Salt Lake City, UT (WiredPRNews.com) Both houses of the Utah State Legislature have overwhelmingly thrown their support behind a bill that would remove local municipalities’ ability to charge drivers set fees for publicly funded emergency response to a car accident. By approving the bill, Utah becomes the 11th state to pass legislation that puts restrictions on the implementation of these emergency-response fees, which have come to be known within the auto insurance industry as “crash taxes.”
Emergency-response fees have become increasingly prevalent as local municipalities across the country have had to tighten their belts in response to declining tax revenues. The fees are viewed as a way for public safety departments to reclaim some of the expenses made in the course of responding to car accidents.
With the fees, though, has come boisterous opposition. Some say that they amount to double taxation: taxpayers shell out the cost for the fees either directly if their coverage providers don’t cover the added costs or indirectly if they do. The indirect charges come through higher insurance premiums. Part of the answer to the question of how much is car insurance depends on the average claims size in a given area. If insurers start routinely paying for the fees, the average price of a policy could be pushed upward.
But Utah’s bill isn’t actually a complete ban on the fees. It instead limits the types and amount of fees that can be collected. If it is signed into law, municipalities would only be able to bill drivers and their insurers for the expenses on care and transportation of individuals, repair to public property and the cost of materials used for cleanup of the scene. Further, the fees would be limited to the actual costs of these services.
To learn more about this and other issues affecting the price of auto insurance, readers can go to http://www.onlineautoinsurance.com/quotes/how-much-car-insurance-costs.htm where visitors will find informative resource pages and a free-to-use quote-comparison generator that can help consumers find the cheapest rates quickly.