State insurance chief rejects hike in homeowner insurance rates


After a months-long hearing, the state insurance commissioner on Monday rejected a request to raise homeowner’s insurance rates by nearly 7 percent for policyholders unable to obtain coverage in the voluntary market, the State House News Service reported.

According to Insurance Commissioner Joseph Murphy, the so-called FAIR Plan failed to demonstrate that “either the values of hurricane losses or the cost of reinsurance included in the rate filing fell within a range of reasonableness and would produce rates that are not excessive.”

The FAIR Plan, seen as an insurer of last resort, provides coverage to more than 40 percent of residences on Cape Cod and the Islands and 12 percent of residences statewide. Companies that write insurance in Massachusetts must participate in the plan and share losses in proportion to their market share.