Heading into the 2015 state legislative sessions there was no doubt what issue would be the most closely tracked and worked on by the property/casualty insurance industry: insurance coverage requirements for transportation network companies.
Executive SummaryInsurance issues that call for national consistency often are addressed through extensive deliberations at the NAIC and the NCOIL, but issues surrounding TNC coverage proved to be an exception in 2015, reports NAMIC CEO Chuck Chamness. Here, Chamness reveals the specifics of a compromise worked out between Uber, Lyft and three insurance trade associations.
Legislative debates in a handful of states during 2014 provided an indication of how the issue would likely play out. The lines were clearly drawn. On one side were those who wanted to legitimize a new transportation option while ignoring insurance coverage issues. On the other were those wanting to ensure that drivers, passengers and pedestrians would be protected under an appropriate insurance framework.
With the major TNCs like Uber and Lyft presenting a very different perspective than that of the P/C insurance industry regarding the particulars of appropriate insurance requirements to be placed in statute, a contentious state-by-state battle of the ages emerged in 2015. No less than 36 states saw legislation introduced within the first three months of the year, and in many cases there were sharp differences between versions backed by the TNCs and those supported by the insurance industry. It looked at that point as though the balance of the legislative sessions would require the expenditure of considerable time and energy to hammer out resolutions in each individual state.