State lawmakers split on auto insurance legislation

By T. Scott Boatright

The Louisiana Senate zigged while the House zagged while considering on Tuesday bills designed to prevent auto insurance companies from setting rates based on factors other than a customer’s driving record.

The Senate Insurance Committee decided not to advance Senate Bill 55 by Alexandria Democrat Jay Luneau with a 4-4 vote. That bill would have banned automobile insurers from using three factors when setting rates: the insured person’s status as a widow or widower, their credit score and their gender if over age 25.

Zagging was the state House, while voting on House Bill 467 by Rep. Edmond Jordan (D-Baton Rouge), which doesn’t question gender or marital status. That bill is designed to ban credit information, education level, employment and occupation as factors in setting auto insurance prices and advanced on a 7-6 vote.

Average car insurance rates in Louisiana are higher than anywhere in the country due to the number of accident-related lawsuits. The average cost of car insurance in Louisiana is $975 for basic coverage and $2,724 for full car insurance, which breaks down to roughly $80 or $227 per month.


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