Study finds job, education influence car insurance rates

Apr 3, 2014

A new statewide study reveals the high cost of being of poor. According to an analysis by the New York Public Interest Research Group, big auto insurers charge less educated and lower-tier workers higher rates.

NYPIRG Consumer Advocate Andy Morrison says based on the same criteria, except for education and occupation, a cashier with a high school degree and a flawless driving record was charged 23 percent more than a college educated executive who caused a crash. 

"This is just wrong. Auto insurance rates should be based on how you drive, not who you are. Our analysis shows that insurers are using factors that discriminate against many low and moderate income New Yorkers, the very New Yorkers who can least afford such high rates," Morrison said Thursday on a media conference call.  

Morrison says in each area of the state, prices varied widely based on education and occupation.

In determining rates, he says three out of four insurance companies consider education and two out of four companies consider occupation.

Regardless, Morrison says New York residents pay among the highest auto insurance rates in the nation.