The battle between collision shops and insurance companies rages on, as Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee has vetoed a bill that would have put insurers in a sticky situation. H7782A, which has been touted as “one-sided legislation”, would have given collision shops the ability to fight against underpaying on behalf of insurance companies. Citing fear that lawsuits would have stifled the insurance industry for the coming years, the Governor felt that a re-draft was necessary to ensure that a fair alternative found its way to his desk.
Heralded as a victory by The Property Casualty Insurers Association of America, the move has not come without dissent. The Auto Body Association of Rhode Island, or ABARI, was one of the leading backers of the bill, and feels that this delivers a blow to small shops and consumers. The organization has gone so far as to claim that Governor Chafee has “bowed to pressure” from the insurance industry, and has allowed the rising rates “scare tactic” often used by the insurance industry to take precedence over consumers.
The ABARI isn’t going down without a fight, however. The organization says that it will be back next year to pick up the fight again, in the hopes of exposing what have been insinuated as “underhanded” techniques that only benefit insurance companies.
While this is another chapter in the continuing fight between insurance companies and collision shops, the fact that consumers are continually cast aside is mildly concerned.