Insurance department: Louisiana drivers to save $187 million amid COVID-19 pandemic

By David Jacobs | The Center Square

Louisiana drivers will benefit from more than $187 million in automobile insurance rebates and rate reductions, the state Department of Insurance says.

Insurers will return about $10.5 billion to their customers nationwide, according to an Insurance Information Institute estimate. The III counted more than $8 billion in announced reductions and refunds as of April 13 then estimated the additional amount that could be forthcoming if other insurers followed suit.

The companies offering rebates or reductions in Louisiana control about 92 percent of the state’s market, the state insurance department says. The list includes insurers of private passenger vehicles that have announced or provided the state insurance department with details of a rebate or reduction program as of Wednesday afternoon, the department says.  

“This list includes 13 of the top 20 auto insurers doing business in Louisiana and it is my hope that the other seven auto insurers will follow suit in this time of crisis for their policyholders brought on by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic,” Louisiana Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon said.

Because many drivers mostly have been staying home, they’re traveling fewer miles, leading to fewer accidents. Auto insurers say they are sharing their savings with consumers. Savings in Louisiana range from 15 percent to 30 percent, usually for two months, though one company is offering a flat $50 rebate.

Louisiana’s auto insurance rates are among the highest in the country. Many lawmakers and business advocates blame the state’s legal climate, though skeptics say there is no proven link between tort reform, which often limits citizens’ access to the courts and the amounts plaintiffs can receive, and the cost of auto insurance.

Here is the list of companies providing rebates and discounts in Louisiana so far, according to the state insurance department:

Group/Company2019 Written Premium2019 Market ShareCOVID-19 Related Return Premium# Months Return PremiumProjected Return Premiums
STATE FARM GRP$ 1,442,012,58029.5%25%2.37$ 71,099,231
PROGRESSIVE GRP$ 803,097,94416.4%20%2$ 26,769,931
BERKSHIRE HATHAWAY (GEICO)$ 571,941,64011.7%15%6$ 42,895,623
ALLSTATE INS GRP$ 540,137,65511.1%15%2$ 13,503,441
USAA GRP$ 294,072,2696.0%20%2$ 9,802,409
FARM BUREAU GRP$ 262,659,5155.4%15%2$ 6,566,488
LIBERTY MUT GRP$ 197,963,5544.1%15%2$ 4,949,089
GOAUTO INS CO$ 163,079,5833.3%15%2$ 4,076,990
SHELTER INS GRP$ 69,820,6821.4%30%2$ 3,491,034
METROPOLITAN GRP$ 41,273,1850.8%15%2$ 1,031,830
KEMPER CORP GRP$ 33,705,4620.7%15%2$ 842,637
HARTFORD GRP$ 26,937,5390.6%15%2$ 673,438
HANOVER INS GRP$ 20,640,2800.4%15%2$ 516,007
AMERICAN FAMILY GRP$ 14,207,6870.3%$50.00**$ 256,500
FARMERS INS GRP$ 7,170,6090.1%25%2$ 298,775
AMICA MUT GRP$ 4,901,6550.1%20%2$ 163,389
CHUBB LTD GRP$ 4,819,4460.1%35%2$ 281,134
TRAVELERS GRP$ 1,276,2890.0%15%2$ 31,907
TOTAL ALL COMPANIES$ 4,458,444,38992.1%  $ 187,24