Nebraska Sends Assignment of Benefits Legislation to Governor

CHICAGO - The Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI) urges Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts to sign legislation (LB 743) which protects consumers by requiring disclosures about the assignment of benefits in roofing contracts.

The bill provides a balanced approach to addressing this issue by creating key disclosure for consumers, ensuring contractors and policyholders can be co-payees on any check from an insurer, and protecting the rights of the mortgagee so roofers cannot step in the shoes of insurance customer.

In recent years unscrupulous trial lawyers and vendors have used assignment of benefits to inflate claims and file costly lawsuits against insurance companies, driving up the cost of insurance for homeowners.  

“Nebraska is taking a positive step forward with this legislation that is deigned to curtail the abusive practices of some contractors and lawyers,” said Hilary Segura, counsel for the PCI. “The trend lines for property insurance in Nebraska, were starting to look like Colorado, Florida and Texas where abusive activity by contractors and lawyers not only drove up the rate of disputed claims and court action, but also overall costs. This legislation does not impact how contractors do their work, but it does provide protection for consumer, so that they don’t sign away their rights to entities, whose main motivation is litigation.”

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PCI is composed of nearly 1,000 member companies, representing the broadest cross section of insurers of any national trade association. PCI members write $216 billion in annual premium, 36 percent of the nation's property casualty insurance. Member companies write 43 percent of the U.S. automobile insurance market, 29 percent of the homeowners market, 34 percent of the commercial property and liability market and 36 percent of the private workers compensation market.