Supplemental spousal liability bill passes N.Y. state Legislature, moves to governor’s desk

June 12, 2024

The confusion around supplemental special liability coverage that has existed in New York state since last year may be alleviated soon.  

Legislation (A.9407/S9021), which would make important changes to SSL coverage in auto policies, has passed the New York state Assembly and Senate successfully—thus completing its journey through the state Legislature. 

The bill undoes changes made to SSL in 2023. Last year’s bill required most policyholders to opt out of the SSL coverage, which created significant confusion among policyholders, especially those without a spouse. 

What would change 

Under A.9407/S.9021, policyholders would once again need to opt in to SSL coverage for it to appear in their policy—reverting to the pre-2023 requirement. However, there is one notable exception: if the first-named insured indicates on the insurance application that he or she has a spouse, SSL coverage will be included in the policy automatically. The first-named insured still can decline the coverage by providing written notice to the carrier. 

This legislative update aims to simplify the process and reduce confusion, ensuring that SSL coverage is clearly and appropriately offered. 

For more information about SSL, click here

Bradford J. Lachut, Esq.
PIA Northeast

Bradford J. Lachut, Esq., joined PIA as government affairs counsel for the Government & Industry Affairs Department in 2012 and then, after a four-month leave, he returned to the association in 2018 as director of government & industry affairs responsible for all legal, government relations and insurance industry liaison programs for the five state associations. Prior to PIA, Brad worked as an attorney for Steven J. Baum PC, in Amherst, and as an associate attorney for the law office of James Morris in Buffalo. He also spent time serving as senior manager of government affairs as the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, a chamber of commerce serving the Buffalo, N.Y., region, his hometown. He received his juris doctorate from Buffalo Law School and his Bachelor of Science degree in Government and Politics from Utica College, Utica, N.Y. Brad is an active Mason and Shriner.

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