Claims and damages for injuries in automobile accidents

Moreover the powers of a state to burden or restrict “interstate commerce,” even where Congress has not exercised its power of regulation, are limited. Interstate commerce “consists in intercourse and traffic, including in these terms navigation and the transportation and transit of persons and property, as well as the purchase, sale and exchange coming in from other states.” And such cars may be subject to compulsion to carry insurance under the laws of their respective home states. But of the many measures for compulsory security yet proposed, nearly all would exempt automobiles coming in from other states (for reasons already indicated). Compare car insurance rates now!

That a compulsory security law would entail a large increase in the public forces now engaged in the registration of automobiles goes without saying. And an examination of the pending measures for compulsory security or insurance shows that under many of them other state departments would be similarly involved. The increase in public expenses and consequently in taxes from these causes would be considerable.

Moreover compulsory security would, as has been previously explained, result in a very large increase in litigation. In Boston, according to an estimate attributed to the Massachusetts Insurance Commissioner, about half the jury cases tried in the courts are for damages for injuries in automobile accidents. In Cincinnati the courts are so flooded with such cases, that one of the Judges of the Superior Court has made the suggestion that the courts should be relieved of this burden by providing for compensation, out of a state fund, to all persons injured in automobile accidents, regardless of fault.

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