NU Online News Service, Jan. 18, 2:34 p.m. EST

Louisiana’s last-resort insurer has filed an average nine percent rate increase request with the state’s insurance department for personal lines risks, including homeowners, mobile homes, dwelling and tenant risks.

Louisiana Citizens Homeowners Market ShareRichard Robertson, CEO of Louisiana Citizens Property Insurance Corp., said the state-run insurer is legally mandated to make a filing once a year. It does the filing by comparing market and actuarial insurance rates in each parish in the state, adding 10 percent, and then selecting whichever rate is the highest.

Mr. Robertson said the increase request this year is based in part on increases in the private insurance market.

The filing has been submitted to the state’s insurance department for review. Louisiana Commissioner Jim Donelon said actuaries from the department will look at the filing and then the department will discuss the findings with Citizens.

He said Citizens and the department have gone back and forth almost every year with actuarial reviews. He noted that people tend to think of actuarial science as straight mathematics, but he said, “There is a large degree of art in the process.” Judgments are made, he said, and the department will review those judgments over the next several weeks.

According to Highline Data, Louisiana Citizens had the third largest homeowners multi-peril writer in the state as of 2009, with a 6.4 percent market share. State Farm was first with 27.9 percent and Allstate was second with 14 percent.

Highline Data is a part of Summit Business Media, which also owns National Underwriter and PropertyCasualty360.com.