July 14, 2020

Just Auto Insurance and Smartcar partner to bring prepaid car insurance to Arizona

Charlotte Kosche

Sr. Content Writer

Just Auto Insurance and Smartcar are partnering to provide fair and affordable prepaid insurance to drivers in Arizona. Just uses the Smartcar API to improve customer convenience, lower underwriting costs, and reduce premium leakage.

Affordable prepaid insurance

Just Auto Insurance offers affordable prepaid liability car insurance via the Just mobile app. Like other usage-based insurance (UBI) companies, Just charges customers based on their mileage and driving habits. What’s unique about Just is their flexible prepaid business model and the continuous feedback loop to its customers; drivers add a minimum of $30 to their account to get insured and then top up whenever they need to. After each car trip, the trip’s cost gets deducted from the driver’s balance. Finally, customers can lower their per-mile rate every 30 days by improving their driving habits.

In addition to paying only for the miles they drive and getting a lower rate for driving safely, Just makes purchasing insurance fast and easy. Customers simply download the mobile app and sign up in less than a minute. Just doesn’t require drivers to provide detailed information like a credit score.

Seamless and accurate mileage verification

Smartcar’s mileage verification API allows Just to price risks more accurately, lower underwriting costs, and reduce premium leakage while maintaining the Just mobile app’s seamless user experience. Just customers can connect their vehicles and share their odometer reading with just three clicks from the Just mobile app. Just then retrieves the customer’s monthly mileage directly from the vehicle’s instrument cluster.

Just drivers need to connect their vehicle only once, benefitting from a seamless all-digital user experience. Smartcar’s technology allows Just to achieve the most accurate mileage measurement in the market, without the need for expensive aftermarket hardware or manual mileage reporting.

“Our partnership with Smartcar further emphasizes Just Auto Insurance’s thought leadership and technical superiority in the auto insurance market,” said Just Co-Founder, CTO, and COO Murray Macdonald. “Smartcar’s modern and well-documented SDKs and APIs were a perfect match for our customer-focused mobile app and best-in-class scoring engine. With this partnership, we continue to provide new and innovative ways to make auto insurance fairer and more affordable for everyone.”

The need for fair and affordable insurance

The Just and Smartcar partnership comes at a time when increasing costs and unfair practices call for a change in the auto insurance industry.

Personal auto insurance prices are skyrocketing. Premiums in the U.S. have increased by nearly 30% since 2011, with rates increasing as much as 86% in some states. Price is the primary reason why car owners switch insurance providers.

Besides increasing prices, auto insurance premiums can often seem unfair. In addition to basic factors like driving history and car model, many insurers take into account so-called non-driving factors such as a driver’s credit score, marital status, level of education, and occupation. Improving one’s credit score by one tier, for example, can cause an insurance premium to decrease by as much as 17%. Although a driver’s mileage correlates with the number of claims they file, mileage has little effect on insurance rates because it is difficult to verify.

Just co-founders Murray Macdonald and Robert Smithson noticed these unfair practices and set out to make auto insurance more accessible and affordable for everyone. Since then, Just has worked to save drivers money and to improve road safety. The company is particularly focused on insuring uninsured drivers from underserved and low-income communities, who are usually quoted higher premiums by insurance providers.

As Murray and Robert were looking for a way to easily and accurately verify their customers’ mileage, they discovered Smartcar’s technology.

“We’re glad that Just is seeing and solving these problems,” said Smartcar CEO Sahas Katta. “A car owner’s insurance premium shouldn’t depend on non-driving factors like their credit score. Instead, they should be charged fairly based on their actual monthly mileage. Just is pioneering the affordable telematics-based insurance market, and it’s an honor for Smartcar to partake in this journey.”

Just Auto Insurance is available to vehicle owners in Arizona starting this week, with plans to expand to other U.S. states in the near future.

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