Sunday, February 01, 2009

More Left Coast activism headed our way?

An effort in California to make health insurance premiums more "fair" for women looks like just the kind of bad idea that would attract Gov. Steve Beshear.

Current law allows individual health insurers in both California and Kentucky to charge higher health premiums for women than for men. It's nothing personal; it's just that women tend to cost more to insure than do men.

California wants to level the playing field, which just means men will be charged more for the same coverage.

In much the same way that the effort to force Kentucky car insurance companies to stop charging higher premiums for people who exhibit certain irresponsible behaviors merely penalizes everyone else, activism here is a bad idea.

When insurance companies don't pay claims their policies require them to pay, government intervention is wholly appropriate. But legislating fair premiums isn't going to magically start working now, just because some politicians have good intentions.

Thanks to InsureBlog for the tip on this one.