West Virginia Insurance Disclosure Bill Passes House

February 29, 2012

West Virginia’s House of Delegates has approved requiring insurance companies to provide policy information in advance of claims.

The bipartisan bill passed 64-33 Monday would allow people filing a file claim to learn the policy’s coverage limits, potential defenses and other information.

Supporters say a dozen states have similar disclosure laws, including neighboring Virginia.

The state Chamber of Commerce opposes the bill. It and other business groups warn that plaintiff’s lawyers would obtain information about anyone’s insurance coverage for practically any reason.

House Judiciary Chair Tim Miley denounced their allegations Monday as hysterical propaganda. He successfully had the bill amended to limit disclosures to people filing claims.

Supporters argue that such information must already be disclosed once a lawsuit is filed. They say the bill will reduce insurance lawsuits.

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