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Regulatory News

CALIFORNIA

The state’s insurance commissioner orders Allstate to lower its rates for homeowners by 28.5%. This is on the heels of a 15.9% state-mandated auto policy rate cut earlier this year. >> Both the state legislature and the Department of Insurance are pursuing “pay-as-you-drive” insurance. Supporters say the plan, which permits insurers to charge different premiums based on verified driving patterns, will provide Californians incentive to drive less, thereby reducing overall emissions and rewarding low-mileage, lower-polluting auto owners. Opponents say the process of verifying mileage would include the installation of “spyware” into cars. They also argue that anyone who refuses to have the verification software would pay a higher premium. www.insurance.ca.gov

FLORIDA

Commissioner Kevin McCarty proposes a national all-risk homeowners policy that would supplant the current system of separating perils and offering them as add-ons to homeowners policies. He acknowledges that such a policy could cost more but points to the potential savings in “federal bailouts and litigation.” www.floir.com

ILLINOIS

Gov. Blagojevich amends a healthcare bill requiring insurers to pay for diagnosis and treatment of autism (up to $36,000 annually until a child reaches 21). Mike McRaith, Illinois’ insurance director, says the bill would give the state the most comprehensive guarantee for autism coverage nationwide. The bill has bipartisan support. www.idfpr.com/DOI/Default2.asp

IOWA

Bulletin 08-11 bans rebates offered to a policyholder or potential policyholder that are not specifically incorporated into the policy and made part of its pricing. This includes any good or service not specifically in the policy. The Division of Insurance will check on compliance. www.iid.state.ia.us

LOUISIANA

Raises auto insurance coverage requirements for car and truck owners starting in 2010, mandating $15,000 in property, $30,000 in liability for injury/death to more than one person, and $25,000 in liability for injury/death to one person. www.ldi.state.la.us

MARYLAND

Gets new insurance fraud chief, Carolyn Henneman, who previously served as an international prosecutor with the U.N. in Kosovo, where she specialized in corruption, financial crimes and human trafficking. She also has served as a long-time assistant attorney general in Maryland. >> Insurance Commissioner Ralph Tyler cuts CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield CEO William Jews’ severance package from $18 million to $9 million, saying that the executive’s pay violated the fair and reasonable standard for a non-profit. www.mdinsurance.state.md.us/

MASSACHUSETTS

Insurance Commissioner Nonnie Burnes touts success of deregulation of auto insurance market, citing the entry of four new insurers in three months. www.mass.gov/

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