|By Tim Grant, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette|
|McClatchy-Tribune Information Services|
In its third report on auto insurance premiums charged by major auto insurers, the
Researchers found that in two-thirds of the 60 cases studied, large auto insurers quoted higher premiums to safe drivers than to those who recently caused an accident. And in more than three-fifths of those cases, the premiums quoted to the safe driver exceeded the premium offered the unsafe driver by at least 25 percent.
"State insurance regulators should require auto insurers to explain why they believe factors such as education and income are better predictors of losses than are at-fault accidents," said
"Policymakers should ask why auto insurers are permitted to discriminate on the basis of non-driving related factors."
CFA priced policies in 12 major cities using the websites of the nation's five largest auto insurers --
The organization compared premiums quoted to two 30-year-old women who had each driven for 10 years, lived on the same street in the same middle-income ZIP code and sought minimum liability coverage required by that state.
But the women differed in several important ways: One was a single receptionist with a high school education who rents, had been without insurance for 45 days and has never had an accident or speeding ticket. The other women was a married executive with a master's degree who owns a home, has had continuous coverage but has an at-fault accident with
In every case, Farmers,
But in all 12 cities,
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