Topic: California Developments

You don’t need a weather man to know which way the wind blows* (*Bob Dylan)

Dave Jones, California Insurance Commissioner took an aggressive stand on Climate Change in a Press Release issued June 21, 2017, stating that if any “…climate denying politicians of red states who threaten to sue me, I will happily defend my obligation as California’s Insurance Commissioner to make sure insurers are addressing climate change related risks and to protect California consumers.” He further noted, “The threats of lawsuits by 12 red state attorneys general and one governor are not going to stop me from doing my job as insurance commissioner to make sure that insurance companies are recognizing potential financial risks associated with climate change.” He pointed out that the bankruptcy of over 35 coal companies and the refusal of four major US banks to provide loans for new coal infrastructure, and the shift away from fossil fuels (oil, gas, coal and utilities that rely on those) creates a risk of becoming ‘stranded assets’ “ …on the books of insurance companies with significantly reduced or no value.” Commissioner Jones then asked those regulated insurance companies to “voluntarily divest from coal…and to publicly disclose their investments in coal, oil, gas, and utilities so insurers, regulators, shareholders, and consumers have better insight into these investments and the risks they face due to climate change. Insurers doing business in California now know which way the wind...

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Liberty v. Ledesma and Meyer Construction, Case No. 14-56120 (9th Cir. 2016)

The California Supreme Court is poised to answer the following unsettled question of California law certified by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on August 22, 2016 (see order here): “Whether there is an ‘occurrence’ under an employer’s commercial general liability policy when an injured third party brings claims against the employer for the negligent hiring, retention, and supervision of the employee who intentionally injured the third party.”

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California Insurance Commissioner Asks Insurers to Exit Thermal Coal Investments

On January 25 the California Insurance Commissioner issued a press release, and also sent email messages to insurers licensed in California, indicating that he is requesting all insurers doing business in California to refrain from making any new investments, refrain from renewing any existing investments, and to sell or withdraw from existing investments, in any company that generates 30% or more of its revenue from the mining or use of thermal coal.

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California Governor Signs Long-term Care Insurance Bill

On October 6, 2015 California’s Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill 575, requiring annual notifications of certain nonforfeiture benefits under long-term care insurance contracts. Under current law, an insurer is required to offer, at the time of application for a long-term care insurance contract, an option to purchase a shortened benefit period nonforfeiture benefit.

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