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This page offers all of Delaware Public Media's ongoing coverage of the COVID-19 outbreak and how it is affecting the First State. Check here regularly for the latest new and information.

Auto insurers return premiums during COVID-19 outbreak

Delaware Public Media

Delaware drivers are getting more relief on their auto insurance during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Delaware Department of Insurance said major companies like Geico and Allstate have agreed to refund or credit prepaid premiums in response.

Delaware Insurance Commissioner Trinidad Navarro cited a decreasing number of claims with fewer drivers on the road as the reason.

“It is impacting our entire lives and not just on the heath side in which fewer people are driving on a daily basis. You know, staying home doing their part trying to flatten the curve,” Navarro said.  “Consequently, there are fewer car accidents. Fewer people driving. The risk associated with driving has been greatly decreased.”

Allstate plans to pay out $1.5 million dollars to First State drivers.  Navarro said commercial use exemptions on private vehicles are also being temporarily removed.  He noted this allows laid off workers to gain income as delivery drivers during the outbreak.

“If you were a cook at a restaurant, maybe you were laid off.  But, you have a car you can deliver food. You’ll be still covered by your insurance,” Navarro said.  “So, those are some things that we ask the insurers to do. And, they’ve stepped up.”

Delawareans already didn't have to worry about policy cancellations because of COVID-19.  Gov. John Carney put them on hold as part of his State of Emergency Order