California Insurance Commissioner Poizner has expanded the state’s Low Cost Automobile Insurance program to El Centro, Calif., in his aim to give residents an affordable automobile insurance option.
“One out of four Imperial County residents is unemployed, and that means that too many families are having trouble making ends meet,” said Commissioner Poizner. “Some families might think about canceling their auto insurance to save a buck, but driving without insurance is illegal and puts all drivers at risk. The California Low Cost Auto Insurance Program is one affordable way for unemployed or low income drivers to get insured. I urge all drivers to shop around for the best product and rate for their individual needs.”
Motorists driving without insurance can have their vehicle registrations suspended, cancelled or revoked by the Department of Motor Vehicles under SB 1500, which became effective Jan. 1, 2006, as part of legislation designed to reduce the risk of economic losses sustained as the result of collisions involving uninsured motorists.
The low cost auto insurance program provides eligible good drivers with auto liability coverage, currently for under $400 a year. In Imperial County, an LCA policy costs $161 per year. Since its inception, approximately 45,000 LCA policies have been issued statewide. In Imperial County, 128 policies have been issued since the LCA program was made available there in 2006. Program policies are issued by California licensed insurers and the program is administered by the California Automobile Assigned Risk Plan.
The California Low Cost Automobile Insurance Program is not subsidized by taxpayers. The program is self-sustaining. Rates are set in each county so that premiums are sufficient to cover losses and expenses in each county.
There are a number of eligibility requirements for the program, including:
- An applicant must be a “good driver” – no more than one at-fault property damage only accident, or one point for a moving violation in the past three years.
- An applicant must be at least 19 years of age with 3 or more years of continuous driving experience.
- No at-fault accident involving bodily injury or death in the past three years and no felony or misdemeanor conviction for a violation of the Vehicle Code.
- Family income cannot exceed 250 percent of the federal poverty level ($27,075 for a single person, $36,425 for two persons and $55,125 for a family of four).
- The value of an insured vehicle must not exceed $20,000.
For more information about the program, call 866-602-8861.
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