Rate Rollback Bills in the Works at Texas Leg.

March 3, 2003

The Senate Committee on Business and Commerce announced it heard invited testimony on Senate Bill (SB) 400 which would require insurance companies to roll rates back to the levels that were in effect on January 1, 2001, and regulate insurance companies by requiring their rates be approved by the commissioner of insurance.

San Antonio Senator Leticia Van de Putte’s proposed legislation would also require insurance companies to disclose underwriting guidelines and authorizes the Texas Department of Insurance to adopt and approve insurance rating manuals. In addition, SB 400 would prohibit the use of credit scoring for both underwriting and rating.

Senator Van de Putte said that SB 400 will put the burden of proof on the insurance companies to prove that their rates are not excessive and will ensure that insurer’s rating practices no longer remain secret. She said that the bill will give homeowners a deserved relief and will provide them an average refund of $436.

A companion bill, HB 600, is being considered in the House.

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