Insurance Department Reminds Insurers of Laws Regarding Discrimination Based on Geographic Location

carsImage by Henryk Niestrój

PENNSYLVANIA — Pennsylvania Acting Insurance Commissioner Michael Humphreys is actively reminding property and casualty insurance companies doing business in the Commonwealth that where a motor vehicle is garaged or operated cannot be used in underwriting standards or eligibility requirements. The announcement follows recent media coverage of thefts involving certain model years of Kia and Hyundai motor vehicles.

“Pennsylvania has two laws that protect consumers from discrimination based upon geographic area,” said Humphreys. “Act 68 of 1998 and the Unfair Insurance Practices Act prohibit insurers from canceling, refusing to renew, or refusing to write a motor vehicle insurance policy based on location of the vehicle. We urge insurers to contact the department if they have taken such action since September 1, 2022, on policies covering a Kia or Hyundai automobile, to make sure that any actions taken have been within the scope of Pennsylvania law.”

The Insurance Department encourages any owner of the affected makes and models of the 2010-2021 Kia and Hyundai vehicles to contact the Insurance Department’s Consumer Services online or at 1-877-881-6388 if they believe their insurance company is not operating in compliance with commonwealth laws or regulations or have questions about a plan that has been cancelled or non-renewed.

“We want to make sure consumers have fair access to automobile coverage, to protect themselves and their families when driving in Pennsylvania,” added Humphreys. “Where you live and drive in the Commonwealth should not bar anyone from getting automobile coverage, no matter what make and model of car you own.”

Kia and Hyundai are also providing free software updates for affected vehicles, to address the theft issues and provide a missing key anti-theft device. Consumers should contact Hyundai at 800-633-5151 and Kia at 800-333-4542 for information on the software update.

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“We encourage insurers to join in alerting policyholders to the recently announced software updates,” Humphreys continued. “Policyholders often count on their insurers to provide information on how to mitigate risk, and insurers’ participation in this awareness effort may help ensure these vehicles are better protected against theft.”

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