Auto Insurance Premiums and Low-income Drivers

How Detroit factory workers get charged more than lawyers for auto insurance, By Chad Livengood, August 2, 2017, Crain’s Detroit Business: “It costs more for the undereducated working poor or unemployed who rent homes to buy auto insurance in Michigan than homeowners with white collar careers living and driving in the same city. That’s the charge from a new study by a California insurance researcher who has examined the impact on quotes insurers give Michigan motorists based on their job title, level of education and whether they rent or own a home — factors that have nothing to do with whether they’re safe drivers…”

Auto Insurance Premiums and Low-income Drivers

Some states take aim at ‘discriminatory’ auto insurance pricing, By Sarah Breitenbach, August 28, 2015, Stateline: “Be a safe driver. Don’t buy a flashy sports car. Pay the insurance premium on time. These are maxims many drivers follow to keep their auto insurance costs in check. But they may not be enough for many low-income drivers, who consumer advocates say are routinely priced out of insurance coverage because they are judged not just by their driving records, but by their credit scores, occupation, education level or other factors. It’s a discriminatory practice by insurance companies that disproportionately increases premium payments for low-income drivers, said J. Robert Hunter, a former Texas insurance commissioner and director of insurance for the Consumer Federation of America (CFA). And some states are trying to stop it…”

State Medicaid Program – Indiana

Indiana’s poor get Medicaid — by paying, By Noam N. Levey, June 15, 2015, Chicago Tribune: “Linda Joyner, at 64, just got health coverage. Uninsured for years, the former waitress signed up for Medicaid after Indiana expanded its program through the Affordable Care Act. But unlike millions of low-income Americans who’ve enrolled in the government plan since last year, Joyner is paying for her coverage. Indiana, which has a conservative Republican governor and legislature, is pioneering an experiment that requires low-income patients to contribute monthly to a special health account. Joyner chips in $12.33…”

Auto Insurance Premiums in Low-Income Areas

Low-income drivers face higher auto insurance, even when they have clean driving records, By Danielle Douglas-Gabriel, September 30, 2014, Washington Post: “For someone making $21,000 a year, paying $500 a year for auto insurance can be a struggle. Yet low-income families across the country are paying about that much for minimum coverage, even with clean driving records, according to the Consumer Federation of America. Researchers at the advocacy group found that the five largest auto insurers — Allstate, Farmers, GEICO, Progressive and State Farm — do not offer basic policies to safe drivers for less than $500 a year in more than one-third of the nation’s low-income areas…”

Medicaid Premiums

Medicaid gives the poor a reason to say no thanks, By Aaron E. Carroll, September 22, 2014, New York Times: “There are generally two ways that people with insurance pay for health care in the United States: premiums, which get you insurance before you receive care, and a variety of cost-sharing mechanisms — like deductibles, co-pays and coinsurance — that come into play when you do receive it. While Medicaid, our safety net program for the poor, has used cost-sharing mechanisms for some time, it has been prohibited from asking people to pay premiums…”