Stop Allowing Insurance Rate Hikes, State Urged

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Los Angeles Times

A consumer group asked state Insurance Commissioner Harry Low to stop approving insurance rate hikes, saying a moratorium is needed to prevent insurers from taking advantage of market turmoil in the wake of Sept. 11.

The Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights in Santa Monica said Low needs to revise the rate approval process so any proposed increases can be better scrutinized by the public.

Insurers have asked for steep rate hikes across the country in certain business lines, such as commercial property, business interruption and workers’ compensation coverage, to cover costs from the terrorist attacks and the perceived higher risk of terrorism.

Insurers also have raised rates this year on homeowner and auto coverage, but the increases have been smaller and the companies say they’re not related to Sept. 11.

Consumer Watchdog
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