NEW: Group Praises Chafee Decision to Veto Auto Body Bill
Tuesday, June 26, 2012
Governor Chafee last night announced that he was vetoing the controversial last-minute piece of legislation that would have allowed auto body shops to sue insurance companies if they don’t believe the insurers are paying out enough.
Frank O’Brien, vice president state government relations for the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI), released the following statement praising the Governor’s decision.
“Residents in Rhode Island already pay among the highest auto repair bills in the nation and H-7782 A could have driven costs even higher and possibly jeopardized driver safety by forcing vehicles that should have been totaled to be repaired. The bill would have ultimately provided a body shop a blank check to charge whatever it wanted and deprived insurers of the ability to negotiate a fair price by threat of litigation. No other state in America requires such a one-sided arrangement and in the end the consumers would be the ones to lose out.
“This legislation was a dramatic overreach by the body shops. We hope this veto sends a strong message that enough is enough. It is time to put an end to the body shops’ legislative agenda which has caused the average repair cost to accelerate at a rate more than twice the national average.”
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