Credit Scoring May Come Up in Olympics-Disrupted Utah 2002 Legislative Session

January 21, 2002

According to the National Association of Independent Insurers (NAII), although the credit-scoring issue is lurking in the background, few bills of major insurer interest are definitely set yet for the Utah legislative session that will have a mid-term break due to the Winter Olympics.

“One trial bar bill that has raised some concern among insurers is a measure providing mandatory arbitration in auto insurance disputes involving family members residing in the same household,” said Ann Weber, NAII counsel. She said NAII will strongly oppose any provisions in the bill for binding arbitration or disclosure of insurance coverage in the event the case should end up in the courts.

The legislature will convene on Jan. 21, as required by the state constitution, but then will recess on Feb. 7, the day before the Olympics begin, to re-convene on Feb. 21 until March 6, for 22 working days.

When the legislature convenes on January 21, it will start with bills that have been approved by interim committees, which will bypass additional committee action and go directly to the floor.

Insurance-related issues that may arise during the session, Weber said, include:

Credit-Based Insurance Scores – Insurers succeeded in persuading the sponsor to delete references to insurance in one bill, leaving it directed solely at credit reporting agencies. A request has been made, however, for another bill entitled “Motor Vehicle Insurance and Credit Information;” the text of that bill is not yet available.

Prompt Pay – A bill has been filed entitled “Timely Payment of Insurance” but the text is not yet available. The sponsor has been agitated in the past by perceived management of an insurance claim filed by an immediate family member.

Uninsured Motorists – A bill entitled “Motor Vehicle Insurance Coverage” may expand UM coverage but details are not yet available. The bill is rumored to be sponsored by the trial bar.

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