PCI Concerned with Restrictive Measures Under Consideration in Maine

January 27, 2004

Efforts to enact legislation reportedly restricting the ability of insurers to operate in a competitive fashion in the Maine homeowners insurance market are being met with concern by the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America.

“We were dismayed to learn that the Insurance and Financial Services Committee has decided to kill LD 667, a bill that addressed insurers’ concerns about the homeowners market in Maine,” said PCI New England Regional Manager Frank O’Brien. “At the same time, Gov. Baldacci’s administration has announced plans to submit a Governor’s Bill to address the various marketplace issues, and we are concerned that efforts to over-regulate insurers will have an unintended negative impact on consumers in the long run.

“Establishing a Market Assistance Program (MAP) and eventually a Fair Access to Insurance Requirements (FAIR) Plan to provide insurance to homeowners and businesses in certain areas of the state, particularly the coastal areas, will result in unfavorable conditions for insurers and will likely have a chilling effect on the insurance marketplace in Maine.”

O’Brien said PCI will continue to work with Insurance Superintendent Iuppa, the legislature and the Governor to provide a better understanding of the impact these kinds of restrictions could have on the state. “We believe over-regulation is partly to blame for the problem with homeowners rates in Maine, and further restrictions will only exacerbate the problem.”

PCI represents 13 member companies domiciled in Maine. PCI members write nearly 65 percent of the homeowners insurance in the state.

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