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Current Issues

Request For Assistance - If you have a complaint about your insurance company and you had a loss in California, tell the California Department of Insurance about it.  It the best way to get the CDI looking into the problems you are running into.  For the purpose of this fire, the more documented complaints there are, the easier it is for the CDI to find a pattern, the more the CDI will get involved with pushing the insurance companies to solve these problems for everyone.

Number of fire related RFA's filed with the CDI as of:


Contractor problems

If you are having a problem with your contractor and you are unable to solve the issue, then you can file a complaint with the Contractor State Licencing Board.  Call 800-321-CSLB (2752) or go to their web site at http://www.cslb.ca.gov/consumers/default.asp.  Filing a complaint is a serious, so make sure you have done everything you can to solve the issue before taking this step.

Non Renewal Notices

Have you recently gotten a notice that your homeowners insurance will not be renewed? If your insurance company has recently sent you a notice that they will not be renewing your coverage, you should notify or file an RFA with the California Department of Insurance (see above for instructions). It's important that the Department know how many people are getting non-renewable notices and from which insurance companies. They need the information in order to take action to remedy the availability shortages and premium spikes that always follow disasters. Recently enacted legislation, (2962 Pavley, see below for details)

AB 2962 listed below gives disaster survivors the right to at least one renewal. This is only a short term fix, but the non-renewal data property owners send to the CDI will help ensure a long term fix.


Non Renewal information provided by Amy Bach


Legislation impacting California homeowners and policyholders: 2003-2004 Session


The bills listed below are presently going through our legislature. These bills have been introduced in response to the fires that have swept through our state. For the most up to date information check the direct web links provided below.  The most recent analysis will provide the last revision of the bill intent.

To review all bills, click on: Legislative Counsel: Bill Information, this site provides access to bills from 1993 to the present. The site provides the text of the bills in the standard bill format or text-only. This site also allows "subscription" to legislation with email alert of hearings and amendments.


If you have any questions about a bill, call the legislators office and ask for the consultant handling the bill.

Senator   Directory        http://www.sen.ca.gov/~newsen/senators/senators.htp

Assembly Directory       http://www.assembly.ca.gov/acs/acsframeset7text.htm

As of August 8, 145 postcards for bill support have been received by CDI.

Assembly Bill 1588 (Negrete McLeod) VETO Click here for veto message

This bill would have given the CDF the authority to buy firefighting helicopters, planes or other equipment with federal funds. The equipment would have been stationed statewide in the areas of greatest fire risk.    

Assembly Bill 1953 (Vargas) SIGNED INTO LAW
Public insurance adjusters: contracts

Substantially increases fines for acting as unlicensed public adjuster and places additional limitations on the solicitation practices of public adjusters.

Assembly Bill 2199   (Kehoe) SIGNED INTO LAW
This bill establishes a minimum 12-month period in non-catastrophic situations (with additional 6-month extensions if the policyholder can show good cause for needing more time), and a 24-month period for declared "state of emergency" situations for homeowners to repair, rebuild, or replace their home after a loss, commencing with payment of actual cash value. Provides more time on insurance policies for homes destroyed or damaged from fires or other disasters to be rebuilt or repaired. Allows for an additional 6 months extension to the new 12 month minimum amount of time.

Assembly Bill 2406  (Bermudez) VETO Click here for veto message

Fire  which would have required local fire departments to report their staffing levels and response times to the state fire marshal.   


Assembly Bill 2962  (Pavley) SIGNED INTO LAW
Clarifies the measurement of "actual cash value" in relation to a homeowner’s insurance policy. Requires insurers to adjust premiums to reflect the changed exposure to risk upon a renewal of a policy, after the homeowner has experienced a total loss. Prohibits insurers from canceling a policy during the course of rebuilding.

Assembly Bill 3065   (Kehoe)  SIGNED INTO LAW
This bill requires the state Forestry and Fire Protection Board to review the safety element of a city or county general plan, starting in 2010


Senate Bill 64  (Speier) SIGNED INTO LAW
Would allow victims of wildfire to mediate disputed claims through the California Department of Insurance.

Senate Bill 902 (Burton) VETO Click here for veto message

This bill would have purchased 150 multipurpose fire engines for the state Office of Emergency Services. They would have been stationed around California as a ready reserve. The money would have been drawn from federal emergency/terrorism preparation funds already allocated to the state.      

Senate Bill 1147 (Hollingsworth) SIGNED INTO LAW

Provides income tax relief for those who suffered losses as a result of the 2003 fires or earthquake and allows owners whose homes were destroyed by the fire to retain homeowners property tax exemptions.


Senate Bill 1323  (Ortiz) PLACED ON INACTIVE FILE
Homeowners' insurance: prohibited actions. This bill would prohibit an insurer from using credit ratings, credit reports, credit scoring models, or credit information to underwrite, classify, or rate homeowners' insurance policies. It would also prohibit an insurer from refusing to issue, or non-renewing or canceling, a homeowners' policy based upon these types of credit information.

Existing law prohibits an insurer from basing an adverse underwriting decision, as defined, on the fact that an individual has previously inquired and received information about the scope of nature of coverage under a residential fire or property insurance policy, if the information is received from an insurance-support organization whose primary source of information is insurance institutions and the inquiry did not result in the filing of a claim.

This bill would prohibit an insurer from reporting the fact that an insured has inquired about the nature or scope of coverage under a homeowners' policy to a database or other record maintained by any of these insurance-support organizations if the inquiry did not


Senate Bill 1369  (Kuehl)  SIGNED INTO LAW
This bill requires a person who owns property within either state fire prevention and suppression responsibility areas, or local responsibility areas where the homes are in very high fire hazard severity zones, to create a firebreak of 100 feet around any structures on his or her property and to provide proof of building certification to his or her insurance carrier .

Senate Bill 1454 (Hollingsworth) WITHDREW BY SPONSOR

For eligible counties, Average Daily Attendance (ADA) for a fiscal year must be computed based on regular ADA used to calculate the second principal apportionment for either the current fiscal year or each of the 3 prior fiscal years. [This allows districts such as those in the Southern California Fire Areas that have experienced drastic decreases in enrollment due to disasters to spread the ADA over the 3 years to allow let them get back on their feet when the enrollment increases as homes are rebuilt.]

Senate Bill 1611 (Ducheny) VETO Click here for veto message.

Natural resources: fire prevention and suppression.

Senate Bill 1855   (Alpert) SIGNED INTO LAW
Requires insurance companies to disclose to homeowners the additional cost of coverage that is more extensive than the homeowner’s current coverage. It also requires insurers to include additional information about the insured property on the declaration page. The disclosure will also inform the consumer to seek additional information if he or she does not believe the limit of liability is sufficient to rebuild the structure.


Updated 12/6/04

By: Dian B.