News Releases

2020

Consumer Wins - Edition #1

September 23, 2020

OPIC has held the line during the COVID-19 pandemic so consumers don’t see rate increases. We have raised objections to auto rate increases filed since March 2020. Our efforts have resulted in companies either withdrawing their rate increase, re-filing at lower rates, and/or refunding premium. Together, our work has saved Texas drivers over $5,800,000 since the beginning of the pandemic.

To better assess the impact of COVID-19 on insurance rates, we requested that the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) conduct a special auto data call of the top 10 auto insurance groups in the state.

We also created a COVID-19 FAQ page to help consumers navigate the sea of information during the pandemic and an article with resources for small business owners affected during this difficult time. 

OPIC Creates Hurricane Laura Resource Page

August 28, 2020

We’ve created a web page with information to help you recover after Hurricane Laura. You can also download a copy of our “Filing a Claim After Hurricane Laura” flyer to help you start the claims filing process.

2019-2020 HMO Report Cards Now Available

August 3, 2020

OPIC released its annual Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) reports this week. The reports, Comparing Texas HMOs 2019-2020 and Guide to Texas HMO Quality 2019-2020, provide Texans with consumer satisfaction and quality of care information about HMOs.

OPIC Provides Comments on TDI Consumer Choice Benefit Plan Disclosures Rule

July 15, 2020

OPIC sent comments to the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) regarding their informal draft rules on mental health and substance abuse disorder parity requirements.

OPIC Provides Comments on TDI Mental Health Parity Rule

July 10, 2020

OPIC sent comments to the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) regarding their informal draft rules on mental health and substance abuse disorder parity requirements.

OPIC Requests Special Auto Data Call

June 26, 2020

The Office of Public Insurance Counsel (OPIC) requested that the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) conduct a special data call of the top 10 auto insurance groups in the state to gather information about personal auto claims during the pandemic. OPIC needs the data to fulfill its statutory duty to assess the impact of insurance rates on insurance consumers in Texas and to represent their interests.

TDI Requests Informal Comments on OPIC's Consumer Bill of Rights for Automobile Insurance

March 30, 2020

The Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) is currently seeking comments on an informal working draft of OPIC’s Consumer Bill of Rights for Personal Automobile Insurance. We have updated our Consumer Bill of Rights to be more consumer-friendly and easier to read.

The comment period for this informal working draft closes at 5:00 p.m., central time, on April 29, 2020. Submit comments to the TDI Property and Casualty Lines Office at PropertyCasualty@tdi.texas.gov or call Melissa Herman at 512-676-6728 for more information about this posting.

OPIC Staff to Telecommute due to COVID-19

March 16, 2020

For the health and safety of our staff due to COVID-19, OPIC’s office will be closed. All OPIC functions will continue as our staff will telecommute and check voicemail during regular business hours. We thank you for your understanding. We are still here to serve Texas consumers so please do not hesitate to contact us if you need anything. 

For more information on COVID-19, visit our COVID-19 FAQ page or DSHS website.

OPIC's Kimberly Donovan Named 2020 NAIC Consumer Liaison Representative

January 22, 2020

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) recently announced their 2020 Consumer Liaison Representatives. OPIC’s Chief Policy Analyst, Kimberly Donovan has been appointed as one of the funded Consumer Liaison Representatives. The Consumer Liaison Program “promotes consumer interaction with the NAIC’s members, the insurance industry and interested parties through the individuals’ dedication and commitment to serving the public interest,” an NAIC press release said. 

2019

OPIC Provides Comments on TWIA Rate Recommendation

November 19, 2019

OPIC sent comments to TWIA regarding their 5% rate increase recommendation made on November 19, 2019. OPIC asks TWIA Board to delay rate vote pending additional information regarding the hurricane modelers.

OPIC’s Letter to TWIA

OPIC Creates Claims Handling Information Pages

August 19, 2019

Suffering damage or loss to your home or auto can be stressful. Filing a claim doesn’t have to be. OPIC created pages dedicated to residential property claimsfirst-party auto claims and third-party auto claims. These pages include tips on filing a claim, what to expect during the claims handling process, and what to do if there is a problem with your claim.

OPIC Provides Comments on TWIA Rate Analysis

July 31, 2019

OPIC sent comments to TWIA regarding their rate adequacy analysis on July 31, 2019. We expressed concerns with the methodologies and assumptions used, and that TWIA’s overall rate indication is inflated.

TWIA Rate Adequacy Analysis Letter