HOUSTON – Auto insurers are sitting on a COVID windfall of at least $600 million dollars because of reduced driving during the pandemic. Now, several consumer watchdog groups are asking the Texas Department of Insurance to give that money back to drivers.
KPRC 2 reported in April how several car insurance companies offered rebates to customers averaging about $60. Now, non-profit group Texas Appleseed says those refunds fall way short of what drivers should be getting.
Major findings from Appleseed’s research show:
- Since March, car accidents are down, on average, 43% every week from the same time period last year.
- Nearly one in three of the top 40 auto insurers in Texas are offering no credit or refund to customers.
- Most of those offering no refund are companies serving higher-risk drivers with no credit or low credit scores.
- Some of the bigger companies that are giving money back are only giving discounts when customers renew their policies, taking away their right to comparison shop in order to get back the money they have already paid in unused premiums.
The consumer groups are asking the state to do an industry-wide review of rates and offer immediate relief to consumers where it is warranted. So far, the Texas Department of Insurance has not responded.
These are the auto insurance companies in Texas’ top 40 auto insurers who haven’t given consumers any sort of refund during the pandemic:
- ACCC Insurance Company
- Alinsco Insurance Company
- American Access Casualty
- CEM Insurance Company
- Dairyland County Mutual Insurance Company of Texas
- Insurance Company
- Home State County Mutual Insurance Company
- Loya Insurance Company
- MGA Insurance Company, Inc. (GAINSCO insurance operations conducted through MGA Insurance Company Inc)
- Old American County Mutual
- Fire Insurance Company
- Redpoint County Mutual Insurance Company
- Southern County Mutual Insurance Company (An AmTrust Company)