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The California Senate approved S.B. 1167 (Sen. Pat Wiggins, D-Santa Rosa), an anti-steering bill. The bill now needs to be approved by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
The Collision Repair Association of California (CRA) originally sponsored the bill until it became obvious that the measure didn’t have enough votes to be passed by the Senate Banking, Finance and Insurance Committee. Wiggins then amended the bill to require that the insurance commissioner form a task force to study issues addressed by Insurance Code Section 758.5 (the anti-steering statute). If the bill gets final approval, the task force must report its findings by Dec. 31, 2009.
The bill would also amend Section 758.5 of the state’s insurance code to require insurers to ask policyholders if they have chosen a repair shop prior to suggesting one.
The California Assembly passed the bill on July 15 and passed it to the Senate. The CRA has worked with Wiggins to determine how the bill might be most effective in reducing unfair and illegal insurer practices.