Auto insurance bills skyrocket in Georgia but regulator powerless

Georgia led the nation with the highest increase in personal auto insurance rates in 2016, according to a new analysis, but rising rates is nothing new for the state's drivers.

Georgia ranked either first or second nationally for increases in the three previous years, too.

State Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens said there is little he can do about skyrocketing rates because of a law passed a decade ago that makes it almost impossible for the government to stop such increases. Hudgens voted for the law while serving in the Georgia Senate, and he says he has no regrets about supporting it.

In the new normal, double-digit jumps and two increases a year have become routine. The biggest hike among the state's large insurers hit last year, when Allstate imposed a stunning 25 percent average rate boost.

To read more about rising rates and the state's response, or lack of one, check out our story on