Louisiana Department of Insurance
MONTHLY REPORT
Volume 10, Issue 12


Members
Commissioner Jim Donelon
Theodore "Ted" Haik, Jr., Chair
Jeff Albright, Vice Chair

Raymond J. Aleman, Sr.
Lee Ann Alexander
Chris Broadwater
Paul Buffone
Sheriff Greg Champagne
Representative Page Cortez
Manuel DePascual
Michael Guy
Chris Haik
Kay Hodges
LTC John A. LeBlanc
Senator Eric LaFleur
Ann Metrailer
Representative Nickie Monica
Robert Moorman
Senator Dan "Blade" Morrish
Carrie Pena
Stephen Schrempp
Earl Taylor


Staff
Terrell B. Moss, Director

David Evans,
Supervisor/Research Analyst

Katie Walsh, Administrative Assist./Research Analyst

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Deadline Approaching For Citizens' Assessment Rebate

December 31st is the deadline to apply for the rebate available to all who had property insured in 2005 or 2006, upon which a Louisiana Citizens’ assessment was collected through your insurance premium payment.  This would include almost all who had insured residential property and many with insured commercial property.  Citizens, the property insurer of last resort, charged the assessment to cover its policyholders’ catastrophic claims in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.  Almost 70 percent of the homeowners and businesses in the state have failed to collect the rebate made available to them through a law passed following the initial assessment.  Citizens began collecting the assessment through your property insurance premium payment following Katrina in 2005 and will continue to do so until the bonds securing the shortfall are repaid.

“Claiming the rebate is simple,” said Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon. “Just fill out the Louisiana Department of Revenue tax form for the year in which you paid the Citizens Assessment and mail or fax it in with your insurance declaration page showing the assessment has been included in the insurance premium.  The whole process doesn’t take more than ten minutes.”1

Information available at these sites:

  • Louisiana Department of Insurance web site: http://ldi.la.gov
  • Louisiana Department of Revenue web site: http://revenue.louisiana.gov
  • If you don’t have access to a computer, you may contact the Department of Insurance at 800-259-5300 for help.
Source 1: LDI Press Release.  December, 2010

LPCIC Auto Ad Hoc Committee Meeting

The Auto Ad Hoc Committee of the Louisiana Property and Casualty Insurance Commission (LPCIC) met in December at the Department of Insurance. Mr. Stephen Schrempp was appointed Chair by Commissioner Donelon and serving as Vice-Chair is Representative Page Cortez. 

Mr. Richard Hutchinson, Usage Based Insurance Business Leader at Progressive, gave a presentation detailing their Usage Based Insurance plan. The concept of the program is to integrate driving data with traditional rating factors, claims history, vehicle make and model, financial stability, and demographics to determine if the driver is eligible to receive a personalized usage based discount of up to 30 percent. Also accompanying Mr. Hutchinson was Mr. Marty Rarick, Louisiana Product Manager.

Mr. John Broemmelsiek, ITS/Traffic Operations Engineer, U.S. Department of Transportation- Federal Highway Administration, LA Division, presented information on Louisiana's Distracted Driving Task Force. He defined distracted driving, explained the purpose and makeup of the task force, detailed laws concerning distracted driving, and demonstrated what statistics tell us about distracted driving and crashes. 

Captain Scott Silverii, Uniform Division Commander of Lafourche Parish Sheriff's Office, spoke to the Commission about Data Driven Approaches to Crime and Traffic Safety (DDACTS).  His presentation showed that the number of DWI arrests in Lafourche Parish has increased, and the number of alcohol related fatalities in the parish has decreased over the past three years.  Because of the success of this DDACTS program, Captain Silverii has presented this program nationwide.

In closing, Chairman Schrempp explained that the goals of the Auto Ad Hoc Committee include addressing factors to improve driving safety and driving conditions, studying why the cost of auto insurance in LA is so high, and ultimately offer legislative recommendations which will help remedy the problems which impact drivers in the state. The committee plans to meet periodically throughout the year.

Over the River and Through the Woods:
Travel Safely This Holiday Season!

Whether you are visiting friends and family out of state this holiday, or staying close to home, remember to use caution on the roads by following these safe driving tips:

  • Have a qualified mechanic check your vehicle before your winter trip. Be sure the mechanic checks all the vitals: brakes, battery, fluid levels, tire pressure, tire treadwear, windshield wipers and light bulbs. Consult your vehicle owner’s manual to see if the vehicle’s current mileage corresponds to any scheduled maintenance.
  • If you have a long drive ahead of you, and the weather is unsettled, make sure you have emergency equipment: first-aid kit, flashlights, a battery-powered radio, blankets, drinking water, snacks, shovel, jumper cables, ice scrapers, extra cash or credit cards, sleeping bags, facial tissues and paper towels, a tow rope, layered clothing, bright-colored flag material and a sack of sand or cat litter.
  • Get plenty of sleep before a long trip.
  • Have a fully charged cell phone and pack your vehicle phone-charging unit.
  • Make sure all passengers wear their seat belts.
  • Keep the gas tank at least half full all the time.
  • Let someone at your destination know your timetable.
  • Don’t assume the posted speed is safe under anything but dry, clear conditions. On snow or ice, traction generated by your tires is only from one-half to one-tenth as great as you are accustomed to on dry pavement.
  • Be alert for deer near roadways, especially at dawn and dusk.
If you are involved in a vehicle accident, follow these guidelines:
  • Call local law enforcement.
  • Obtain names, phone numbers, insurance policy numbers and addresses of persons involved in the accident, as well as any witnesses.
  • Record the time, date, location and road conditions at the time of the accident.
  • Take notes each time you talk to an insurance company, agent or others involved in the situation.
Happy Holidays!

MERRY CHRISTMAS and HAPPY NEW YEAR from the Louisiana Property & Casualty Insurance Commission members and staff.