Ignoring all the bad jokes about the political problems in France which, you may remember, led to Washington banning French fries from the menu on Capitol Hill, would you rather live in Europe? This may look like one of these no-brainer questions. After all, who would want to give up all the advantages of being American? Except, the courts have recently forced a change which is due to come into force in December 2012. Put simply, the highest courts in Europe have ordered the insurance industry to stop discriminating against men on the ground of their sex. The result will be a distribution of premium payments with women paying more and men getting cheap car insurance. So what's going on and why?
As with everything connected with the insurance industry, it all comes down to statistics. Let's take something as simple as life expectancy. Everyone knows women live longer than men. It's been obvious from the moment humanity learned how to count the days and keep records. So, when it comes to calculating how much a woman should pay into a pension fund, she should pay more because she will need more money. But if we talk about life insurance, she should pay less because it will be longer before the insurer has to pay out and this gives more time for the insurer to make a profit by investing the premiums paid. The statistics also show women drive more safely than men so they currently pay less than all the men who drive faster and crash into each other. Well, the European judges, the majority of whom are men, have decided this discrimination must stop.
Why should we care? Because the statistics show on average that American men pay 12% more than women to insure their vehicles. If you continue the average over a lifetime, American men pay about $15,000 more than women for the privilege of driving. So there you have it. If you are a man, there's no cheap car insurance. Why? Because you are a man. That's discrimination!