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Law Department

Jim Whittle small.jpg
James Whittle
Assistant General Counsel & Chief Claims Counsel

James (“Jim”) Whittle serves as associate general counsel and chief claims counsel at the American Insurance Association. Mr. Whittle is responsible for automobile, catastrophe, claims, and property issues. He has over two and a half decades of experience in these areas, both with AIA and in corporate and private practice.

Mr. Whittle’s work product can be found in regulations, legislation, and court decisions across the country. He is widely recognized as an expert in the legal, regulatory, and public policy implications of motor vehicle use and catastrophes such as Hurricane Katrina and Superstorm Sandy. He is a sought-after speaker and has appeared widely in print, radio, and televised media. He has been a featured presenter at leading conferences and has testified repeatedly in front of regulators, legislators, and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).

A long-time litigator before he left private practice, Mr. Whittle is a Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent® rated Lawyer. He is admitted to bars of the District of Columbia, Maryland, and United States Supreme Court.

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More from James Whittle

AIA's Jim Whittle discusses liability for autonomous vehicles in The Wall Street Journal

March 21, 2018 - “They are competitors, so understandably they often don’t talk publicly about this, but we do know insurance companies are engaged with developers, trying to help them reduce their liability exposure,” said Jim Whittle, associate general counsel for the American Insurance Association...

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AIA's Jim Whittle explains why certain factors contribute to rising auto rates in Washington in The Columbian

March 5, 2018 - “There definitely have been some negative changes in Washington over the last several years in what we call severity and frequency,” said Jim Whittle, associate general counsel for the American Insurance Association....

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AIA's Jim Whittle explains the data insurers use when setting premiums in ValuePenguin

February 21, 2018 - Insurers compete on price by using a variety of non-experiential variables that have statistically relevant correlations to potential risk. Such variables are predictive in nature. Their purpose is simple—to help insurers seek as accurate an assessment [as possible] of future, potential losses, so they have higher confidence that their rates most accurately reflect risk. Consumers can, of course, shop for the best product for them based on premium and levels of coverage....

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AIA's Jim Whittle explains why driver safety technologies don't always lead to lower rates with Popular Mechanics

February 9, 2018 - “U.S. insurers must also demonstrate [i.e., show statistical proof] that their rates meet acceptable levels of accuracy,” says Jim Whittle, associate general counsel at the American Insurance Association. “They have to demonstrate the premiums are not inadequate, excessive or unduly/unfairly discriminatory. And they must show it through experience.”...

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AIA's Jim Whittle discusses the increase in car crash frequency and severity in CTV Vancouver

February 1, 2018 - Whittle said the growing cost of vehicle repairs could be a factor, but added that an economic boom means the average driver is spending more time in their car, increasing their likelihood of being involved in an accident....

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AIA's Jim Whittle promotes insurers' work to help Californians recover on KPCC Radio

January 29, 2018 - "Insurers are working aggressively to adjust residents' claims and fast-track their recovery. We appreciate the Commissioner's continuing communications with our industry, and we agree that the cause of each loss will be an important consideration in handling claims appropriately."...

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AIA's Jim Whittle talks credit-based insurance scores with the Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star

November 24, 2017 - Jim Whittle, associate general counsel for the American Insurance Association, defended the practice in an interview, calling credit scores a “useful and proven” way to assess a person’s risk. He added that some insurance companies place more weight on a person’s credit than others....

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Jim Whittle discusses the impact of home delivery apps on homeowners insurance in the Detroit Free Press

November 8, 2017 - "It's a new development, so we don't have a lot of current experience with this," said Jim Whittle, assistant general counsel of the American Insurance Association in Washington D.C. "Does it make the house more risky? Does it make the house less risky?"...

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AIA’s Jim Whittle Explains Hurricane-Related Business Interruption to CNBC

September 11 - “Business interruption coverage typically covers physical damage and may apply to shutdowns, revenue losses and to pay fixed costs like salaries and health care for employees who can't work in a natural disaster”, Whittle told CNBC....

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AIA's Jim Whittle discusses insurers' use of drones after Hurricane Harvey in the Associated Press

September 4, 2017 - Most major insurers now have a fleet of drones, and the technology has become so inexpensive that even smaller companies are beginning to use it, according to Jim Whittle, chief claims counsel for the American Insurance Association. He said the benefits were evident in the response to Hurricane Matthew. “If you had a good line of sight, for example, but you were stopped by nature or law enforcement from entering an area, you could put a drone in the area and get access to that property,” he said. “That could demonstrate immediately that that was a property that had considerable wind damage, let’s say, and allow the insurer to cut a check.”...

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AIA's Jim Whittle discusses the role of the contractor in consumer affairs investigations in New Jersey Star-Ledger

July 17, 2017 - While Dixon filed a new complaint with Consumer Affairs, we asked several insurance organizations if it's common practice to take the word of a contractor and not ask the homeowner if the homeowner is satisfied with the job before paying money out. "It is customary for the adjuster to deal with the homeowner rather than the contractor," said Jim Whittle of the American Insurance Association. "Situations can differ and there may be instances when an insurer deals with the contractor but most of the time, an adjuster deals with the homeowner."...

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AIA's Jim Whittle discusses the effect of driverless cars on auto insurance policy in the Seattle Times

June 19, 2017 - “We’re taking a sort of existing body of law and we’re applying that body of law to new facts,” said Jim Whittle, an associate general counsel for the American Insurance Association....

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