Code Section

Insurance Code - INS

DIVISION 1. GENERAL RULES GOVERNING INSURANCE [100 - 1879.8]

  ( Division 1 enacted by Stats. 1935, Ch. 145. )
  

PART 1. THE CONTRACT [100 - 679.74]

  ( Part 1 enacted by Stats. 1935, Ch. 145. )
  

CHAPTER 4. The Policy [380 - 460]

  ( Chapter 4 enacted by Stats. 1935, Ch. 145. )
  

ARTICLE 1. Definition and Scope [380 - 396]
  ( Article 1 enacted by Stats. 1935, Ch. 145. )

  
382.5.  

A binder which is issued in accordance with this section shall be deemed an insurance policy for the purpose of proving that the insured has the insurance coverage specified in the binder.

(a) As used in this section, “binder” means a writing (1) which includes the name and address of the insured and any additional named insureds, mortgagees, or lienholders, a description of the property insured, if applicable, a description of the nature and amount of coverage and any special exclusions not contained in a standard policy, the identity of the insurer and the agent executing the binder, the effective date of coverage, the binder number or the policy number where applicable to a policy extension, and (2) which temporarily obligates the insurer to provide that insurance coverage pending issuance of the insurance policy. For purposes of this section, “binder” does not include, and this section does not apply to, any writing that conditionally or unconditionally obligates an insurer to provide (1) life or disability insurance or (2) insurance in the amount of one million dollars ($1,000,000) or more.

(b) Except as superseded by the clear and express terms of the binder, a binder shall be deemed to include all of the usual terms of the policy as to which the binder was given, together with applicable endorsements as are designated in the binder.

(c) Except as otherwise provided in this subdivision, a binder shall be valid for the period specified therein not exceeding 90 days from the date of execution of the binder or, if not specified, for that period of 90 days. No binder shall remain valid on or after the date the insurance policy is issued with respect to which the binder was given. Expiration of coverage under a binder shall not be considered a cancellation or nonrenewal of a policy of insurance within the meaning of any statute limiting the right to cancel or nonrenew a policy of insurance.

(d) If any party to a contract or other agreement refuses without reasonable cause to accept a binder as proof of insurance when that proof is required by the contract or agreement, that party shall be deemed to have breached the contract and the other party thereto, shall be entitled to appropriate injunctive relief and may recover damages for the breach and reasonable attorney’s fees and costs. As used in this subdivision, “reasonable cause” includes, but shall not be limited to, any of the following:

(1) Inadequate coverage or inappropriate terms of coverage with respect to the interest of the vendor, lender, lessor, or other person providing a service to the insured.

(2) Failure of the insurer to meet the financial standards “lawfully” established by the lender for all insurers for the type of loan for which the insurance is obtained.

(3) Inability of the lender to determine if the insurer is licensed as an admitted insurer by the commissioner to transact the line of insurance for which the binder is issued.

(4) Failure of the insurance agent to provide the lender with written evidence of the agent’s authority to bind insurance coverage on behalf of the insurer under the binder.

(5) Failure of the binder to comply with this section.

(e) For purposes of all insurance policies providing collateral insurance coverage, binders issued in accordance with this section shall be deemed an insurance policy.

(f) The commissioner may suspend or revoke the license of any agent issuing or purporting to issue any binder of a type for which the agent lacks authority from the insurer named in the binder.

(Added by Stats. 1989, Ch. 971, Sec. 1.)