Wash. Carrier to Refund Med-Mal Premiums

July 28, 2005

Physicians Insurance – Washington’s largest medical malpractice insurer – is refunding approximately $900,000 in premium, plus interest to providers due to miscalculated premiums charged in 2004.

In a consent order issued earlier this year, Physicians Insurance and its affiliate, Western Professional Insurance Company, was ordered by the Office of the Insurance Commissioner to refund more than $1.3 million plus interest in excess premium charged in 2003.

As part of that order, Physicians Insurance had the opportunity to go back and make its own corrections to any additional overcharges. During this review, the company discovered problems in the billing of their 2004 rates.

Approximately 2,400 providers are receiving refunds averaging $350.

“Despite the softening market, medical malpractice insurance continues to be a financial burden for many providers and they deserve to pay a fair price for their coverage,” said Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler. “I appreciate the efforts of CEO Mary-Lou Misrahy and the new leadership in Physicians Insurance to bring the company back into compliance with the rates approved by my office.”

Physicians Insurance covers approximately 70 percent of the state’s physicians and surgeons. The company issued a rate reduction of 7.7 percent for 2005.

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