Erie Insurance company files suit against Maryland Insurance Administration

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The insurer is suing over the administration’s race discrimination finding against the carrier.

The Erie Insurance company has filed a federal court lawsuit against the Maryland Insurance Administration’s recent decision that the insurer had been pushing its agents to reject customers from parts of Baltimore where most of the population is Black.

The lawsuit accuses the agency of having conducted an incomplete investigation into the insurer’s practices.

According to the insurance company’s lawsuit, the Maryland Insurance Administration (MIA) did not conduct a complete investigation into the insurer’s practices. Moreover, it also accuses the MIA of having released confidential information on May 24 in a determination letter accusing the company of having been unlawfully discriminatory.

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The insurer is seeking to have the case seen by a federal judge in the hopes that the determination letters will be deemed unlawful, and that the agency had acted in a way that was in violation of the insurer’s constitutional rights.

The MIA’s conclusions were based on “inaccurate and incomplete information,” said a comment emailed by Erie.

The insurance company is also seeking a fresh opportunity to present the MIA with more information.

“In addition to formally requesting a hearing, we filed a federal lawsuit Thursday asking for a full and fair opportunity to present the facts to the MIA,” said a prepared statement from Matthew Cummings, an Erie spokesperson. “We are deeply troubled by the claims made by a few of our agents because we find discrimination of any kind abhorrent and inconsistent with the values that have guided our business for nearly 100 years.”

At the time of the writing of this article, the MIA had not released an official statement on this case.

The determination letters from the MIA had accused the insurance company of using pretextual metrics as rejection justification for eligible customers in Maryland residing in urban areas where populations are primarily minorities. The regulator stated that the insurer had penalized the Baltimore Insurance Network unfairly. That agency serves some of Baltimore’s poorest communities. The investigation into the insurer was launched after complaints were filed in 2021 by the Baltimore Insurance Network and two other agencies.

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