MSE News: Insurance costs to soar as gender discrimination banned

pinkteapot
pinkteapot Posts: 8,038 Forumite
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edited 1 March 2011 at 11:11AM in Insurance & life assurance
This is the discussion thread for the following MSE News Story:

"Car insurance premiums for women under 40 could rocket as they currently pay less than men ..."

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-12606610

Utterly ridiculous. Statistically, men have more accidents. Yet insurers will no longer be allowed to charge them more.

They'll go after hairdressers next and men will have to start paying the same price for a hair-cut as women do. Then there'll be complaints.
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Comments

  • KevinG
    KevinG Posts: 1,863 Forumite
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    Madness is the word - the sheer illogicality of this and its inevitable extensions seem to have passed them by. Why is the EU so anti-consumer? This will just mean higher costs for everyone.
    2kWp Solar PV - 10*200W Kioto, SMA Sunny Boy 2000HF, SSE facing, some shading in winter, 37° pitch, installed Jun-2011, inverter replaced Sep-2017 AND Feb-2022.
  • huckster
    huckster Posts: 4,811 Forumite
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    It is not ridiculous, as basing some of the premium rating on the gender of someone is a bit of generalisation. You cannot decide your gender, so it is bit discrimantory to just be rated highly, because stats may show that younger males have more accidents.

    As for the bit about hairdressers, there are also expensive places where men can go to and there is nothing to stop a women going to a mens barber.
    The comments I post are personal opinion. Always refer to official information sources before relying on internet forums. If you have a problem with any organisation, enter into their official complaints process at the earliest opportunity, as sometimes complaints have to be started within a certain time frame.
  • huckster wrote: »
    It is not ridiculous, as basing some of the premium rating on the gender of someone is a bit of generalisation. You cannot decide your gender, so it is bit discrimantory to just be rated highly, because stats may show that younger males have more accidents.

    I really struggle to understand this logic. What's being able to decide your gender got to do with it? If statistics show that you are a higher risk, then you are a higher risk, end of story. All insurance is based on generalisations (it's called risk pooling) and the most basic pool is gender. Women have lower mortality at all ages, so they are charged less for life insurance. Men have higher motor insurance claims at young ages, so they are charged more. Men don't live as long as women, so they have better annuity rates.

    By having to charge everyone the same we are treating them unfairly, there is no statistical reason for charging the premiums we are going to have to charge. Everyone has lost out today, including insurance companies who are a)a business which is required to make profit for the shareholders and b) very unhappy at having to charge premiums which are not statisticially justified.
  • StevieJ
    StevieJ Posts: 20,174 Forumite
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    edited 1 March 2011 at 11:09AM
    Not many gender law changes manage to p1ss everyone off, men and women. What are they playing at? Having said that it does highlight the benefits many females have had in the past with regard to the state pension, where they received it earlier and lived longer (you will still see women moaning about those changes on this very forum).
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  • starrystarry
    starrystarry Posts: 2,481 Forumite
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    The lunatics are running the asylum.
  • huckster
    huckster Posts: 4,811 Forumite
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    There has been a long debate on this subject with arguments on either side.

    I am of an age where gender does not affect my premiums, but I do feel sorry for younger male drivers, when they are quoted several thousand pounds more a female of the same age. You could have twins aged 18, one boy and one girl, both having identical cars, living at the same address etc, but one is charged a lot more than the other, just because biology has made them a male. This is clearly discrimination.

    I do understand the arguments your make about rating being based on statistics, but I do think there must be a limit applied to how statistics are used. Ultimately courts will decide and they have done so, so I suppose the debate is irrelevant.
    The comments I post are personal opinion. Always refer to official information sources before relying on internet forums. If you have a problem with any organisation, enter into their official complaints process at the earliest opportunity, as sometimes complaints have to be started within a certain time frame.
  • lisyloo
    lisyloo Posts: 29,606 Forumite
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    You could have twins aged 18, one boy and one girl, both having identical cars, living at the same address etc, but one is charged a lot more than the other

    There is a BBC article on just this subject.
    Both passed their test at the same time and have same driving experience.

    So do you think they should ignore the fact that the one with the tesosterone is more likely to try to impress girls, show off the mates etc.
    This is innate behaviour that can be seen on any wildlife documentary.
  • pinkteapot
    pinkteapot Posts: 8,038 Forumite
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    edited 1 March 2011 at 11:22AM
    huckster wrote: »
    It is not ridiculous, as basing some of the premium rating on the gender of someone is a bit of generalisation. You cannot decide your gender, so it is bit discrimantory to just be rated highly, because stats may show that younger males have more accidents.

    This doesn't make sense because everything that affects your insurance premium is a generalisation. Certain cars attract higher premiums, as do certain postcodes. The whole point of insurance is that it makes generalisations about these factors. How else can insurers come up with premiums aside from basing them on statistics?

    Gender is no different. While you are correct that people can't choose their gender, I don't really see the relevance. It's political correctness gone mad.

    As noted on another board, this ruling will have a big effect on pensions, with men likely to receive less than they do currently. I think that any gain for men in terms of their insurance cost when young will be seriously outweighed by their losses during retirement. So do you also think it's wrong for insurers to consider longevity statistics for men and women when it comes to pensions?
  • ElkyElky
    ElkyElky Posts: 2,459 Forumite
    edited 1 March 2011 at 11:24AM
    Since it has been ruled as gender discrimination, won't that open up a can of worms for age discrimination now?

    I'm £2400 to insure both of my cars this year and a faultless driving record. Why should I pay for the other immature idiots on the road who think it's fun to drive the wrong way on a round about? Not all young drivers are bad drivers.
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  • pinkteapot
    pinkteapot Posts: 8,038 Forumite
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    ElkyElky wrote: »
    I'm £2400 to insure both of my cars this year and a faultless driving record. Why should I pay for the other immature idiots on the road who think it's fun to drive the wrong way on a round about? Not all young drivers are bad drivers.

    No, they're not. But insurers don't have crystal balls - they don't know which young driver will crash and which won't.

    What do people think that insurers should base premiums on, if not factors which have been proven to be statistically relevant?
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