Insurance Rate Notice of Increase

by R. Stempler Esq.    Personal Injury & Lemon Law Consumer Lawyer-Protecting CA consumers since 1997.   Because Personal, and the right thing to do!

Question: I just received notice that my insurance company will be increasing my automobile insurance policy.  I made a claim after being rear-ended by a driver who was not paying attention.  I was not at fault.  Can they force me to pay a higher premium on my auto insurance policy?

Answer:  No.   Proposition 103, which California voters passed in 1988 (thanks to great organizations like Consumer Watchdog) prohibits insurance surcharges being imposed by an insurance company following an accident in which the driver was not at fault.  Proposition 103 protects each of us, as a consumer.  Prop 103 is a wonderful pro-consumer protection law.

The insurance company is also prohibited from cancelling or refusing to renew an insurance policy, except for the following reasons: (1) failure to pay the premium, (2) fraud or misrepresentation related to the policy, or (3) “a substantial increase in the hazard insured against.”  This is also thanks to Prop 103.

If your insurance company sends you or other consumers a notice that violates your rights under Prop 103, you can file a complaint against them to protect your Prop 103 rights and the rights of others.  According to Consumer Watchdog, a legal action can be prosecuted either before the Cal Department of Insurance or in court.  It may also be possible for a consumer to enlist the help of non-profit organizations to make such a complaint for any violations of Prop 103.

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