For Immediate Release: December 12, 2016

Insurance Commissioner Wins Case Against $600 Million Rate Increase

RALEIGH -- Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin today announced the North Carolina Supreme Court has refused to hear the insurance industry’s appeal of the North Carolina Court of Appeals decision affirming Commissioner Goodwin’s rejection of a 2014 homeowner’s insurance rate increase of approximately $600 million.

"I am pleased to announce this victory for homeowners and I am proud to continue to protect every consumer in North Carolina,” said Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin. “I rejected the insurance industry’s proposed rate increase because I felt it was unjust and this action will save homeowners hundreds of millions of dollars."

In January 2014, the insurance industry requested a 25.6% increase in homeowner’s insurance rates across the state. That request was rejected by the department and a hearing was held on the filing later that year. In December 2014, Commissioner Goodwin ruled that the industry’s proposed rate increase was unsubstantiated by presented facts and ordered that no increase be awarded. That ruling was appealed by the industry to the North Carolina Court of Appeals, who presented their decision upholding Commissioner Goodwin’s ruling on Aug. 2, 2016.

The North Carolina Supreme Court decided not to hear the case.

The Court of Appeals concluded their decision with "Upon a full review of the Commissioner’s order, we hold the order reflects a careful, thoughtful, and thorough consideration of the evidence. The evidence in the record supports the Commissioner’s critical findings and ultimate conclusions. This Court will not second guess the Commissioner’s determinations as to the credibility of the witnesses or the weight to be given their testimony. Therefore, the order of the Commissioner is affirmed."

A full copy of the Court of Appeal’s ruling can be found here: https://appellate.nccourts.org/opinions/?c=2&pdf=33549

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