A group of senators recently presented a bill in the West Virginia Senate, proposing a more than 30 percent increase in minimum auto insurance coverage for vehicle owners. If the Senate passes the bill, defense attorneys dealing with auto accidents may see a rise in claims against their insurance company clients, as victims attempt to take advantage of increased levels of coverage.
Under the current requirements, all drivers must have a minimum insurance coverage of $40,000 for personal injury claims and a further minimum $10,000 to cover property damage claims. The new bill proposes increasing these minimum levels to $50,000 for personal injury coverage and $25,000 for property claims. West Virginia auto insurance defense attorneys can help you understand your coverage in more detail.
Possible resulting increases in insurance premiums are likely to have the greatest effect on those who can afford it the least. As a result, if insurance premiums rise beyond an affordable level, the number of underinsured or uninsured drivers in the state may also rise. This argument was put forward by those advocating against the proposed hikes, arguing that that the proposed increases are unnecessary, as the average claim against an insurance policy in West Virginia remains currently below the proposed levels. Those in favor of increasing the minimum coverage rates note that the current levels of coverage have not been reviewed since they were set in place in 1979, and are now totally out of date with regard to the current costs of medical care, vehicle repair and replacement rates associated with car accidents.
Contact Pullin, Fowler, Flanagan, Brown & Poe today to discuss how these proposals may affect you and the auto insurance industry. Our firm includes lawyers based in West Virginia who deal with auto insurance defense in West Virginia, Kentucky and Ohio. An Ohio auto insurance defense attorney from our office can defend compensation cases for insurance companies and advise clients on long-term strategies, taking into consideration any current trends in practice or changes in legislation.