Auto mileage reporting to my Insurance Company. How is it their business anyway?

Folder with paid bills.

In California, the California Department of Insurance keeps watch on the Insurance industry operating in California. Thirty plus years ago, they were ordered by Voters to study, suggest and enact how insurance rates could be made “fairer”. One of those suggestions, that was supposed to make for more equitable rates, was that rates could only move up with prior approval. Part of gaining approval is to show need, as in increased risk from drivers. Risk piles up when drivers log more miles; so now there is a need to document miles driven.

Whether or not you agree with this approach, the fact is you are going to get Mileage Surveys and/or Mileage Declarations from your insurance company. It is best if you turn these into the Company or your Agent. Failure to do so could get your policy cancelled or a hefty boost in your premiums. If you don’t answer, then you are moved to the “13,000 miles/year club”. 13,000 miles/year is the State DOI’s calculation of the average miles/year logged by every driving Californian. Again, you may not agree that this is fair, but that is what the State as decided. Resistance is futile.

A silver lining to this cloud is that these can be done online and are not time consuming. Sometimes you are asked for documents that independently collaborate your claims of miles driven from oil change or repair receipts. These need to be scanned and sent online or copied and the originals sent; you keep the copies.

If you are driving less than 13,000 miles/year, it is in your interest to turn in these documents as you will get a better rate. If you drive more than 13,000, you should still be truthful. Paying more is not fun, but if the unthinkable happens and you are in an accident, it will be noted that the mileage is off, and penalties to settlements may be applied.

So, please, pay attention to those emails and letters sent by your Agent and Insurance company. We are, after all, focusing on you, your needs, your protection, and your future.

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