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PHILIP V. MATTES AND MARK B. PHILLIPS v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (12/27/85)

decided: December 27, 1985.

PHILIP V. MATTES AND MARK B. PHILLIPS, ON BEHALF OF THEMSELVES AND OTHERS SIMILARLY SITUATED, PETITIONERS
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, WILLIAM R. MUIR, JR., IN HIS OFFICIAL CAPACITY AS INSURANCE COMMISSIONER OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA ET AL., RESPONDENTS



Original Jurisdiction in the case of Philip V. Mattes and Mark B. Phillips, on behalf of themselves and others similarly situated v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, William R. Muir, Jr., in his official capacity as Insurance Commissioner of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, et al.

COUNSEL

Roger Mattes, with him, Philip V. Mattes, Raymond W. Ferrario and Robert A. Burke, Mattes, Mattes & Mattes, P.C., for petitioners.

Hannah Leavitt, Chief of Litigation, and Paul Laskow, Chief Counsel, for respondent, Insurance Department.

Jeffrey A. Less, with him, A. Richard Feldman, Bazelon, Less & Price, for respondent, The Insurance Federation of Pennsylvania, Inc.

Jered L. Hock, Metzger, Wickersham, Knauss & Erb, for respondent, Balboa Insurance Company.

H. Lee Roussel, with him, Jeffrey B. Clay, McNees, Wallace & Nurick, for respondents, Seven (7) insurance companies.

James J. McCabe, with him, Jane Dalton Elliott and David E. Loder, Duane, Morris & Heckscher, for respondents, 234 insurance companies.

President Judge Crumlish, Jr. and Judges Rogers, Craig, MacPhail, Doyle, Colins and Palladino. Opinion by President Judge Crumlish, Jr.

Author: Crumlish

[ 94 Pa. Commw. Page 2]

The Commonwealth, the Insurance Federation of Pennsylvania, Inc. (Federation), and 239 defendant insurance companies*fn1 preliminarily object to the class action brought in this Court's original jurisdiction by Philip V. Mattes and Mark B. Phillips.

In Hartford Accident and Indemnity Co. v. Insurance Commissioner, 505 Pa. 571, 482 A.2d 542 (1984), a decision resulting from administrative proceedings instituted by Mattes, our Supreme Court held that sex-based rating of automobile insurance violates the statutory prohibition against "unfairly discriminatory" rates*fn2 and upheld this Court's affirmance of the

[ 94 Pa. Commw. Page 3]

Insurance Commissioner's order. That order directed that the automobile insurance rating plan of Hartford Accident and Indemnity Company, insofar as it contained sexual classifications, would no longer be effective in one year. Thereafter, the Commissioner issued a policy statement directing the insurance companies to file, for his review, sex neutral rating plans with effective dates of no later than January 1, 1986.*fn3 Shortly before the policy was announced, Mattes and Phillips brought the instant class action requesting this Court to order (1) the insurance companies to file sex neutral rates, (2) that the rates be retroactive to July 2, 1978 and that the insurance companies refund all premiums paid since that date by the class of ...


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