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Compulsory automobile liability insurance laws may be having the opposite effect that its proponents intended, increasing the number of uninsured motorists rather than reducing it, a new study shows.

The study by the National Assn. of Independent Insurers suggests that mandatory insurance laws actually fail to prompt drivers to buy and keep auto insurance over the long term.

According to the study, in states with compulsory auto insurance laws in place prior to 1976, the estimated growth in the number of uninsured motorists ranged from 6% to nearly 300% from 1976 to 1985.

The study also showed that with a national average uninsured motorist rate of 15% in 1995, the estimated uninsured motorist rate in 13 of the 45 states with compulsory auto insurance laws exceeded the national average, surpassing 20% in five of those states.

The study by the Des Plaines, Ill.-based NAII used statistical data from the years 1976 through 1985, as compiled by the Insurance Research Council.

Based on the experiences of the 19 states that had compulsory auto insurance laws in effect prior to 1976, the study suggested that any benefit of those laws might be lost over a long period of time. In Delaware, for example, which adopted the first compulsory auto insurance law in 1953, the uninsured motorist population grew 297.3% during the period studied.

Of the 12 states that added compulsory auto insurance laws between 1976 and 1984, only four experienced reductions in their uninsured motorist populations, with the highest reduction coming in Nevada, with a 15.4% decline. The other eight states saw the uninsured motorist populations increasing from 3.5% in Ohio up to 57.9% in Oklahoma.

Among the 12 states that adopted compulsory auto insurance laws after 1985, the number of increases and decreases were evenly split, according to the study, with the greatest reduction -- 43.5% -- in Wyoming, and the greatest increase -- 30.2% -- in Nebraska.

Copies of the study are available by calling Diana Lee at the NAII, 847-297-7800, ext. 366.

Exclusion expanded

BENSENVILLE, Ill. -- The American Assn. of Insurance Services has filed endorsements for several personal and commercial lines insurance policies that would exclude coverage or reinforce existing exclusions for losses arising from the failure of computers or related systems to recognize a date or time properly.

The "Calendar Date or Time Failure" exclusions would address the Year 2000 computer problem but would go beyond computer failures associated with the Year 2000 problem to exclude property and liability losses from any failure of a computer to distinguish any date or time, whether it is before or after Jan. 1, 2000.

Courses offered

MALVERN, Pa. -- The American Institute for CPCU and the Insurance Institute of America have introduced a new series of self-contained courses to meet the need for in-depth training on specific insurance topics.

The "Focus Series" offers 14 courses adapted from the institutes' technical insurance information base, each focusing on a single topic, such as business auto insurance, commercial general liability or homeowners underwriting. Each course also is designed to be filed for four hours of continuing education credit.

The courses consist of a participant/student guide that can be used either for independent study or as part of a seminar. In addition, each course includes an instructor's guide that provides material to allow trainers to offer it as a four-hour seminar.

The cost of the participant/student guides for each course ranges from $16 to $21, while the instructor's guides cost from $91 to $123 per course.

To receive a brochure with an order form for the Focus Series materials or to order course guides, call 800-644-2101; e-mail:, or fax 610-640-9576.

LOMA honors Otis

ATLANTA -- International life and health insurance association LOMA will honor Kenneth Otis II, president and chief executive officer of Blue Cross & Blue Shield of North Carolina, at the organization's conference later this month.

For his contributions to ongoing employee education, Mr. Otis will receive the organization's FLMI Insurance Education Award at LOMA's 1998 Annual Conference & FLMI Conferment Sept. 27-29 in Nashville. The annual award recognizes individuals for their contributions to LOMA's Fellow, Life Management Institute program and to insurance industry education as a whole.

Mr. Otis has served both as a member and as chairman of LOMA's Education Council, and he has been a member of LOMA's board of directors.

Nominations sought

AUSTIN, Texas -- The societies of Certified Insurance Service Representatives and Certified Insurance Counselors are seeking nominations for their 1999 Outstanding Customer Service Representative of the Year Award.

The award recognizes customer service representatives who have distinguished themselves as leaders by providing quality service and through their contributions to their agencies, companies, communities and the insurance industry. Nominations can be made by anyone in the insurance industry.

Nominations, including the name, title, agency or company, address and telephone number of the nominee, should be sent to the Society of CISR, P.O. Box 27028, Austin, Texas 78755-1028.