(LOS ANGELES, Nov. 30, 2006) — As an early holiday gift to policyholders, the Automobile Club of Southern California's affiliated insurance company is reducing auto insurance rates by an average seven percent starting December 1 for new and renewing policyholders. Current policyholders will receive the new rates as their policies are renewed. At the same time, the Auto Club's insurance affiliate will implement new Department of Insurance regulations that reduce the effect of where someone lives, the first insurer in the state to do so.
The rate reduction, approved by state insurance commissioner John Garamendi in September, should save nearly one million policyholders a total of $133 million or an average of $134 per policy. The Auto Club's insurance affiliate, the fourth largest auto insurer in the state, was able to reduce rates due to a reduction in the number of bodily injury, property damage and collision claims.
The amount of the adjustment to individual policies will vary, depending upon the type of coverage, applicable discounts and type of car. With this reduction, the Exchange has reduced rates by nearly 29 percent since 1990.
"In addition to reduced claims costs, we've continued to work hard at reducing operating costs and improving efficiency," said Jim Gilmartin, senior vice president of insurance operations. "For the fifth consecutive year, the Interinsurance Exchange of the Automobile Club was ranked in the top five nationally for overall customer satisfaction in auto insurance by a leading consumer satisfaction study."
In 1991, the Auto Club's insurance company became the first major insurer to provide rebates to policyholders as required by Proposition 103. "Then and now, we saw a way to work within the regulations and continue to offer competitive rates to members," added Gilmartin.
The Automobile Club of Southern California, the largest member of the AAA federation of motor clubs, has been serving Southern California since 1900. Today, the Auto Club's members benefit by roadside assistance, insurance products and services, travel agency, financial products, automotive pricing and buying programs, automotive testing and analysis, trip planning services and highway and transportation safety programs. Information about these products and services is available on the Auto Club's Web site at www.AAA.com.