INDIANAPOLIS (March 4, 2009) – A proposal advocated by the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies (NAMIC) to adopt “No Pay/No Play” legislation was heard yesterday by the Kansas Senate Financial Institutions and Insurance Committee.
If adopted, Senate Bill 260 would prohibit the recovery of non-economic damages by uninsured drivers involved in accidents. The bill would not affect an uninsured motorist’s ability to collect economic damages.
“Passage of No Pay/No Play legislation is a concrete and cost-effective step states can take to lower the number of uninsured motorists,” said Joe Thesing, NAMIC’s director of state affairs, who testified before the Senate committee. In addition, NAMIC submitted written testimony supporting the bill.
Introduction of SB 260 is the result of a unanimous recommendation made last year by the Kansas Electronic Motor Vehicle Financial Security Verification Task Force. NAMIC and other industry advocates were represented on the committee. The task force was created by the Legislature and has been studying the issue of uninsured motorists for more than three years.
In the task force’s preliminary report, it made the following recommendation:
“The Task Force is supportive of legislation that would bar uninsured motorists from the recovery of non-economic losses sustained as the result of an accident that occurred while the motorist was operating an uninsured vehicle.”
Other industry advocates testified in favor of SB 260, including the Kansas Association of Property/Casualty Insurance Companies, NAMIC’s state trade partner in Kansas. The KAPCIC testimony cited an Insurance Research Council study that found by 2010, one in six drivers will be uninsured resulting in an additional six million drivers operating without insurance.
Five states, Alaska, Michigan, California, Louisiana, and New Jersey, currently have No Pay/No Play statutes that are seen as having the strongest enforcement.
“As the Legislature debates SB 260, we will continue to remind lawmakers that driving is a privilege – a privilege with conditions and responsibilities,” Thesing concluded.
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