Delaware Public Media

Older drivers could get break on car insurance

Mar 17, 2017

Auto insurance companies would no longer be able to use a person’s age, credit score, marital status and other factors when calculating someone’s premiums under a new bill being considered by the General Assembly.

The proposal would limit insurance companies to considering only a person’s driving record, their experience and how many miles they travel per year.

Vehicle specific information and how it’s used will still be covered.

Sponsoring Rep. Trey Paradee (D-Dover West) calls it an “anti-discrimination bill.”

“Just because someone turns to the age of 75 doesn’t mean that they all of a sudden should be paying higher rates – especially if they’ve had a lifetime of virtually no accidents,” Paradee said.

Insurance Commissioner Trinidad Navarro (D), who helped write the bill, says it’s not fair to automatically hike someone’s bills just because of the year on their birth certificate.

“These folks, just like folks who have poor credit, we need to stand up for them. These rating factors should not be allowed,” Navarro said.

But statistically, drivers between the ages of 16-19 and those over 70 are more likely to be involved in accidents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Navarro says companies won’t jack up premiums for the rest of their customers to make up the difference should the bill pass.

Instead, he says drivers who were priced out because of their age, credit score or marital status would return to the risk pool.

The bill faces steep opposition from insurance companies, which have already begun their lobbying campaign against it.