father told me what I had to pay for the year. I was a secondary driver under my father’s vehicle and I was only 16, but that amount sure stood with me for a long time. Nearly $400 for the year as a secondary occasional driver seemed like quite a bit, but when it was compared to some of my female friends it was much worse.
Being a male I had to contend with the fact that insurance companies were sexist when it came to premium amounts. Sure male drivers back in the 90’s were more likely to street race and take more chances with entering and changing lanes in traffic. But really not the tune of nearly double that than my female counterparts. My female friends were only paying between $120 - $180. So to myself I felt that I was being ripped off and being judged before the fact. But that was a standard part in being a young male in my day.
After a bit of digging on the then pre-google internet, I found that most insurance companies of the day always charged males more than females. And risk was there fight with us, as we tended to take more risk than our female counterparts. Not happy with that response I decided to go one step further and check the stats of accidents between male and female drivers under 25. Seems rather odd as my findings found that male and female drivers were only separated by a 12% margin when it came to accidents. That seems rather odd as the premiums are nearly 50% different between the two sexes. So I decided to go one step further and contact my insurance company. After giving them the bad news that they were ripping me and many other male drivers off, they gladly explained the same information as before, that me and my male counterparts partake in more racing activities and take more risk than females. I again stated the facts that the margin between accidents was only a 12% difference. But again they stated the racing activities. Guess I won’t win this battle.
Nowadays with all the gender centralization and #metoo going around, it just seems odd that insurance companies would still be getting away with this practice. But I up until recently they were, as my wife’s insurance premium states that she too was benefiting from being a female. Her insurance premium being a primary driver with only 4 years of full experience is still less than mine was when I had the same. But I guess when your older and have a family they think you’re not likely to take as many risks. But today things are changing and changing for the good, as the great state of California is changing the rules on insurance premiums. They are making it so that insurance companies can no longer base your insurance premiums on your gender. This makes it the first state to do so and it will make a lot more males happier. And keeping with that, this will make California a trend leader in the world of insurance.
This also comes as great news to both males and females, since no company can discriminate against you for being either a male of a female. Along with this it will no longer matter if your sex has changed as to what you pay for insurance as well. This fact will bode well for certain people as now it no longer matters and you won’t have sticker shock when you become who you want to be.
But in the end you have to ask yourself who will be getting the increase in their premiums. Think about that as females generally pay less than their male counterparts so are companies going to be increasing their premiums or decreasing the male amounts. I guess only time will tell on this part.
As more people push for gender neutral treatment, it just seems that more and more companies will be following suit as well. Next we will have to push against companies who discriminate against young drivers and charge them massive premiums over their parents. For me this was true, as my fathers provider did not like insuring anyone under the age of 45 and made me pay for it. Creating a comparable rate between companies would be more beneficial, but in the end it all comes down to company policies and government interaction. This came too late for me, but I hope that it won’t come too late for my children.
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