The contractors submit inflated repair bills, then file suit when insurers deny or underpay them. Typically the insurers settle for some amount over the invoice, enabling contractors to recover all legal fees billed for the litigation. And those fees mount: Lawsuits tied to assignments of benefits have increased from about 400 in 2006 to more than 28,000 by 2016, state Insurance Commissioner David Altmaier has told legislative committees debating the issue. Seventy-three percent of rate requests by insurance companies filed with the Office of Insurance Regulation last year were approved for

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