PCI Applauds Governor and Alaska Director of Insurance Lori Wing-Heier for Working on an Important Consumer Protection Bill
JUNEAU, Alaska – Governor Bill Walker and the Alaska Legislature approved an important measure last week that will give consumers the full benefit of credit-based insurance scoring while also creating an equitable process to resolve credit disputes. Prior to approval of HB 195, Alaska was the only state in the nation that required insurers to strip out the credit-based insurance score from the rating process when renewing an insurance policy, says the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI). This limitation led to complaints and unnecessary churning of policies as consumers moved from carrier to carrier to retain their insurance score discount provided for new policies.
“Governor Walker and Alaska Director of Insurance Lori Wing-Heier should be commended for this common-sense approach that balances consumer protection with the opportunity for consumers to receive the full benefits of credit scoring which includes premium discounts,” said Armand Feliciano, PCI vice president for state government relations. “HB 195 resolves this ongoing problem that frustrated consumers when they lost their discount upon their policy renewal.”
The bill contains vital consumer protections by enabling consumers to apply for extraordinary life circumstances (ELC) exceptions such as catastrophe, serious illness, death, divorce, identity theft, loss of employment, military deployment, and others. Consumers will also have the opportunity to appeal an adverse action directly to the Director of the Division of Insurance.
“Policymakers found a reasonable middle ground that gives Alaska consumers the ability to retain their insurance scoring discount when they renew their policy,” said Feliciano. “This is a win-win for Alaska insurance customers.”