Code Section Group

Insurance Code - INS

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

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

PART 2. THE BUSINESS OF INSURANCE [680 - 1879.8]

  ( Part 2 enacted by Stats. 1935, Ch. 145. )

CHAPTER 5. Production Agencies [1621 - 1758.993]

  ( Chapter 5 repealed and added by Stats. 1959, Ch. 4. )

ARTICLE 16.1. Portable Electronics Insurance [1758.6 - 1758.693]
  ( Heading of Article 16.1 amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 426, Sec. 6. )

1758.6.
  

No portable electronics vendor shall offer or sell any form of portable electronics insurance in this state unless that person is licensed as an insurance agent or broker pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Section 1631) or has complied with the requirements of this article and has been issued a license by the commissioner as provided in this article.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.61.
  

The commissioner may issue to an applicant that has complied with the requirements of this article a portable electronics insurance agent license that authorizes the licensee and its endorsees to offer or sell insurance in connection with, and incidental to, the sale of portable electronics or the sale or provision of accessories or services related to the use of portable electronics.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.62.
  

(a) An applicant for a portable electronics insurance agent license under this article shall submit all of the following to the commissioner:

(1) A written application for licensure, signed by the applicant or an officer of the applicant, in the form prescribed by the commissioner.

(2) A certificate by the insurer that is to be named in the portable electronics insurance agent license, stating that the insurer has satisfied itself that the named applicant is trustworthy and competent to act as its insurance agent limited to this purpose and that the insurer will appoint the applicant to act as its agent to transact the kind or kinds of insurance that are permitted by this article, if the portable electronics insurance agent license applied for is issued by the commissioner. The certification shall be subscribed by an officer or managing agent of the insurer on a form prescribed by the commissioner.

(3) An application fee and, for each license period thereafter, a renewal fee, in an amount or amounts determined by the department as sufficient to defray the department’s actual cost of processing the application or renewal and implementing this article. The limitation on fee increases of 10 percent without prior approval of the Legislature set forth in Section 12978 shall not apply to the application or renewal fee set forth in this subdivision during the years 2003, 2004, and 2005.

(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, the provisions set forth in Sections 1667, 1668, 1668.5, 1669, 1670, 1738, and 1739 apply to any application for or issuance of a license pursuant to this article.

(c) Costs associated with any enforcement action or investigation shall be paid for by the person or organization licensed pursuant to this article.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 3. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.63.
  

An endorsee of a portable electronics vendor that has been issued a portable electronics insurance agent license pursuant to this article may sell or offer insurance products under the authority of the vendor’s portable electronics insurance agent license if all of the following conditions have been met:

(a) The endorsee is 18 years of age or older.

(b) The portable electronics vendor, at the time it submits its portable electronics insurance agent’s license application pursuant to Section 1758.62, also establishes a list of all locations in this state at which it offers coverage under a policy of portable electronics insurance. The list shall be maintained by the portable electronics vendor in a form prescribed by, or format acceptable to, the commissioner and shall be updated annually. The list shall be maintained by the portable electronics vendor and made available to the commissioner for review and inspection upon request.

(c) Each portable electronics vendor licensed pursuant to this article shall provide for the training of its endorsees under a program developed by a licensed property and casualty broker or agent prior to allowing its endorsees to offer or sell insurance products. The training shall meet the following minimum standards:

(1) Each endorsee shall receive instruction about the types of insurance specified in subdivision (e) of Section 1758.69 that are offered for sale to prospective customers.

(2) Each endorsee shall receive training about ethical sales practices.

(3) Each endorsee shall receive training about the disclosures to be given to prospective customers pursuant to Section 1758.66.

(4) The retraining of endorsees shall be conducted whenever there is a material change in the insurance products sold that requires modification of the training materials, but in no event less frequently than every three years for each endorsee.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 4. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.64.
  

An endorsee may act on behalf of and under the supervision of the portable electronics insurance agent in matters relating to transacting insurance under that agent’s license. The conduct of an endorsee of a portable electronics insurance agent acting within the scope of employment or agency shall be deemed the conduct of the portable electronics insurance agent for purposes of this article.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 5. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.65.
  

(a) If a licensee or endorsee violates any provision of this article or any other provision of this code, the commissioner may do any of the following:

(1) After notice and hearing, suspend or revoke the license of the portable electronics insurance agent.

(2) After notice and hearing, impose fines on the portable electronics insurance agent for its conduct or that of its endorsees.

(3) After notice and hearing, impose other penalties that the commissioner deems necessary and convenient to carry out the purpose of this code, including suspending the privilege of transacting portable electronics insurance pursuant to this article at specific business locations where violations have occurred, imposing fines on the portable electronics insurance agent, and suspending or revoking the ability of individual endorsees to act under the vendor’s license.

(b) If any person sells insurance in connection with, or incidental to, the sale of portable electronics or the sale or provision of accessories or services related thereto, or holds himself or herself or an organization out as a portable electronics insurance agent without obtaining the license required by this article, or as being licensed pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 1621) without obtaining that license, the commissioner may issue a cease and desist order pursuant to Section 12921.8.

(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, the provisions of Section 1748.5 are applicable to both the organization issued a license pursuant to this article and any endorsee to that license.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 6. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.66.
  

A portable electronics insurance agent shall not sell insurance pursuant to this article by unsolicited telephone calls or otherwise unless, at the time of sale, or reasonably thereafter with respect to a sale or enrollment occurring by telephone, all of the following conditions are satisfied:

(a) The portable electronics insurance agent provides brochures or other written materials to the prospective purchaser that do all of the following:

(1) Summarize the material terms and conditions of coverage offered, including the identity of the insurer.

(2) Describe the process for filing a claim, including a toll-free telephone number to report a claim.

(3) Disclose any additional information on the price, benefits, exclusions, conditions, or other limitations of those policies that the commissioner may, by rule, prescribe.

(4) Provide the name, address, telephone number, and license number of the licensee or the property and casualty broker-agent appointed by the insurer issuing portable electronics insurance coverage to the licensee, as well as the department’s toll-free consumer hotline.

(b) The portable electronics insurance agent or its endorsees make all of the following disclosures, which shall be acknowledged in writing by the purchaser, or displayed by clear and conspicuous signs that are posted at every location where contracts are executed, such as the counter where the purchaser signs the service agreement, or provided in writing to the purchaser:

(1) That the purchase by the customer of the kinds of insurance prescribed in this article is not required in order to purchase portable electronics, accessories, or related services.

(2) That the insurance policies offered by the portable electronics insurance agent may provide a duplication of coverage already provided by other insurance policies covering the purchaser.

(3) That the endorsee of the portable electronics insurance agent is not qualified or authorized to evaluate the adequacy of the purchaser’s existing insurance coverages, unless that person is licensed pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Section 1631).

(4) That the customer may cancel the insurance at any time. If the customer cancels any unearned premium will be refunded in accordance with applicable law.

(c) The material terms and conditions of coverage are provided to every person who elects to purchase that coverage.

(d) Costs for the insurance are separately itemized in any billing statement for the insurance. However, if the portable electronics coverage is included with the purchase or lease of portable electronics or related services, the vendor shall clearly and conspicuously disclose to the customer that the coverage is included with the purchase of the portable electronics or related services.

(e) The insurance is provided under an individual policy issued to the purchaser, or under a group or master policy issued to an organization licensed as a portable electronics insurance agent by an insurer authorized to transact the applicable kinds or types of insurance in this state.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 7. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.661.
  

Charges for portable electronics insurance may be billed and collected by a portable electronics insurance agent licensee. A licensee shall not be required to maintain those funds in a segregated account if the insurer represented by the licensee has provided in writing that the funds need not be segregated from funds received by the portable electronics vendor on account of the sale or lease of portable electronics or related services or accessories. All funds received by a vendor from a customer for the sale of portable electronics insurance shall be considered funds held in trust by the vendor in a fiduciary capacity for the benefit of the insurer. Licensees may receive compensation for billing and collection services.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 8. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.67.
  

Under the authority of the portable electronics insurance agent license, a portable electronics insurance agent shall not do any of the following:

(a) Offer to sell insurance except in conjunction with, and incidental to, the business of selling portable electronics, their accessories, or related services.

(b) Advertise, represent, or otherwise portray itself or its endorsees as licensed insurers or property and casualty broker-agents.

(c) Pay any endorsee compensation based primarily on the number of customers electing coverage under the portable electronics insurance agent’s license. However, nothing in this code shall prohibit the payment of compensation to an endorsee of a portable electronics insurance agent for activities under the agent’s license that is incidental to their overall compensation. The incidental compensation shall not exceed fifteen dollars ($15) per customer who purchases portable electronics insurance coverage.

(d) Unless lawfully transacting the business of insurance pursuant to a certificate of authority issued pursuant to Section 700 for the appropriate class, a person obligated to perform under a contract offered in or from this state that meets the definition of portable electronics insurance as set forth in Section 1758.69 shall be deemed to be unlawfully transacting the business of insurance and shall be subject to subdivision (b) of Section 700 and Section 12921.8.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 9. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.68.
  

Any insurer that provides insurance to be sold by an organization licensed as a portable electronics insurance agent shall file a copy of any individual policy issued to a purchaser, or any policy or certificate issued under a group or master policy to an organization licensed as a portable electronics insurance agent, with the commissioner, who shall make that policy available to the public.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 10. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.681.
  

Notwithstanding any other law:

(a) As used in this section, “portable electronics vendor policyholder” means a portable electronics insurance agent licensee pursuant to subdivision (f) of Section 1758.69.

(b) An insurer may terminate a portable electronics insurance policy or otherwise change the terms and conditions of a portable electronics insurance policy only upon providing the portable electronics vendor policyholder and enrolled customers with at least 30 calendar days’ written notice.

(c) If the insurer changes the terms and conditions of a policy of portable electronics insurance, the insurer shall provide the portable electronics vendor policyholder with a revised policy or endorsement and each enrolled customer with a revised certificate, endorsement, updated brochure, or other evidence indicating that a change in the terms and conditions has occurred and a summary of those changes.

(d) Notwithstanding subdivision (b), an insurer may terminate an enrolled customer’s enrollment under a portable electronics insurance policy upon 15 calendar days’ notice for discovery of fraud or material misrepresentation in obtaining coverage or in the presentation of a claim under the policy.

(e) Notwithstanding subdivision (b), an insurer may immediately terminate an enrolled customer’s enrollment under a portable electronics insurance policy without prior notice for any of the following:

(1) For nonpayment of premium.

(2) If the enrolled customer ceases to have an active service with the vendor of portable electronics.

(3) If the enrolled customer exhausts the aggregate limit of liability, if any, under the terms of the portable electronics insurance policy and the insurer sends notice of termination to the enrolled customer within 30 calendar days after exhaustion of the limit. However, if notice is not sent within 30 calendar days, enrollment shall continue notwithstanding the aggregate limit of liability until 30 calendar days from the date the insurer sends notice of termination to the enrolled customer.

(f) If a portable electronics insurance policy is terminated by a portable electronics vendor policyholder, the portable electronics vendor policyholder shall mail or deliver a written notice to each enrolled customer advising the enrolled customer of the termination of the policy and the effective date of termination. The written notice shall be mailed or delivered by the portable electronics vendor policyholder to the enrolled customer at least 30 days prior to the termination. However, if the notice is not sent within 30 calendar days, enrollment shall continue until 30 calendar days from the date the portable electronics vendor policyholder sends notice of termination to the enrolled customer or until a new portable electronics insurance policy is in effect.

(g) Whenever notice or correspondence with respect to a policy of portable electronics insurance is required pursuant to this section, it shall be in writing and sent within the notice period required pursuant to this section. Notices and correspondence shall be sent to the portable electronics vendor policyholder at the portable electronics vendor policyholder’s mailing address specified for that purpose and to its affected enrolled customers’ last known mailing addresses on file with the insurer or the portable electronics vendor policyholder. The insurer or portable electronics vendor policyholder shall maintain proof that the notice or correspondence was sent for not less than three years after that notice or correspondence was sent.

(Added by Stats. 2013, Ch. 321, Sec. 21. Effective January 1, 2014.)

1758.69.
  

As used in this article, the following definitions have the following meanings:

(a) “Endorsee” means an unlicensed employee or authorized representative of a portable electronics vendor.

(b) “Enrollment” means the process of soliciting or accepting enrollments or applications from a consumer under a portable electronics insurance policy, which includes informing the consumer of the availability of coverage, preparing and delivery of the certificate of insurance or notice of proposed insurance, or otherwise assisting the consumer in making an informed decision whether or not to elect to purchase portable electronics insurance.

(c) (1) “License period” means all of that two-year period beginning as described in subparagraph (A) or (B) of paragraph (2), as applicable, and ending the second succeeding year on the last calendar day of the month in which the initial license was issued.

(2) A license period shall be determined for each person as follows:

(A) Upon initial licensing, the license period shall start on the date the license is issued.

(B) For a subsequent license, the license period shall start on the first day following the month in which the initial license was issued.

(3) A license shall be renewed on or before the expiration date of the license period.

(d) (1) “Portable electronics” means all of the following:

(A) Personal, self-contained, easily carried by an individual, battery-operated electronic communication, viewing, listening, recording, gaming, computing, or global positioning devices, including cell or satellite phones, pagers, personal global positioning satellite units, portable computers, portable audio listening, video viewing or recording devices, digital cameras, video camcorders, portable gaming systems, docking stations, automatic answering devices, their accessories, and service related to the use of those devices.

(B) Any other electronic device that is portable in nature that the commissioner approves.

(2) “Portable electronics” does not include telecommunications switching equipment, transmission wires, cell site transceiver equipment, or other equipment and systems used by telecommunications companies to provide telecommunications service to consumers.

(e) (1) “Portable electronics insurance” means a contract providing coverage for the repair or replacement of portable electronics against any one or more of the following causes of loss: loss, theft, mechanical failure, malfunction, damage, or other applicable perils.

(2) “Portable electronics insurance” does not include any of the following:

(A) A service contract governed by Article 4.5 (commencing with Section 9855) of Chapter 20 of Division 3 of the Business and Professions Code.

(B) A policy of insurance covering a seller’s or a manufacturer’s obligations under a warranty.

(C) A homeowner’s, renter’s, private passenger automobile, commercial multiperil, or similar policy.

(f) “Portable electronics insurance agent license” means an agent license issued to an individual or organization for the enrollment and sale of portable electronics insurance.

(g) “Portable electronics vendor” means any person in the business, directly or indirectly, of selling, reselling, soliciting, or leasing portable electronics, their accessories, and related services to customers.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 11. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.691.
  

Nothing in this article regulating the sale of portable electronics insurance shall be construed to impair or impede the application of any other law regulating the sale of portable electronics insurance.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 12. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.692.
  

(a) Not less than 60 days before a permanent license will expire, the commissioner may use an electronic delivery method, including e-mail or other similar electronic method of delivery, to deliver, or may mail, to the latest e-mail or mailing address appearing on his or her records, an application to the licensee to renew the license of a portable electronics insurance agent for the appropriate succeeding license term. It is the licensee’s responsibility to renew, whether or not a renewal notice is received.

(b) The commissioner may accept a late renewal without penalty, provided that the licensee’s failure to comply is due to a clerical error or inadvertence.

(c) An application for renewal of a license may be filed on or before the expiration date. An application for renewal of an expired license may be filed after the expiration date and until that same month and date of the next succeeding year.

(d) The commissioner shall impose a penalty fee equal to one-half of the renewal fee for the portable electronics insurance agent license for any renewal that is filed after the expiration date of the license.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 165, Sec. 13. Effective January 1, 2012.)

1758.693.
  

(a) This article shall become operative only upon a determination by the commissioner that the personnel positions needed to carry out the provisions of this article are in existence or have been authorized in the Budget Act of 2002 or a subsequent budget act.

(b) On and after January 1, 2003, the commissioner may accept applications from communications equipment vendors seeking licensure pursuant to this article. However, the commissioner shall not act upon the applications. If, prior to April 30, 2003, the commissioner receives 50 applications or less, the commissioner shall be deemed to have sufficient personnel to carry out the provisions of this article and this article shall immediately become operative.

(Added by Stats. 2002, Ch. 437, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 2003. Note: Operational conditions apply to Article 16.1, commencing with Section 1758.6.)

INSInsurance Code - INS