Lara Orders California Insurance Companies to Refund Premiums and Businesses Due to COVID-19

One April 13 last week, Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara ordered insurance companies to return insurance premiums to consumers and businesses and provide financial relief during the COVID-19 emergency.

As an insurance agency dedicated to match our clients with the best policy in an efficient and timely manner, this is vital news that other agencies and current clients should be aware of.

The order covers premiums paid for March and April — including the month of May if “shelter in place” restrictions continue — in at least six different insurance lines: private passenger automobile, commercial automobile, workers’ compensation, commercial multi-peril, commercial liability, medical malpractice, and any other insurance line where the risk of loss has fallen substantially as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“With Californians driving fewer miles and many businesses closed due to the COVID-19 emergency, consumers need relief from premiums that no longer reflect their present-day risk of accident or loss,” said Commissioner Lara.

The Commissioner’s order requires insurance companies to provide a premium credit, reduction, return of premium, or other appropriate premium adjustment as soon as possible, and no later than August 2020.

Commissioner Lara has already requested at least a 60-day grace period for policyholders to pay their premiums so that insurance policies are not cancelled for nonpayment of premium during this challenging time.

Together, these two actions will give consumers and businesses substantial financial relief.

For more ideas, read our recent article “How to Build an Emergency Fund.”

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