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BCW Joins with Business Group Urging Veto of Wrongful Death Bill

by The BCW

The BCW is among 24 business organizations calling upon Gov. Kathy Hochul to veto legislation that would expand the kinds of damages recoverable in wrongful death actions which would result in driving up liability insurance premiums for public and private entities across the state.

According to an actuarial analysis by Milliman, Inc., the bill would increase medical professional liability costs by nearly 40%. Automobile liability and general liability insurance would also increase. The result would be an 11% increase in annual premiums across the board for residents and businesses.

“Liability insurance premiums are already higher in New York than almost anywhere else in the country. This legislation would make it harder to attract new companies and discourage local entrepreneurs from pursuing their goals and remaining in New York. For businesses already operating in the state, increased liability insurance costs will lead to price increases, pay cuts, and even layoffs – ultimately devastating already-struggling communities,” read the letter to Gov. Hochul. “As we seek to recover from the far-reaching impacts of the pandemic, we must pursue policies that help, rather than harm, the state’s business community. New York cannot afford to adopt new laws that drain our public coffers, discourage entrepreneurship and stifle economic activity,” the letter continues.

In the letter the group also expressed concerns about reports in the New York Law Journal and elsewhere that the bill’s proponents have taken to attacking the credibility of the independent and peer reviewed analysis conducted by actuaries at Milliman, Inc. “Unfortunately, in these polarized times, so-called advocacy organizations and other political actors turn to deception, misdirection, and disinformation when the facts are not in their favor. We look to your office to see through the smokescreen and expect that your decision on this bill will be based on evidence and data – not spin and outright lies”.

Joining the Business Council of Westchester in the letter are: Associated Builders and Contractors Empire State, Associated General Contractors of New York State Big I New York, Buffalo Niagara Partnership, Business Council of New York State, Inc., Capital Region Chamber, Food Industry Alliance of New York State, Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce, Long Island African American Chamber, Long Island Association, Manufacturers Association of Central New York,Medical Society of the State of New York, National Federation for Independent Business, New York Association of Convenience Stores, New York Construction Materials Association, New York State Academy of Family Physicians New York State Builders Association, New York State Health Facilities Association New York State Neurosurgical Society, New York State Society of Anesthesiologists Northeastern Retail Lumber Association, Partnership for New York City and Retail Council of New York State.

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