The National Association of Independent Insurers warned that several loopholes in recently passed legislation by the New York State Assembly (AB 8654-D), aimed at correcting abuses in the State’s no-fault auto insurance laws, were serious enough that it would oppose the bill, unless they were corrected.
NAII Counsel Joseph Termini, in a letter to Assembly Pro Tem Ivan Lafayette (D-Bronx), pointed out several provisions that should be changed. These included:
-A proposed two year freeze on auto insurance rates.
-Exceptions to the 60 day period for filing claims, which the NAII feels are so broad as to make the requirement useless.
-A flawed managed care option, which would give policyholders a reduction in premium, but doesn’t require them to use the service.
To remedy the current problem of insurance fraud and abuse of New York’s no-fault insurance law, Termini urged that the Assembly consider the following revisions:
-Change current case law which prohibits insurers from denying claims after 30 days, even if fraud is present.
-Establish “soft tissue” care treatment guidelines
– Strengthen provisions to decertify medical providers who abuse the no-fault system.
– Enhance the assignment of benefits process to include elimination of “round assignments” where a medical provider pursues a patient for the same amount an insurer has denied.
-Require the use of arbitration by experienced personnel before a case goes to court.
-Strengthen the “verbal tort” threshold
-Provide additional funding for the prosecution of no-fault fraud.
Termini urged the Assembly to consider proposals put forward by the Senate and the Insurance Department, which he indicated “address the underlying problems better than do Assembly Bills.”|”naii, seeks, corrections, in, ny, insurance, fraud, bill, , august, 23,, 2001, national, association, of, independent, insurers, warned, that, several, loopholes, in, recently, passed, legislation, by, new, york, state, assembly, (ab, 8654-d),, aimed, correcting, abuses, in, state’s, no-fault, auto, insurance, laws,, were, serious, enough, that, it, would, oppose, bill,, unless, they, were, corrected., naii, counsel, joseph, termini,, in, letter, assembly, pro, tem, ivan, lafayette, (d-bronx),, pointed, out, several, provisions, that, should, be, changed., these, included:, , -a, proposed, two, year, freeze, on, auto, insurance, rates.
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