Auto Insurance Rates
Farm Bureau seeks fair auto insurance rates
Premium Change SearchDatabase updated Feb. 17, 2006
Other ResourcesUpdated July 19, 2006
News Release (7/19/06)
Fact Sheet (PDF, 45 KB)
Rate Change Map (PDF, 129 KB)
News Release (2/24/06)
It shouldn’t matter where drivers live, in the city or in the country. We should all pay fair insurance rates that are based on our risk of having an accident or filing a claim.
New regulations by the state Department of Insurance move in the opposite direction. Instead of basing rates on what it costs to insure an individual driver, the regulations use an arbitrary standard that ends up hurting rural drivers.
Farm Bureau filed a lawsuit against the Department of Insurance to block the new regulations. The suit contends the new rules violate state insurance laws by requiring insurers to give artificially high weight to annual mileage and driving record in setting auto-insurance premiums, while giving artificially low weight to a driver’s place of residence.
Rural residents drive more miles to accomplish basic daily chores such as shopping, going to the doctor or taking children to school. The new rules sharply penalize rural drivers for that, even though they file fewer claims that cost less to settle.
Hundreds of family farmers, ranchers and rural Californians filed written comments with the state Department of Insurance, to protest the new rules. The rules would raise automobile insurance rates for most Californians, and rural drivers would bear a disproportionate share of the increase.
Find out more in our fact sheet (PDF, 45 KB), which lists county-by-county average rate changes, with a low and high estimate of the changes. In some areas, rates could rise as much as 37 percent. Our map (PDF, 129 KB) provides an at-a-glance look at the highest average rate changes.
To learn how rates might change in your neighborhood*, enter your ZIP code in the space above. You may also view all the ZIP codes in a particular city or county, using the drop-down lists.
*This analysis, commissioned by the state Department of Insurance, was conducted by the actuarial consulting firm Mercer Oliver Wyman. It used data from eight large insurance companies that collectively write 55 percent of the private passenger auto insurance in California. The study analyzed three methods for implementing the proposed regulation, shown as Scenario 1, Scenario 2 and Scenario 3. The possible changes in each column reflect the average changes for all policyholders and all insurers in each ZIP code.