NJ Industry and Consumer Groups Launch Campaign for Auto Insurance Reform

April 9, 2002

Insurance industry and consumer groups have joined together to launch an extensive advertising campaign aimed at building support for their efforts to bring about reforms in New Jersey’s automobile insurance market.

The “Coalition for Auto Insurance Competition” began a statewide media campaign, including radio and newspaper advertising on Monday to “galvanize support for fundamental reform of New Jersey’s car insurance system that will result in increased insurance competition benefiting our state.”

“The Coalition is striving to achieve a regulatory system that promotes competition, encourages companies to sell auto insurance in New Jersey, and creates a stable market that offers more choices for consumers,” stated John Friedman, chairman of the Coalition for Auto Insurance Competition.

He indicated that four out of the six largest insurers in America already do not do business in New Jersey and warned that “when the state’s largest auto insurer completes its announced withdrawal, that number will increase to five out of six.”

“Over 20 auto insurers have left New Jersey in the past decade,” Friedman stated, and more are planning to leave. “This, in turn, has profound consequences for consumers. Nearly one million New Jersey drivers could soon find themselves scrambling for coverage.”

Friedman stressed the need to change restrictive regulations which discourage insurers from operating in New Jersey by limiting what products they can sell, dictating to whom they must sell and the rates they can charge. The regulations give companies no incentive to remain and invest in New Jersey.

“The Coalition for Auto Insurance Competition is a bi-partisan group formed by the auto insurance industry’s trade associations (American Insurance Association, Insurance Council of New Jersey, National Association of Independent Insurers) and member companies and includes a variety of business groups and organizations,” said the announcement. “Coalition members include the Independent Insurance Agents of New Jersey, National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies, Citizens for a Sound Economy, Commerce and Industry Association of New Jersey, New Jersey Society for Economic and Environmental Development, New Jersey Retail Merchants Association and the Food Council of New Jersey.

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