For years, the Texas Department of Insurance has rightfully stood by Texas consumers and rejected policies with dangerous binding arbitration clauses. But, a policy recently submitted to TDI would strip unaware consumers of their constitutional rights in exchange for a small discount. This month, we talked to Deeia Beck, executive director of the Office of Public Insurance Counsel, about the dangers lurking in the submitted policy.
Arbitration Clause Made Public. It's As Bad As We Thought
After fighting the release of documents related to its request to add pre-dispute arbitration to its home insurance policies, Texas Farm Bureau Insurance relented. So, now the public can see firsthand what the company is up to.
You can see for yourself below, but here are the highlights:
State Policyholder Advocate Opposes Arbitration Proposal
The Office of Public Insurance Counsel has weighed in opposing a proposed pre-dispute binding arbitration provision currently under consideration by the state insurance commissioner. OPIC is the state office tasked with representing policyholders in rate and form filing decisions.
In her letter to Commissioner David Mattax, Public Counsel Deeia Beck writes of arbitration generally:
Don't Sell Our Rights, Commissioner
The Texas insurance commissioner is considering an industry proposal that would allow an insurance company to buy your legal rights for a few dollars a month.
This is unprecedented. Never has the insurance department approved a request to allow an insurance company to include what is called a pre-dispute binding arbitration clause in its policies. In fact, it has been part of the agency's published guidelines to reject any insurance policy that includes such language.
Why Isn't TDI Asking About Insurance Company Misconduct?
The Texas Department of Insurance is asking questions. But, it's what they aren't asking that's the problem.
Insurance lobby groups are pointing to the number of consumer complaints filed with the Texas Department of Insurance as "evidence" that consumers are happy with their insurance companies. But, 75% of consumers filing complaints with TDI in 2015 were never counted.
Today on Texas Tells, families and businesses across North Texas are attempting to rebuild after the severe holiday storms. But, some roofers and builders are being less than honest. Today, we’ll talk to consumer watchdog and Dallas Morning News columnist Dave Lieber about the scams some roofers and builders are pulling across North Texas.
The New Texas Watch Website
5 Things to Know When Filing a Wildfire Insurance Claim
Firefighters continue to bravely battle the Hidden Pines wildfire in Bastrop County with 80% of the fire contained. The fire has already damaged or destroyed dozens of residential and commercial properties. As families and businesses begin the process of rebuilding, here are some tips for property owners when dealing with their insurance company.
Demand that your insurer hold up its end of the deal.