Insurance measure would mean more competition, better choices for consumers
San Francisco, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 10/09/2012 -- A proposal to extend auto insurance discounts in California would benefit all the state’s drivers, and particularly military personnel, a veterans advocate says.
In California, drivers can get an insurance discount if they follow the law and maintain their policy with the same carrier. Proposition 33 would enable consumers to change insurers and keep the discount. This would improve competition and bring lower rates, Pete Conaty, a retired Army lieutenant colonel and veterans advocate, writes in the Santa Cruz Sentinel.
Forty-eight other states allow the discount proposed in California, Conaty writes.
If approved, the measure would let drivers maintain their current policy, negotiate a better rate with their carrier or seek another insurer with the same discount.
Conaty says this would help more people stay insured, including military personnel on bases or deployed overseas and people who have been laid off for up to a year and a half.
Veterans in particular face a problem with policy lapses, Conaty writes, adding that the Vietnam Veterans of America, the GI Forum, the Veterans of Foreign Wars and American Legion all support Prop. 33.
The proposed measure also would apply to children living with their parents. A similar law in effect in 1996-2002 did not lead to higher rates, Conaty writes, and the number of drivers without insurance was reduced almost by half.
The proposal would prevent insurance rates from being excessive, protecting the uninsured from high prices when they do obtain coverage, and would give the Department of Insurance authority over insurance rates.
More competition in the market for auto insurance will lead to lower prices and safer roads, Conaty says.
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