Downing’s HB 379 Signed by Governor

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On Monday, Commissioner Troy Downing’s legislation, House Bill 379 to revise non-discriminatory rate-setting, carried by Representative Sue Vinton, was signed into law by Governor Gianforte in a ceremony at the Capitol.

HB 379 revises laws for non-discriminatory rate setting in insurance and will allow insurance companies to consider a person’s sex and marital status when rating insurance premiums. According to Commissioner Downing, “Since 1985, Montana has been the only state in the nation that prohibited this practice in all lines of insurance. Not allowing the consideration of sex in rate-making has artificially inflated insurance premiums for women, particularly in life and auto insurance.”

This legislation has broad support from industry and consumers. HB 379 is a crucial piece of the Downing administration’s strategy to lower insurance costs and make Montana more competitive nationally. “This bill helps consumers, helps businesses, and promotes a more competitive marketplace.” Downing continues, “As I traveled the state, local agents complained that they were losing business to states with standard rating criteria. Let’s help main street Montana by bringing that business home, where it belongs.”

According to  Peter Daniel Sullivan, Sullivan Financial Group, Helena, “My female clients regularly pay dramatically more in Montana for the same policy than any other American female. According to the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA), Montana’s most recent survey across 19 different life insurance companies, a 55 year old female buying a $500,000, twenty-year term life policy and receiving standard rates, pay on average 31% more cost than Californians, New Yorkers, Texans, etc. “

House Bill 379 takes effect on January 1, 2022. 

Read the Bill HERE