AGRR Magazine

Washington Anti-Steering Legislation One Step Away From Law

The Washington Independent Glass Association anti-steering legislation only has to clear one more hurdle to become law after the state's House of Representatives passed it by a vote of 95-0 last Wednesday and Lt. Gov. Brad Owen signed it on Friday.

Tom Grim, general manager of All-Star Auto Glass in Seattle and one of the key supporters of the legislation, expects Gov. Chris Gregoire to sign the bill into law later this week. "The only thing that could slow it down is if someone gets to the governor before she signs the bill," Grim says.

The final bill requires that a third-party administrator (TPA) inform customers that they have the right to choose a retail glass shop. It also mandates that call center representatives tell customers that the TPA is a separate entity from their insurer. Any glass retailer owned by an insurer or TPA will also have to inform the consumer of that relationship through a written notice posted at the facility if the bill is passed.

While the bill's language will give the customer insight into the TPA-insurer relationship, it doesn't pack the same punch as the association's original bill. That legislation wouldn't have allowed companies to serve as both a TPA and auto glass retailer. Grim says the insurance lobby lobbied hard against the original version of the bill.

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