Insurance News


Massachusetts Managed Competition System Program Assessed

In April 2008, the state government put a managed competition system in place through the Division of Insurance. After some time, the system still continues to receive mixed reviews.

Before the system, state government set the rates for auto insurance effectively regulating insurance providers’ ability to raise rates to gain more revenue. When the plan was first introduced, advocates believed the new system would bring in new carriers and those that opposed said the system would discriminate against select drivers.

The system is now in its second year but there have only been minor changes in the nature of the auto insurance market.

Three major auto insurance providers Allstate, Geico, and Progressive, have entered the market. 6 more small local providers have also joined since the market change. The difference between the larger and smaller providers is that the smaller ones have employed the services of local insurance agents.

It is a concern that with large providers not seeking help from local agents, agents will suffer. Frank Mancini, president and CEO of the Massachusetts Association of Insurance Agents, says that even with some consumers switching to the bigger providers, agents have yet to suffer substantial losses. Independent agents handle up to 78 percent of auto insurance policies in the state. The national figures are much lower, 30 to 35 percent.

The statistics from the first year of operation under the new system show that the average auto insurance cost dropped. With the new system being a hot topic for debate, critics and advocates will surely being watching the market closely.

Massachusetts says auto rates reduced by 8%

According to the Massachusetts Division of Insurance, auto insurance rates dropped 8% since competition was introduced to the state auto insurance market:

According to a state study, auto insurance rates dropped 8.2 percent from April 2008 to April 2009, compared with a 5.2 percent decline from 2006 to 2007. The state allowed insurance companies to start setting their own rates on April 1, 2008, under what officials called a “managed competition’’ plan. Previous to that, auto insurance had been highly regulated.

Great news for consumers in Massachusetts – make sure you get a competitive Massachusetts auto insurance quote, from sites like MassDrive.com, before you renew your auto insurance policy.

Looking for a Place to Find Auto Insurance in Mass?

Feel like your paying too much for car insurance?  For younger or high risk drivers some feel that they are paying more towards their massachusetts car insurance that what their car is actually worth if it were to get totaled.  For example if a car was valued at $2000 and the driver was paying $170 a month for full coverage, then in a calender year they would over pay by $40 the value of his or her car.  There are plenty things that can lead up to a high monthly premium for a lesser valued car such as the driver having many traffic violations.

The key question asked at rentisky.com was “what’s a good website for comparing auto insurance rates in Massachusetts?”

A good place to find Massachusettes car insurance is massdrive.com, they are very helpful in obtaining an affordable quote.

Highway Speed Cameras – A Word of Caution: Slow Down!

Late at night you drive home alone on the road. A bright flash comes from behind. you check the rearview mirror, still no one behind you. You think this odd but continue on your way. Some time later you’re reading through your mail and find a speeding ticket for that night.

According to Russ Rader of the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, speed cameras are used in 48 communities nationwide, including areas of Massachusetts.

Giving the surveillance a whole police squad can not preform every hour of the day, the hope is our roads will be safer. According to the IIHS, “speed cameras ‘can substantially reduce speeding on a wide range of roadway types.'”

-“Speed Cameras on U.S. Highways?“, Craig Howie CNN

It’s important to acknowledge these cameras, even one speeding ticket will affect future auto insurance rates. Although the cameras have not been enforced nationally, they’ve slowly been creeping across the country. Driving at the posted speed limit will not only save you from spending on tickets, you’ll save on gas too!

We’ve all had the manic driver zoom up pushing us to go a few miles faster. Whether there’s a cop waiting down the block or a camera to flash your plates, you can never be sure. Follow the speed limits and you’ll reap the benefits.

Good News! Competition is working

The new deregulated system for auto insurance in Massachusetts is showing signs of success!

The number of auto insurance carriers offering plans in Massachusetts has increase by 50% since deregulation last year. Companies that have not been in Massachusetts are coming in. They are now able to offer discounts to compete for the business of Massachusetts drivers!

The Commonwealth Automobile Reinsurers collected data and found that the number of drivers classified as a high risk is at an all time low in decades. To give you a better perspective of how much this has dropped, the percentage of high risk drivers was above 60% in 1988. It is currently at 3.5%!

It’s statistically obvious that the deregulation of the market has proven to be beneficial thus far but it has also received consumer praise. More than 71% of all drivers have voiced there support of the new system. Why wouldn’t they? Drivers are saving!

Look into your options at massdrive.com if you are not happy with your current provider. The Massachusetts auto insurance market has changed and you could be eligible to receive the benefits!

Testing Older Drivers

A new bill is being proposed that would require the elderly to be tested to see that they are fit to be driving.  Loretta Worters, vice president of the Insurance Information Institute said that by 2030 25 percent of drivers on the road will be 65 and older.

According to the insurance institute of highway safety, the elderly have the highest rate of fatal crashes than any other group except young drivers.  The new bill would require that elderly 85 and over would have to take road and vision tests before being eligible to drive.

On a local radio show last Thursday, Governor Deval Patrick, said “If it comes to me, I’ll sign it.”

It’s important to look at all affects of the bill before making your own opinion.  Is it possible that seniors have just been given a bad name due to a few crashes?  What kind of transportation will be available to seniors that lose their license due to the bill?  Will the bill make the roads safer for everyone?

After considering both sides of the bill you will be much more qualified to speak on the topic.

Progressive settles charges for $120,000

Why will Progressive be paying Massachusetts $120,000?

If you haven’t heard, Progressive was investigated for its business practices after entering the Massachusetts insurance market in May of 2008. Attorney General Martha Coakley was the first to draw attention to the problem. From the start of their operations until late last year Progressive was comparing their 6 month premium prices with other companies 12 month premium. After Progressive realized they had made a huge mistake they did try to fix their mistakes but it did not help them when the charges were finally settled on May 26, 2009.

Is there any way you can protect yourself from this problem? MassDrive.com makes this easy by finding affordable Massachusetts auto insurance options and comparing them for you! It is crucial that you can get accurate quotes from multiple insurance providers to help you make the best decision. The best deal is only visible when you consider all of your options before making a decision.

Allstate returns after deregulation

For decades, Massachusetts was one of the few states that still operated their insurance market under strict regulations. These regulations forced all providers to offer the same product, essentially eliminating all competition between companies.

On April 1, 2008 the whole playing field changed when deregulation of policy prices was set in place. Since then, big things have been happening. With the return of Allstate to the Massachusetts auto marketgenerates some serious competition now.

This puts the consumer at an advantage because discounted rates are now given out to good drivers. The only problem is that it takes more work on the consumer’s part to compare all of the rates. At least that’s what the problem used to be; now you can compare the most affordable Masachusetts auto insurance policies!

Direct writers battle it out in Massachusetts

Direct writers are preparing for a battle with each other – and agents – with Geico and Allstate setting up shop in Massachusetts. According to the Insurance Journal, it’s been a long-time coming:

“We have been looking forward to serving Massachusetts drivers for a long time,” said Steve Cunningham, regional vice president, in a statement released by Geico. “We are very happy to be here and doing business with Massachusetts residents. We think we can bring them low rates and great service.”

“People are looking for value and choice,” said George Ruebenson, President of Allstate Protection. “As a company with a solid reputation and a national presence, Allstate will provide

Indeed, the consumers of Massachusetts do want choice – that’s why MassDriver.org exists, to bring light to the options and choices that Massachusetts consumers have in their search for the best auto insurance for their needs. You can’t save if you don’t compare!

Got Geico?

MassDriver told you Geico was on its way to Massachusetts,, and now Geico’s begun selling policies in the Bay State:

GEICO started selling auto insurance to residents of the state of Massachusetts on Monday.

Employees of GEICO started giving quotes online. The company said its first customer was Beth Opishinski of Whitman, Mass.

Beth, if you’re out there, let us know how your experience went!

Ready for a Quote?
Get A Quote