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BUSINESS
December 18, 1990
The Maryland insurance commissioner has ruled that insurance companies can legally base their rates for auto policies on where a driver lives. The practice, known as territorial rating, means that city residents usually pay higher premiums than do drivers who live in the suburbs. Rural residents pay the least. The commissioner also ruled the system is reasonable because city drivers file claims more frequently than suburban and rural residents.The Evening Sun wants to know whether you think territorial rating is fair.
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NEWS
September 3, 2013
Each year, Allstate Insurance Co. issues a report on the "best drivers" in the nation, and each year, Baltimore drivers fare poorly. The good news is that the company's 2013 ranking has Baltimore moving up to No. 193. The bad news is that they only looked at 194 cities. That's right, only nearby Washington, D.C. is regarded by the insurer as being home to worse drivers. And what did Allstate consider when making its rankings? It's how often accident claims were filed by drivers living in the nation's most populous cities.
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BUSINESS
By Ross Hetrick and Ross Hetrick,Sun Staff Writer | April 9, 1994
Benefiting from a drop in auto claims and hoping to expand its minuscule portion of the Maryland auto insurance market, USF&G Corp. has lowered automobile rates by an average of 12 percent statewide, including an 8 percent cut in Baltimore."
NEWS
By Charles Kraus | December 31, 2010
We are about to take our first tentative steps into the New Year. January comes with a time-honored sense of renewal. But this year, I forgot to renew my renewal. My hunch is that by the time the politicians and their enablers finish off 2011, we'll be ready to use our return tickets on the Mayflower. My retirement plans have been postponed. I'd hoped to bid adieu to my productive years, settle back with a good book and live off home equity. But lately, my house is living off me. For a while, in theory, I was a wealthy land owner.
NEWS
By Robert F. Patrick and Robert F. Patrick,SUN STAFF | September 17, 2000
The ZIP code ties of Brooklyn Park and Orchard Beach to Baltimore will not be dissolved, the U.S. Postal Service has decreed -- but Del. John R. Leopold vows to continue a 15-year quest for a change in their numeric identities. Residents of the Anne Arundel County areas have complained for years about delivery confusion and higher auto insurance rates that they believe result from having a city ZIP. "For some people, it's a petty thing," said Woody Bowen, vice president of the Olde Brooklyn Park Improvement Association, "but try to battle your insurance company ... or direct someone to find your community."
NEWS
BY A SUN STAFF WRITER | February 11, 2005
The head of the Maryland Insurance Administration announced yesterday the formation of a task force that will study and review auto insurance rates in urban areas of the state. Commissioner Alfred W. Redmer Jr. said the task force will include legislators, consumers and industry representatives, and that it will look at ways to lower auto insurance rates in Baltimore and in Prince George's County, which tend to have higher rates than other jurisdictions. As a result of the high premiums in those areas of the state, Baltimore and Prince George's County have a higher percentage of uninsured motorists, Redmer said in a written statement released yesterday.
BUSINESS
By Kevin L. McQuaid and Kevin L. McQuaid,SUN STAFF | April 16, 1998
Geico Direct said yesterday that it will lower auto insurance rates for its Maryland policy holders by as much as 7.9 percent, a move that could force other insurers to slash rates.Geico's decision to lower rates comes as it is targeting the Baltimore metropolitan area for growth, expanding on its stronghold in Washington, where the insurer is based.The company said the rate decreases stem from mild weather, safer cars and safer drivers that have caused fewer and less severe accidents.Wall Street's continued bull run has also sent rates down, because increased investment returns allow insurers to cut auto rates without affecting profits.
NEWS
By Christopher Scanlan and Christopher Scanlan,Knight-Ridder Newspapers | September 25, 1990
WASHINGTON -- U.S. consumers' ignorance about the marketplace costs them billions of dollars, threatens their health and safety and undermines the national economy, a consumer group reported yesterday.Most Americans don't know that auto insurance rates vary widely from company to company, that life insurance becomes less important as one grows older and that real estate agents represent only the seller."Many consumers are not equipped to function competently in the marketplace," concluded Stephen J. Brobeck, executive director of the Consumer Federation of America, a coalition of 240 consumer groups that sponsored the nation's first comprehensive test of consumer knowledge.
BUSINESS
By Ross Hetrick and Ross Hetrick,Evening Sun Staff | October 19, 1990
State Farm Insurance Companies, the largest insurer of automobiles in Maryland, wants to do something unusual -- cut auto insurance rates in most of Baltimore.In a filing with the state Insurance Division, State Farm is proposing to cut the average automobile insurance rate for most of its city policyholders by 1.4 percent. The average rate includes liability, collision and comprehensive coverage.Rates would rise in a small part of north and northeast Baltimore.The Bloomington, Ill.-based insurer said its proposal is based on experience in Baltimore that indicates overall costs have declined relative to other parts of the state.
BUSINESS
By David Conn and David Conn,Annapolis Bureau of The Sun | March 14, 1991
ANNAPOLIS -- A Senate committee dashed yesterday the hopes of urban drivers looking for relief from high auto insurance rates by killing a package of bills that would prohibit setting prices according to where a driver lives.But the Senate Finance Committee's votes on the so-called "territorial rating" bills, sponsored primarily by senators from Baltimore, mean drivers in less urbanized areas of the state will not see their rates rise as a result.The committee also voted against bills that would:* Abolish the insurance industry's exemption from state antitrust laws.
NEWS
BY A SUN STAFF WRITER | February 11, 2005
The head of the Maryland Insurance Administration announced yesterday the formation of a task force that will study and review auto insurance rates in urban areas of the state. Commissioner Alfred W. Redmer Jr. said the task force will include legislators, consumers and industry representatives, and that it will look at ways to lower auto insurance rates in Baltimore and in Prince George's County, which tend to have higher rates than other jurisdictions. As a result of the high premiums in those areas of the state, Baltimore and Prince George's County have a higher percentage of uninsured motorists, Redmer said in a written statement released yesterday.
BUSINESS
By Thomas W. Waldron and Thomas W. Waldron,SUN STAFF | March 9, 2001
Reopening an issue that has divided the legislature for 20 years, Baltimore officials and the state insurance commissioner called yesterday for a change in Maryland law that would lead to lower automobile insurance rates for city residents. Steven B. Larsen, the insurance commissioner, said he has grown frustrated watching the General Assembly do little to bring rates down for city residents, who often pay hundreds of dollars more a year in premiums than residents of suburban or rural areas.
BUSINESS
By Gus G. Sentementes and Gus G. Sentementes,SUN STAFF | December 13, 2000
A start-up insurance company that promises to offer more affordable insurance policies to city residents and small businesses will announce today that it plans to begin operations in mid-summer of 2001. American Skyline Insurance Co., with headquarters at 14 Light St. in Baltimore, will offer standard personal and commercial insurance coverage to customers in Baltimore and Washington, including policies for automobile owners, homeowners and small business owners, said the company's chief executive officer, Earnest E. Hines.
NEWS
By Robert F. Patrick and Robert F. Patrick,SUN STAFF | September 17, 2000
The ZIP code ties of Brooklyn Park and Orchard Beach to Baltimore will not be dissolved, the U.S. Postal Service has decreed -- but Del. John R. Leopold vows to continue a 15-year quest for a change in their numeric identities. Residents of the Anne Arundel County areas have complained for years about delivery confusion and higher auto insurance rates that they believe result from having a city ZIP. "For some people, it's a petty thing," said Woody Bowen, vice president of the Olde Brooklyn Park Improvement Association, "but try to battle your insurance company ... or direct someone to find your community."
BUSINESS
By Kevin L. McQuaid and Kevin L. McQuaid,SUN STAFF | April 16, 1998
Geico Direct said yesterday that it will lower auto insurance rates for its Maryland policy holders by as much as 7.9 percent, a move that could force other insurers to slash rates.Geico's decision to lower rates comes as it is targeting the Baltimore metropolitan area for growth, expanding on its stronghold in Washington, where the insurer is based.The company said the rate decreases stem from mild weather, safer cars and safer drivers that have caused fewer and less severe accidents.Wall Street's continued bull run has also sent rates down, because increased investment returns allow insurers to cut auto rates without affecting profits.
BUSINESS
By Bill Atkinson | February 23, 1997
HOMEOWNER and auto insurance rates skyrocketed in parts of Maryland after a change in state law allowed insurers to raise rates without prior hearings or approval from the insurance commissioner. The rate increases sparked moves in the General Assembly to repeal the so-called competitive rating system. Three of those bills died in committee last week as industry lobbyists argued that the new system had not yet had enough time to allow market forces to work. A fourth bill that would require refunds to consumers hit by excessive increases is still pending.
NEWS
December 27, 1990
It depends on where you liveYour editorial of Dec. 18 on insurance options was as illogical as is most of your political commentary. Insurance rating by demographics and experience within defined areas is supported by statistical fact: More people, more crime, more vehicles, more intersections mean more claims. You don't need a degree from Hopkins to understand that.The problem is that you don't want to accept the obvious. You pander to public emotions in the name of public relations. Mary Pat Clarke [City Council president]
NEWS
March 8, 1996
THERE'S A SCAM going on that is costing the Maryland car driver big bucks. Yet few members of the General Assembly seem concerned. By doing nothing, they will be endorsing an unconscionable rip-off of state drivers by profit-hungry lawyers, doctors and insurance companies.A gubernatorial commission studied this problem and discovered that:The average driver in Virginia pays $200 less for car insurance than in Maryland.Maryland has the highest rate of attorney involvement in auto claims in the U.S., though few claims are for serious injuries.
NEWS
By Peter Jensen and Peter Jensen,Sun Staff Writer | August 5, 1995
A state commission studying Baltimore automobile insurance costs is expected to recommend changes aimed at lowering city premiums by 20 percent.David M. Funk, chair of the 17-member gubernatorial task force, said he has concluded that reforms could reduce premiums by that amount. The panel will begin discussions next week on ways to meet that goal, he said.A 20 percent reduction in the average city motorist's premium is an ambitious but realistic target, Mr. Funk said. Further, he said, the commission will recommend laws to lessen auto insurance costs for drivers elsewhere in the state.
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