Can car insurance companies use your education to set your rate?

A consumer watchdog group says New York's largest auto insurers are using education level and occupation to set rates, charging blue collar workers more for the same policy than college educated professionals.

Andy Morrison, a consumer advocate who worked on the report from the New York Public Interest Research Group, says the practice is unfair to minorities and low-income workers.

The report used online rate quotes from GEICO, Progressive and Liberty Mutual and found that rates were hundreds of dollars more for drivers with a high-school education and a non-professional job compared to college-educated professionals.

NYPIRG wrote to the state's Department of Financial Services Thursday asking it to review the insurers' rate-making policies to see if they are legal.

Messages left with the insurance companies were not immediately returned Thursday.