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News: 2013 Press Release
For Release: March 5, 2013
Media Calls Only: 916-492-3566
Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones Announces He Will Defend Rate Reduction Against Mercury Insurance Lawsuit
Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones today announced that he issued a decision providing for an 8.18 percent rate reduction in homeowners insurance by Mercury Casualty Company. This action comes after a public hearing on Mercury's request to raise its rates by 7.3 percent. However, based upon the evidence presented during the public hearing, it was determined that the maximum rate Mercury may charge its homeowner policyholders must be reduced.
The reduced rates would impact approximately 270,000 homeowners in California. The reduced rates will save Mercury's California customers more than $16.5 million, and would take effect in June of this year.
"The rate reduction provided for in this decision would offer much-needed financial relief for homeowners and would no doubt help consumers keep more of their hard-earned dollars in today's tight economy," Commissioner Jones said. "My priority at the Department of Insurance is to fight for consumers to make sure homeowner insurance rates are fair and not excessive."
Mercury has filed suit challenging Insurance Commissioner Jones' rate reduction decision. "I have directed the Department of Insurance to vigorously defend against Mercury's effort to deprive homeowners of this rate decrease," said Commissioner Jones.
A copy of the Writ of Mandate from Mercury Casualty Company is available to the public.
The California Department of Insurance, established in 1868, is the largest consumer protection agency in California, regulating the $123 billion insurance marketplace. In 2013 the California Department of Insurance received more than 170,000 calls from consumers and helped recover over $63 million in claims and premiums. Please visit the Department of Insurance web site at www.insurance.ca.gov. Non-media inquiries should be directed to the Consumer Hotline at 800.927.HELP or 213.897.8921. Telecommunications Devices for the Deaf (TDD), please dial 800.482.4833.