(PRWEB) May 11, 2012
At the end of 2011, the California State Office of Administrative Law approved major changes to auto insurance regulations relating to determining fault in motor vehicle accidents and eligibility for good-driver discounts.
Under the new rules, automobile insurance providers may no longer make at-fault determinations solely based on incomplete Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) reports, but have been given access to more reliable sources that enable insurers to offer timely and accurate quotes to drivers, including the Insurance Services Office (ISO) and Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (CLUE) databases.
Drivers are now considered to be principally at fault if their acts or omissions were a major factor in the collision and they are deemed to be at least 51% responsible. Insurers are also permitted to utilize any evidence in their possession to demonstrate that a policy holder’s actions or failure to act was the cause of the accident, although they are prohibited from declaring a motorist principally at fault simply because the driver has failed to supply sufficient information.
Therefore, the revised regulations may affect a greater number of motorists who now could be considered responsible when in the past they might not have been under the old legislation passed in 1988 where a driver was considered not principally at-fault no matter the circumstances if certain conditions were met.
Additionally, the amendments authorize auto coverage providers to assess one violation point for every accident where the driver is found to be principally at fault and property damage results, while making California motorists ineligible for good-driver discounts of up to 20% if they have one violation on their driving record or have been found to be principally at fault in a crash that results in over $1,000 in damage, bodily injury, or death within the prior 3 years.
The legislation further requires that insurance providers follow a consistent process in determining fault following an accident, and provide the driver with written notice regarding findings of any investigation, the fault determination, and the reason for the decision.
The Department of Insurance has claimed that these revisions take inflation into account by raising the property damage threshold, ensure reliability in ascertaining fault in motor vehicle accidents, and make it easier for California consumers entitled to be rewarded for responsible driving to acquire lower-priced policies.
Such critical changes in auto insurance laws is why it’s important for motorists to keep abreast of what’s happening in the industry so that they can understand their rights, how new regulations may impact them, and ensure that they are adequately insured to protect themselves, their families, and their livelihood. At CheapCarInsurance.net, we provide a comprehensive medium for keeping up with the latest news regardless where you live, useful tips for motorists, and access to the most affordable rates and discounts you deserve with a new easy-to-complete insurance request form to guarantee faster online quotes.