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03/29/2020 03:11 AM
Pennsylvania State Senate
https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/Legis/CSM/showMemoPublic.cfm?chamber=S&SPick=20190&cosponId=30629
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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session

MEMORANDUM

Posted: November 6, 2019 12:04 PM
From: Senator Daniel Laughlin
To: All Senate members
Subject: Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility
 
In the near future, I will be introducing legislation that increases the minimum amount of insurance a person would be required to carry on an automobile policy. Motor vehicle insurance was mandated in 1974. Pursuant to that law, a person is required to carry a minimum amount of insurance: $15,000 for bodily injury per person ($30,000 per accident) and $5,000 in property damage.

Unfortunately, during the forty years since this law was enacted, consumer costs have skyrocketed. In fact, according to the consumer price index, prices have increased 409% since 1974. This means that for today’s dollar to equal the value of a dollar in 1974, the original minimum auto insurance limits of $15,000/$30,000/$5,000 would have to be increased to $76,402/$152,803/$25,467.

To put this information into perspective, when this law was enacted, the average cost of an automobile was $3,750 – the limits of $15,000/$30,000/$5,000 made sense. Forty years later, the average cost of a car is now $35,285. Additionally, in 1974, Kellogg’s corn flakes were 43 cents, a can of Pepsi Cola was 88 cents and a 1.4-ounce Hershey candy bar was only 15 cents.

Almost every other state has increased their limits since their original enactment; several have increased their limits more than once. Pennsylvania’s inaction has granted us the dubious distinction of having the second lowest limits in the entire country (Florida has $10,000/$20,000/$10,000). This legislation would increase our minimum limits to $30,000 per person/$60,000 per accident and $10,000 for property damage.

Please join me in co-sponsoring this important legislation to increase the minimum amount of insurance a person would be required to carry on an automobile policy.



Introduced as SB966