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N.Y. Rolls Out Welcome Mat For Telematics

Robert Easton, executive deputy superintendent for N.Y. Dept. of Financial Services, says his office is inviting usage-based insurance filings.

For insurers looking to leverage telematics-powered usage-based insurance, developing the product can be seen as the easy part. More difficult is getting those products in front of consumers. The state-based insurance regulatory system in the U.S. insurance marketplace can be daunting when it comes to new product introductions.

But at least one state is publicly professing its desire to make usage-based insurance a reality. At yesterday's P&C Joint Industry Forum at Manhattan's Waldorf-Astoria hotel, Robert Easton, executive deputy superintendent of the insurance division in New York's Department of Financial Services, said the state is "bullish on usage-based insurance."

"We've been reaching out to companies inviting filings," Easton says. "The governor (Andrew Cuomo) in particular is very big on preventing distracted driving."

The idea, Easton explains, is that telematics programs can come with technology that helps mitigate distracted driving. Governor Cuomo issued a statement supporting Esurance's DriveSafe program late last year.

[Read other reasons why text disablement can be a gateway to UBI adoption and see what the technology looks like inside a car]

In addition to UBI, New York insurance regulators are following closely how companies are adopting to new enterprise risk management rules and reporting requirements, Easton says. The state also hopes that the Terrorist Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) is renewed soon though "we realize this is more than a New York issue," Easton said.

Nathan Golia is senior editor of Insurance & Technology. He joined the publication in 2010 as associate editor and covers all aspects of the nexus between insurance and information technology, including mobility, distribution, core systems, customer interaction, and risk ... View Full Bio

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