Oklahoma insurance commissioner John Doak determined that the state’s earthquake market is noncompetitive, which has led to huge premium increases.
Doak, citing insurance data, pointed out that 55% of homes in the region that have earthquake insurance are covered by only four insurers.
The commissioner held a hearing last month to investigate the state of Oklahoma’s earthquake insurance market, reported News9.com.
In recent times, the market saw an increase in rates and deductibles, as well as a reduction in the number of insurers offering earthquake coverage.
“Those things kind of triggered us to take a deeper dive into the earthquake insurance market to make sure that consumers in Oklahoma are being treated fairly,” said Oklahoma Insurance Department (OID) Director of Public Policy and Assistant General Counsel Buddy Combs.
After ruling the state’s earthquake insurance market noncompetitive, Doak issued an order, effectively immediately, requesting insurers to file any rate increase with the OID for approval. Notably, the order does not affect existing policies until their renewal
“We’re taking a look at all these rates and going over them with a fine tooth comb to make sure that they’re right,” remarked Combs.
Thanks to the commissioner’s order, the OID can challenge any rate increase they find excessive and “inappropriate”. Doak hopes that this would help protect Oklahoma’s consumers and make the market more competitive in the future.
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