Truth in Automobile Insurance Law is Great Benefit to Wisconsin Citizens
By The Racine News Team
Madison, WI– An attempt to repeal the automobile insurance changes in the state budget is bad news for Wisconsin auto consumers. Those in favor of the repeal say legislators were warned that premiums would rise on average between 33 and 43 percent if these changes were made, but those claims were rebuffed by the insurance industry themselves.
At a public hearing last November that sought repeal of the automobile insurance changes, a question was asked about the alleged premium increase. Andy Franken, representing the Wisconsin Insurance Alliance backed away from the number saying they “have not put out any documents or studies post-Act 28 that reference premium increases at any percentage.”
“This repeal looks like a great gift to the insurance companies, “ said Paul Gagliardi, President of the Wisconsin Association for Justice. “There is absolutely no justification for this give-away to the insurance companies.”
“The U.S. Insurance Industry has trillions of dollars in assets and enjoys average profits of over $30 billion a year.
The Consumer Federation of America found that consumers of property/casualty insurance receive only 55 cents back from every premium dollar spent, a 20 percent reduction over the past 20 years. The Insurance Industry pays its CEO’s more than any other industry with CEO’s in the top ten property/casualty companies earning an average of $8.9 million in 2007,” said Gagliardi.
Gagliardi provided the example of Allstate, a major insurance company that is publicly traded. “Even though Allstate lost money in 2008, the top five executives at Allstate had their salaries and bonuses increased to over $60 million. To attend meetings, the eleven directors had their average pay increased, going up to $150,000 – $170,000 per year in stock options and base pay from $40,000 – $70,000 in 2007. In the first half of 2009 Allstate’s consolidated revenue was up 14% from 2008. Net income as compared to the first 6 months of 2008 was up 15.56 times ($389 million from $25 million),” stated Gagliardi
“Protecting automobile consumers should be the top priority of legislators. The Truth in Automobile Insurance legislation did that. They are protecting millions of Wisconsin consumers today. The law should not be altered to take away consumer rights just to increase insurance profits,” stated Gagliardi.
For additional information on the Truth in Auto Insurance Law, go to www.wisjustice.org/facts.
The Wisconsin Association for Justice stands with consumers to promote a fair and effective justice system for every citizen, not just the privileged and wealthy.