Analytics: How can we change OSAGO

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I often hear that OSAGO is another rip-off and the state’s desire to take away our honestly earned money. Apparently, I will incur a million curses, but still I am sure: there should be civil liability insurance!

This type of insurance appeared at the beginning of the last century, and it has long been compulsory in all civilized countries. And it is very sad that our OSAGO appeared late – only at the beginning of this century. After all, had there been such insurance earlier, then perhaps there would not have been those very jokes about Zaporozhets and Mercedes. And hundreds of crippled destinies too.

By the way, back in the 1960s, the USSR Council of Ministers considered several bills on the introduction of compulsory insurance for all car buyers. But there were few cars on the roads then, and the issue of accidents did not acquire such urgency as it is now. Although, as I recently learned, in 1977, a third of all cars in Moscow were somehow protected from theft. When it comes to their hard-earned money, our people quickly grasp the meaning of insurance.

Is there a problem with the modern Russian car insurance system? Enough! For example, we still cannot get out of the car in the event of an accident, exchange business cards with another participant in the accident and drive on. It is necessary to fill out difficult forms, all the while fearing to make a mistake somewhere. However, the introduction of the Euro-Protocol is already a huge step towards civilization. Or have you forgotten that 15 years ago, even in the event of a small scratch, you had to call the traffic police inspector and wait for him half a day (and then still go to the department or pay the arriving traffic cop for getting a “certificate on the spot”).

How about changes in insurance rates that suggest that people at high risk of having an accident should pay more? Rip off again? I believe that this is absolutely correct. If you constantly speed up or play “checkers” on the roads, then why should I – a law-abiding driver – pay the same amount for insurance?

Nevertheless, there are still many questions to OSAGO. And now is the time to speculate in which direction the auto insurance sector can develop. Moreover, not only obligatory, but also voluntary – now I am talking primarily about hull insurance. We often write this word in capital letters, forgetting that Casco is not an abbreviation, it comes from the Spanish casco – “helmet”. Probably the main thing that needs to be done is to work on the fairness of tariffication. Okay, insurance is more expensive for younger drivers than for experienced drivers. But why should the policy cost more if under the hood I have not 100, but 102 horsepower? I don’t understand this. We will not take Ferrari and Bentley, we do not need to bring the vector to the point of absurdity. But why do officials think that the owner of a modern foreign car has a greater risk of getting into an accident than the owner of an old Russian minicar?

Maybe it’s time to pay attention to the factors that really affect safety? For example, the presence and quantity of airbags and stabilization systems in the car? Or do you truly believe that intermittent braking in winter is more reliable than ABS and ESP? And why are there not, say, such items as the presence of a parking aid system (the chance of scratching the bumpers is sharply reduced) or emergency braking functions in the reduction factors?

Let’s already introduce a normal vehicle safety index, which will be calculated not on the engine power, but on much more important factors: the age of the car, the length of the braking distance, the availability of modern accident prevention systems, and so on. Then the price of compulsory motor third party liability insurance for the owner of a modern car “with all the bells and whistles” will be much less than for the owner of an old wreck that came out of a Soviet factory or was driven from a European landfill in the 1990s. And this is true!

Another problem in finding a fair price is the annual mileage of the car.

For example, during the coronavirus lockdown, my car stood motionless for several months. However, I paid for insurance as much as my neighbor, who has already wound almost 40 thousand km in 2020. I insist that it is necessary to introduce a system that takes into account the cost of car insurance depending on the mileage. I drove more, risked more – paid more. Moreover, such “kilometer” insurance options already exist in Russia, but so far only in the hull insurance segment, where there is very high competition for customers.

Also, it would be nice to transfer from voluntary comprehensive insurance to compulsory OSAGO and another way to make the cost of insurance more honest – tracking technology using telemetry of the driving style of a motorist. Do you brake abruptly, accelerate like crazy, enter a corner with a creak of tires? Then it will be logical if you pay a little more than a calm and accurate driver who does not dare to exceed the speed even on an empty highway.

And the main thing. It seems to me that the insurance market in our country is already well developed. And if so, then the state, perhaps, can finally get away from “manual control” and stop regulating tariffs? Let the insurers and drivers in market conditions decide how much the MTPL policy should cost. Then the companies themselves will begin to win the client with the help of technology, service, convenience and reliability. After all, our history over the past hundred years shows that government intervention where the market should rule does not lead to anything good.

PS Editorial position may differ from the views of the author

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