INDIANAPOLIS (Feb. 20, 2007) - The National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies (NAMIC) will strongly oppose any proposal in Mississippi that would enact elements of legislation recently adopted in Florida. At a press conference today, Attorney General James Hood said Mississippi should apply the “anti-cherry picking” provisions of the Florida law that would force insurers that write auto insurance in Mississippi, to also write homeowner’s in the state — as long as they write homeowner’s insurance in other states. “This legislation is punitive and will only worsen the insurance market in Mississippi,” said Neil Alldredge NAMIC’s vice president of state and regulatory affairs.
Hood singled out State Farm’s recent announcement that it would not write new homeowner’s business in Mississippi as justification for the legislation. “Unfortunately, consumers will pay the price for this action,” Alldredge said. "It sends a clear signal to every insurer that Mississippi is a hostile environment. Insurers are focused on rebuilding the coast and Mr. Hood seems intent on playing politics.”
It’s important to note that 334,800 or 94.3 percent of expected homeowners claims in Mississippi, totaling $5.2 billion, have been settled in the aftermath of hurricane Katrina. “This fact seems to be ignored,” Alldredge said. “Instead, Attorney General Hood seems convinced that measures that punish insurers and destabilize the market are the best options.”
NAMIC will work to defeat this legislation, should it garner support among Mississippi legislators. “Policymakers in Mississippi should take steps to encourage insurers to do business in Mississippi as a way to create more consumer choice, not adopt measurers that will only worsen the situation,” Alldredge said.
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Posted: Tuesday, February 20, 2007 12:00:00 AM. Modified: Tuesday, February 20, 2007 10:44:24 AM.
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