Car Insurance Myths: BUSTED!

Whether it’s about rates dropping when you turn 25, or that full coverage insurance automatically means that your insurance company will ensure that you get a new car after a crash, we’ve all heard some auto insurance myths that have somehow been accepted as fact.  Being an informed consumer when it comes to your insurance is important and we’re here to help bust six common car insurance myths.

First off, buying a red car isn’t automatically going to mean a higher premium. Insurance companies don’t actually care what color your car is and when you call us for a quote, we don’t ask for that information either. While the old stereotype that police might spot a speeding red car quicker than a white one may or may not be true, your insurance company is more concerned with the year, make and model of your vehicle when quoting a premium.

Brand new or luxury cars don’t make you a bigger target for thieves. In fact, according to most sources, the most frequently stolen cars are Honda Accords models from the early to mid-1990’s. Unlike newer or more singular cars, 90’s era Accord models are much better suited for thieves to pull in-demand parts like catalytic converters and sell them. Regardless of what you drive, the best way to protect your car against theft is to get comprehensive insurance.

Don’t assume that the longer you’re with your insurance company, the cheaper your rate will be. Longevity with your insurance company doesn’t necessarily guarantee that your rates will go down. While a lot of insurance companies will offer discounts to long-term policyholders, that discount isn’t going to keep you from increased costs in the case of claims or accidents. If your insurance company has to pay out on a claim, they may raise your premium, regardless of how long you’ve been with the company.

Keep in mind that your insurance rates may not drop when you turn 25. While this one isn’t necessarily a myth, it is somewhat conditional. Insurance companies will focus more on years of experience, rather than chronological age when rating a driver. If a driver was licensed at 16, by 25 they have almost a decade of experience. However, someone who waited to get licensed until they were, say, 18 or 19 won’t see as much of a drop when they turn 25. Less experienced drivers represent a higher risk of accident, meaning that they cost more to insure and will pay a higher premium.

No fault accidents still affect your driving record and can affect your insurance premium by extension. Having a no fault accident doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re not at fault. With most insurance companies, what “no fault” means is that the involved insurance companies will pay for the injury-related bills for their policyholders, no matter who may be at fault. Accidents can still show up on your driving record, regardless of whether it was an at fault accident or not.

This is a newer myth, but one that is still worth busting. When buying your insurance policy, keep in mind that full coverage auto insurance won’t actually get you a new car in the event of a crash. Some auto insurance companies have instituted new programs where they will replace your car in the event that your car is totaled. However, that isn’t the case across the insurance industry. If you are unsure about just what is covered by your insurance policy, be sure to have your agent confirm the terms of your policy.

Hopefully this has helped to clear up some of the more prevalent myths that you may come across while shopping for auto insurance. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us at www.alexrue.com.

Common Insurance Mistakes and how to Avoid Them

We get it, buying insurance can sound complicated and confusing, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry in the case of the unexpected, whether it’s a fire or a car accident. In the last few weeks, we’ve talked about a few different types of insurance, but before you run out and start shopping insurance, we wanted to talk about some common mistakes that people make when purchasing insurance and how you can avoid them.

Don’t assume that you can’t afford insurance. Most people assume that insurance is more expensive than it really is. When you’re looking into buying health or property and casualty insurance, always be sure to ask about potential discounts. Even though health insurance discounts can often be income-based, homeowners and auto insurers offer discounts for anything from being a member of AARP, to being a good student, or having a home security system. You never know if you don’t ask.

With that being said, don’t shop insurance policies based completely on price. Make sure that you’re getting the best bang for your buck. Are you buying from a reputable company? Is the coverage they’re offering the best fit for your specific needs? Saving a few bucks may sound good, but you don’t want to total your car and find out that you didn’t have the coverage you need to get it replaced. Whether it’s your home, your car or your health, you want to know that your insurance will cover you when you need it.

Avoid purchasing just the minimum amount of liability for your car. While that may be the only thing required to get you out on the road, covering yourself with the bare minimum means that you could be stuck paying more out of pocket in the case of an accident. In fact you could have your wages garnished or be forced to sell your assets if you don’t have enough insurance to cover your liability. Skip that and make sure that you’re covered if and when you need it.

Don’t assume that the coverage you had in the past still fits your needs. Life is full of changes and those changes can affect your insurance coverage. For example, if you’ve done some home improvements recently, you could be underinsured if the cost to rebuild your home has gone due to higher labor or material costs. That’s why it’s always good to go over your insurance once a year or so to ensure it still fits your needs.

Avoid setting your deductible too low. While it makes sense that you would want to be as little out of pocket as possible in the case of an insurance claim, setting a low deductible typically means that you’ll be paying higher premiums. The point of insurance is to protect against losses that you wouldn’t be able cover yourself, not to completely pay for every loss you incur. If you can afford to cover the first $500-$1,000 of a claim, you’ll save money on your premium.

Don’t skip on renters insurance. It may seem unnecessary, but renter’s insurance covers your possessions in case of theft or insured disaster, like fire. Not only is renter’s insurance relatively inexpensive, but most insurance companies will bundle a renter’s policy in with auto insurance for a low monthly cost, which could result in a multi policy discount as well.

Don’t assume that just because you have insurance you’re covered for any loss that may come up. Understanding what exactly your insurance policy covers is important. Make sure that you actually read your insurance policy and contact your agent if you have questions about what you’re covered for to avoid unpleasant surprises later.

Even though shopping for insurance can seem like a daunting task, it doesn’t always have to be. Hopefully these tips will help to make your shopping experience easier whether you’re purchasing insurance for the first time or even renewing your policy for the 20th time.

Landlord Insurance: What it is and why you need it

Many first time landlords can make the mistake of assuming that their homeowner’s will cover all the costs of their rental property in the event that something happens to their rental property. Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. But don’t worry. We’re here to help you out and explain why a landlord protection policy is not only a good idea but essential if you plan to rent out a property.

In most cases, your homeowner’s policy will only cover the home that you live in yourself. Once a property becomes tenant occupied, the coverage from your homeowner’s policy no longer applies. Since renters are not generally held responsible when a large appliance malfunctions, someone gets injured on the property or there is a burglary, you are the one that will be held liable.

This is why landlord insurance is something that you need. Landlord (or Dwelling Fire) policies are just like homeowner’s policies in that you should make sure that your policy best serves your needs and the property that it is covering.

Now that you know what it is, what exactly should you be looking for in a landlord insurance policy?

First of all, a good landlord insurance policy should offer you three main coverages:

First up is property damage. This is what will cover you in the event that the property or its contents are damaged in a natural disaster such as fire or electric/gas malfunction. It also covers for vandalism of the property or damage caused by irresponsible tenants. If you can, it is always better to purchase a policy that will offer you replacement cost of the property or contents, rather than actual value or a predetermined lump sum of cash. That way you can actually replace the property or furnishings, rather than receiving payment for their depreciated value.

Next is lost rental income or rental default insurance. This coverage is important if something happens to the property which causes it to become totally uninhabitable. Think major fire damage or anything that would keep you from being able to rent the property out. This particular feature of a landlord policy will provide temporary reimbursement for the rent money that you would otherwise receive if tenants were able to occupy the property.

Finally, we have liability protection. This is coverage for the medical or legal costs that might ensue if a tenant or visitor were to suffer and injury because of a property maintenance issue, just as it would if someone were to injure themselves at your home.

As with most lines of insurance, there are additional coverages that can be added to a landlord insurance policy, should you need them, but the three that we just covered are going to be what you should prioritize first.

The important thing to remember is that before you decide that you want to rent out your property, be sure to review your homeowner’s policy. Don’t just assume it will cover your home while you’re not living there. If you want to make sure that you are protecting your home while renting it out, landlord insurance is a must.

Home Insurance: What you SHOULD know

In our last post, we discussed the different lines of coverage associated with auto insurance. This

time, we thought it might be beneficial to talk about another important line of insurance that we deal with regularly: homeowner’s insurance.

Homeowners insurance is what keeps your home and its contents safe in the event of disaster, theft, or accident. Homeowner’s insurance isn’t required by law like auto insurance is, but mortgage companies usually require you to show proof of a homeowner’s policy before they will give you a home loan.

While a typical homeowner’s policy protects your home and possessions from things like fire and fallen trees, your mortgage may require the purchase of additional coverage for earthquakes or floods depending upon where you live.

The same holds true for accidents. If someone were to slip and fall while at your house for say, a Labor Day party, and sprains their ankle, you could be sued for medical expenses associated with the fall. Your homeowner’s insurance covers you in this situation. However, you can always pay more for extra coverage if your property warrants it.

Now that you understand what homeowner’s insurance is and what it covers, you might wonder just how much coverage do you need. The answer is simple. Your home insurance policy should have enough coverage to completely rebuild and refurnish your home if it were to disappear tomorrow.

Our first step when providing a quote for homeowner’s insurance is to get a replacement cost estimate for your home based upon its unique design and features. This estimate is the base from which we begin to build your quote.

The thing to keep in mind is that a standard homeowner’s policy doesn’t exist to cover every conceivable expense associated with your home and it also comes with limits. If you have anything of exceptional value, such as expensive art or heirloom jewelry, you should take out an additional policy to insure them for their full replacement value. This coverage costs extra, but it is definitely better to be safe than sorry when it comes to your valuables.

Just like your auto or health insurance, your homeowners insurance comes with a deductible. And just as with those other policies, choosing a higher deductible causes your insurance premium will be lower because you aren’t causing your insurance company to cover more of your costs than necessary.

We consider these factors together as we build a quote for your home insurance which we provide to you free of charge. Get your homeowner’s quote today at http://alexrue.com/california-home-insurance/.

Auto Insurance 101

We deal with different types of insurance all day, every day. Because of this, we sometimes forget that not everyone understands the different coverages and what they mean to you when you’re purchasing your insurance.

There are a lot of different factors that can affect your purchase of car insurance. Decisions are often based on which policy will serve you best while costing the least amount of money. What people sometimes don’t understand is that car insurance is made up with several different lines of coverage.

Here is a breakdown of what each coverage is to help make your decision a little easier.

Bodily Injury– This is what covers you, or someone driving your car, in the case of injury that happens to the other person in an accident. The proper liability insurance is essential because it helps cover the cost of having to go to court or pay damages if the accident is your fault. Most states require liability insurance before hitting the road, but experts recommend insuring yourself for more than the state required minimum

Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist– Uninsured motorist coverage compensates you if you are involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist. Underinsured reimburses you if the driver at fault has an amount of insurance insufficient to compensate you for a total loss. Both coverages make sure that you get taken care of, even if the other person in the accident wasn’t as responsible as you when it comes to insurance.

Medical Payments or Personal Injury Protection – This will pay the hospital, medical bills and/or lost wages incurred by the driver, or passengers, resulting from an accident.

Property Damage Liability– This is what pays for the damage that you’ve caused to someone else’s automobile or property.

Collision– While collision coverage isn’t mandatory when purchasing your auto insurance policy, this is the coverage that reimburses you for damage to your car that results from an accident. Collision coverage typically has a deductible that you pay up front for repairs.

Comprehensive– This is the coverage that handles anything else that could happen your car: whether it be theft or natural disasters such as fire, earthquakes, falling objects or even being hit by an animal like a deer, or ever more common in Roseville, overly territorial turkeys. Like collision, comprehensive coverage is not mandatory and usually comes with a small deductible.

Ultimately, deciding what insurance you choose comes down to what coverage you need for your vehicle and your driving habits. Now that you understand the different lines of coverage, you can make a more informed decision when it comes to purchasing your auto insurance.

Open Enrollment for Health Insurance Is Here!

It is now open enrollment for 2015 health insurance plans and we are here to help.

Open enrollment for individual plans in 2015 is from November 15 until February 15, 2015.

We can help you determine if you are eligible for tax credits to help pay for your coverage. As a certified insurance agent for Covered California we will help you determine what the best option is for you, your family and your business. Tax credits are available depending on your income – click here to see the income guidelines for 2015.

We represent all the major health plans in the area including Blue Shield of California, Anthem Blue Cross, Sutter Health Plus, Western Health Advantage, Kaiser and more.

Call Alex Rue Insurance today – 916-572-9815 or start your quote online at http://alexrue.com/california-health-insurance/

Covered-California

Instant Earthquake Insurance Quotes and 7 Steps to Earthquake Safety

A lot of our customers have asked us about earthquake insurance after the recent earthquake in Napa.

Call us today to ask about adding earthquake insurance to your policy.

Instant online quotes are available by clicking here. Once you get your quote, give us a call and we will help secure your coverage.

7 Steps to Earthquake Safety

Here are a few steps to earthquake safety from the California Earthquake Country Alliance:

1. Secure Your Space
by identifying your hazards and securing moveable items.
2. Plan to be Safe
by creating a disaster plan and identifying communication needs.
3. Organize Disaster Supplies
in convenient locations.
4. Minimize Financial Hardship
by strengthening your property and considering insurance.
Survive
5. Drop, Cover, and Hold On
when the ground shakes.
6. Improve Safety
by helping the injured, preventing further damage, and evacuating from tsunami zones.
Recover
7. Reconnect and Restore
daily life by reconnecting with others, repairing damage, and rebuilding community.

Covered California Creates Limited Special-Enrollment Period for Those Covered by COBRA

COBRA Enrollees Have 60 Days to Switch to an Exchange Plan; Move Is Expected to Save California Consumers Money on Health Insurance

Beginning Thursday, May 15, Covered California will launch a limited-time special-enrollment period for people who have COBRA health insurance and would like to switch to an exchange plan.

People who have health coverage through COBRA (the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act) will be eligible to shop for and buy coverage through Covered California from May 15 through July 15, 2014. The two-month window mirrors a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) ruling announced May 2 that allows COBRA enrollees to buy plans through the federal exchange until July 1.

The federal policy for the COBRA special-enrollment period was approved amid concerns that notifications did not give consumers clear information about options in the new marketplace. HHS encouraged state exchanges to follow suit.

“COBRA coverage has given vital protection for nearly three decades to people who lost coverage from their employers, especially those who couldn’t get affordable insurance because of their age or a pre-existing condition,” said Covered California Executive Director Peter V. Lee. “Since the passage of the Affordable Care Act, plans in the individual market could be preferable to COBRA coverage because of premium assistance and cost-sharing reductions, available only through the exchanges. For some people who have COBRA coverage, purchasing a plan in the Covered California marketplace during this special-enrollment period could save thousands of dollars a year.”

Under COBRA, individuals who experience a job loss can purchase the coverage they had through their employer but are responsible to pay the full cost. In some cases, individuals and families, particularly if they qualify for subsidies, can purchase more affordable coverage in the health benefit exchanges.

“COBRA will continue to be a cornerstone of coverage for workers after a job loss, but it’s important for employees to know that there are options in the marketplace that could save them money,” Lee said.

This newest category of special enrollment joins a host of “qualifying life events” under the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act that allow consumers to get exchange coverage during a time when open enrollment is not available. Other events include losing coverage, having a child, getting married and moving.

COBRA enrollees who would like to take advantage of this limited special-enrollment period can apply at the Covered California website and select “Other qualifying life event” during the special-enrollment application process.

Ready to sign up? Need more information or want help making the best decision for you? For more information, call Alex Rue Insurance today at 916-572-9815 or email alex@alexrue.com


What is COBRA?
The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985 (COBRA) requires most employers with group health insurance plans to offer employees the opportunity to continue their coverage under their employer’s plan even after termination, layoff or other change in employment status.

When employers offer health coverage, they usually pay part of the monthly premium for their employees. After losing a job, COBRA allows you to continue to be in the employer’s group plan, but you will likely have to pay the full cost of the premium, plus an administrative fee.

Do I have to enroll in COBRA after losing a job?
You are not obligated to participate in COBRA. If you decline the initial offer of COBRA and are therefore newly uninsured, you will qualify for special enrollment in a Covered California health insurance plan. To take advantage of the special enrollment period, you must apply for and select a Covered California plan no more than 60 days after your employer coverage ends.

New information: If you are eligible for or currently enrolled in COBRA coverage, you can enroll in a Covered California health insurance plan through July 15, 2014.

If I lose employer health coverage, how do I decide whether to enroll in COBRA or in a health insurance plan through Covered California?
The choice of which program to enroll in is up to you, but here are some factors to consider when deciding between COBRA and a Covered California health insurance plan:

What doctors and hospitals are available in each plan?
What is the total monthly premium for you and your dependents?
What are the copays and deductibles in the various plans?
You may qualify for tax credits to help pay for a health plan with Covered California. These tax credits may make a difference when you are comparing the cost of COBRA and Covered California plans. The Shop and Compare Tool can help estimate tax credits and the cost of a plan with Covered California.

COBRA coverage and Covered California plans qualify as sufficient coverage to avoid the tax penalty, so choose based on cost and the doctors and medical services that are best for you.

I currently have COBRA. Can I cancel it and enroll in a Covered California health insurance plan?
New information: If you are eligible for or currently enrolled in COBRA coverage, you can enroll in a Covered California health insurance plan through July 15, 2014.

It’s important to know that if you decide to drop COBRA and enroll in a Covered California plan, you cannot change your mind and go back to COBRA. If you drop COBRA, you will not be able to return to your plan.

After July 15, 2014, you cannot drop your COBRA plan and enroll in a Covered California plan unless it is an open enrollment period at Covered California. You will not be eligible for special enrollment if you stop paying your COBRA premium or cancel your COBRA. After July 15, 2014, you will not be eligible for a special enrollment unless someone responsible for remitting payments for your COBRA premium (for example, your former employer) fails to do so on a timely basis, you move out of the plan coverage area and there is no COBRA continuation coverage available, or you reach your plan’s lifetime limit for benefits. If none of these reasons apply, and unless you have another qualifying life event for special enrollment, you will have to wait until the next open enrollment period to cancel your COBRA and sign up for a Covered California health insurance plan. The next open enrollment period will be in the fall of 2014.

When will my Covered California health insurance plan be effective if I enroll during the special enrollment period for COBRA (May 15 – July 15, 2014)?
Your coverage start date depends on when you select a plan and pay the premium to your new plan. If you complete plan selection by June 15, with payment of initial premium by the due date, coverage starts on July 1. If you complete plan selection by July 15, with payment of initial premium by the due date, coverage starts on Aug. 1.

Do I have to cancel my COBRA plan before enrolling in a Covered California plan
No. Using the plan start dates described above, you can plan to cancel your COBRA plan the day before your Covered California plan takes effect.

How do I apply for a Covered California health insurance plan?
You can apply online at CoveredCA.com. These important tips will help you in the application:

When asked about your reason for special enrollment, select “other qualifying life event.”
Enter the date you are applying as the date of your event.
When the application asks if you have other health coverage, select “None” even if you currently have a COBRA plan.
You will need to select a plan and pay the health insurance company before your coverage will be effective.
My employer agreed to pay for a few months of my COBRA coverage. Can I enroll in a Covered California health insurance plan after my employer stops paying for my COBRA?
No, if your employer pays your COBRA premium for a limited time and then stops paying your COBRA premium, that loss of COBRA will not qualify you for special enrollment in a Covered California plan. If you go without health insurance coverage, you may face a penalty when you pay your taxes. You can enroll in a Covered California health insurance plan during open enrollment. The next open enrollment period will be in the fall of 2014.

Ready to sign up? Need more information or want help making the best decision for you? For more information, call Alex Rue Insurance today at 916-572-9815 or email alex@alexrue.com

Covered CA extension until April 15th

Record-setting numbers of people trying to sign up for Covered California™ health insurance plans overwhelmed the system on the final day of open enrollment, prompting the exchange to allow consumers who had trouble enrolling by the deadline to work with a certified delegate to finish their application by April 15.

Because of the staggering demands on the system, Covered California announced the following policy this afternoon:

Consumers who were unable to create an online account or start their online application because of technical difficulties can contact Covered California Service Center representatives, Covered California Certified Enrollment Counselors, Covered California Certified Insurance Agents (that’s Alex Rue Insurance – we can help you), Certified Plan-Based Enrollers and county eligibility workers to explain that they attempted to get through on March 31 and experienced difficulties. Those consumers will have until 11:59 p.m. April 15 to work with the assister to complete their application and choose a plan.

Consumers who created an online account and completed the first page of the application by 11:59 p.m. March 31, 2014, will be able to complete their application for the open-enrollment period, either by themselves online or with the help of a certified delegate. Consumers must complete the application and select a plan by 11:59 p.m. April 15, 2014. Those enrollees will receive coverage effective May 1.

Is Business Use Covered on My Personal Auto Policy?

If you use your personal vehicle for business or commercial use, you may want to double check your insurance policy and see if you are covered.

You’ll need to look into buying a commercial vehicle policy or make sure your existing personal auto policy includes coverage for business use. Every company has different guidelines on what they consider business use. They may not cover business use without an extra surcharge or they may not cover it at all depending on what you do.

If after looking over your policy you aren’t sure whether you are covered for business use, here’s a few items that can help.

How to determine if you need a commercial policy

  1. Call your agent or insurance company

    Ask your agent if you need a commercial vehicle policy. They can help you with your unique situation.

  2. Ask your current company how they determine commercial use?

    One definition could include “engaging in transporting goods for compensation or a fee,” which includes pizza or newspaper delivery, catering, door-to-door consulting services, landscaping or snowplowing services, logging business, day care/church van services or farm-to-market delivery. People who do these kinds of work should consider purchasing a commercial vehicle policy.

  3. Do you need more liability coverage than a personal auto policy provides?

    Generally, a commercial auto policy offers higher limits of liability than a personal vehicle policy.

  4. Do you need special coverage for situations encountered while conducting business?

    Commercial auto policies usually offer these coverages, and they’re normally not available with personal auto policies. These include hired and nonowned auto coverage and coverage for towing a trailer for business use.

  5. Do you need to list any employees as drivers?

    Commercial auto policies allow you to list anyone that you employ. You don’t have that option with a personal auto policy.

  6. Do you need any special filings or a Motor Carrier Permit?

    You’ll need commercial auto coverage if the vehicle you use is owned by a corporate partnership or driven by employees, or if it’s used to haul tools or equipment weighing more than 500 pounds, make deliveries or heavy enough to require state or federal filings.

Business Auto Insurance Roseville, CA

Alex Rue Insurance Agency, Inc. is an independent insurance agency in Roseville, CA representing top-rated insurance companies in California that write commercial auto insurance. We provide rates from multiple California insurance companies to find you the best coverage at the lowest price. As an independent insurance agency we’re here to help you find the best insurance policy for you.

Call Alex Rue Insurance Agency at 916-572-9815 to see if a commercial auto policy may be right for you or if you can add business use to your personal policy.

Start your quote online or call Alex Rue Insurance Agency today at 916-572-9815.

Superbowl Party Recipe – Salsa Con Queso

Super Bowl XLVII

It’s Super Bowl weekend! Here’s a recipe for a simple dip that you can serve at your Super Bowl shin-dig on Sunday. Cook it up and serve it right out of your crock pot – goes great with chips!

 

 

 

 

Salsa Con Queso Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 block Velveeta cheese
  • 1 12 oz can refried beans
  • 1 12 oz jar salsa
  • 1 lb browned ground beef
  • 1 cup milk

Directions:
Combine all ingredients into crockpot. Heat on high for 1-2 hours. Makes enough dip for about 10 people.

876 New Laws for 2013 in California

California passed 876 new laws, most of which take effect today (1/1/13).

CRIME/ PUBLIC SAFETY

Youth offender resentence

SB 9 allows some people convicted of murder, if they had committed the crime as a minor, to seek resentencing to a prison term of 25 years to life. (Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco)

Picketing at funerals

SB 661 makes picketing at funerals a misdemeanor, taking aim at a group that has waved signs at funerals of homosexuals, military members and federal judges. (Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance)

Open carrying of rifles

AB 1527 bans openly carrying unloaded rifles on city streets, with exceptions for people engaged in hunting, target shooting, parades, licensed gun shows, firearms sales or other such activities. (former Assemblyman Anthony Portantino, D-La Cañada-Flintridge)

Compassionate release

SB 1462 gives county sheriffs the right to release dying jail inmates early and authorizes a court to grant medical probation to an incapacitated inmate. (Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco)

Metal purchases

AB 1971 quadruples the maximum fine from $250 to $1,000 for junk and secondhand dealers who knowingly buy or receive metals used in telephone, electricity or other public utilities. (Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan, D-Alamo)

EDUCATION

Academic Performance Index

SB 1458 de-emphasizes standardized tests in evaluating public schools and requires other factors such as graduation rates and college-going rates to be used in calculating a school’s Academic Performance Index. (Sen. Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento)

Evaluation of principals

SB 1292 authorizes school districts to evaluate principals annually for the first and second year of employment as a new principal in a district. (Sen. Carol Liu, D-La Cañada-Flintridge)

Digital textbooks

SB 1052 and 1053 set the stage for producing digital textbooks for 50 of the most widely taken lower-division courses at California colleges and universities, when money is available, and creates an open-source library to house such materials. (Sen. Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento)

HEALTH

Immunization information

AB 2109 requires parents to receive information from a health care provider before exempting their child from immunizations. (Assemblyman Richard Pan, D-Sacramento)

Birth control access

AB 2348 expands women’s access to birth control by allowing registered nurses to dispense such drugs or devices in primary care and other clinics. (Assemblywoman Holly J. Mitchell, D-Los Angeles)

Health insurance standards

AB 1453 and SB 951 set minimum standards for medical services – such as emergency treatment, maternity and newborn care – that insurers must meet starting in 2014. (Respectively, then- Assemblyman and now Sen. Bill Monning, D-Carmel, and Sen. Ed Hernández, D-West Covina)

Nonsurgical abortions

SB 623 extends, until January 2014, a program allowing nurse practitioners, midwives and physician assistants to perform nonsurgical abortions. (former Sen. Christine Kehoe, D-San Diego)

Mammography insurance

AB 137 requires health insurance policies to cover mammographies, for screening or diagnostic purposes, upon referral by doctors or various other health care practitioners. (former Assemblyman Anthony Portantino, D-La Cañada-Flintridge)

CIVIL RIGHTS/IMMIGRANTS

Driver’s licenses

AB 2189 allows an estimated 400,000 undocumented immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses – those in the federal Deferred Action program for immigrants who came to the U.S. as youths and have led generally productive lives. (former Assemblyman Gil Cedillo, D-Los Angeles)

Religious grooming

AB 1964 bans discrimination based on religious dress or grooming, such as Sikhs’ turbans. (Assemblywoman Mariko Yamada, D-Davis)

Sexual orientation therapy

SB 1172 prohibits therapy on homosexual or other minors that attempts to alter their sexual orientation. Legal challenges are pending. (Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance)

TRANSPORTATION

Red-light cameras

SB 1303 tightens restrictions on the use of red-light traffic cameras but bolsters their legal underpinnings by stating that evidence from them is not hearsay. (Former Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto)

Hands-free texting

AB 1536 allows drivers to dictate, send or listen to text messages with a hands-free device. (Former Assemblyman Jeff Miller, R-Corona)

Motorcycle checkpoints

AB 1047 prohibits local governments from conducting motorcycle-only checkpoints. (Former Assemblyman Kevin Jeffries, R-Lake Elsinore)

Driverless vehicles

SB 1298 permits testing autonomous vehicles – cars that drive themselves – on public roads subject to safety certification and the presence of a human in case of an emergency. (Sen. Alex Padilla, D-Los Angeles)

Carpool lane exceptions

AB 2405 exempts certain hybrid and other clean-fuel vehicles from paying a toll to use HOT carpool lanes accepting single-occupant vehicles. (Assemblyman Bob Blumenfield, D-Woodland Hills)

CONSUMERS

Homeowner mortgages

SB 900 and AB 278 are cornerstones of a six-bill package to expand homeowner rights against foreclosure. A key provision bars “dual tracking” by which lenders proceed toward foreclosure while discussing possible loan modifications. (Respectively, Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, and former Assemblyman Mike Eng, D-Monterey Park)

Vehicle financing

AB 1447 sets basic consumer protections for predatory financing of vehicle sales or leases by dealers, including a minimum 30-day warranty and restrictions on in-person payment requirements and use of electronic devices to track and disable vehicles. (Former Assemblyman Mike Feuer, D-Los Angeles)

Online rent payments

SB 1055 bars landlords from requiring online payments. (Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance)

Loan protections

SB 978 strengthens laws meant to protect investors and borrowers of “hard money” – a private, high- interest loan secured by steep collateral requirements and generally offered to people unable to qualify for conventional bank loans. (Sen. and Rep.-elect Juan Vargas, D-San Diego)

Settlement gag clauses

AB 2570 bans settlement gag clauses that bar someone who files suit against a licensed state professional – such as doctor, engineer or contractor – from talking with or cooperating with state regulators. (Former Assemblyman, now Sen. Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo)

INTERNET/

SOCIAL MEDIA

Internet phone service

SB 1161 bars the state Public Utilities Commission from regulating the Internet-based voice industry until January 2020. (Sen. Alex Padilla, D-Los Angeles)

Social media privacy

SB 1349 bans public and private universities from requiring students to disclose user names or passwords for social media, such as Facebook. (Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco)

Employer prohibitions

AB 1844 prohibits employers from demanding a worker’s or an applicant’s user name or password for social media. (Assemblywoman Nora Campos, D-San Jose)

Internet bullying

AB 1732 specifies that forms of illegal Internet bullying include false profiles, impersonations and “burn pages” created to house abusive posts. (Assemblywoman Nora Campos, D-San Jose)

BUSINESS

Private-sector savings

SB 1234 lays groundwork, but does not grant final approval, to a state-run retirement savings plan for private-sector employees. (Sen. Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles)

Homemade food sales

AB 1616 legalizes and sets standards for selling various products made in home kitchens, such as breads, tortillas, cookies, churros and jams. (Assemblyman Mike Gatto, D-Los Angeles)

Commercial space flight

AB 2243 limits liability of commercial space flight firms for injuries that don’t involve intentional or grossly negligent actions. (then Assemblyman, now Sen. Steve Knight, R-Palmdale)

ENVIRONMENT

Plastic bag recycling

SB 1219 extends until January 2020 a program ensuring plastic bags are accepted for recycling at supermarkets and large stores that include a pharmacy. (Sen. Lois Wolk, D-Davis)

Solid waste transfers

AB 845 bans cities or counties from restricting transfer of solid waste to private companies based on where it came from. The law intervenes in a Solano County fight over accepting trash from San Francisco. (Former Assemblywoman Fiona Ma, D-San Francisco)

LABOR

Pension system changes

AB 340 alters California’s massive public employees pension system by capping benefits, lowering benefit formulas for workers hired after Jan. 1, and by requiring current and future employees to begin paying half the cost of their pension within five years. (Former Assemblyman Warren Furutani, D-Los Angeles)

Workers’ compensation insurance

SB 863 increases benefits for workers injured on the job by creating savings through changes to the workers’ compensation insurance system designed to reduce lawsuits over treatment and compensation. (Sen. Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles)

Project labor agreements

SB 829 bans use of state funds for charter city construction projects if officials have prohibited project labor agreements. (Sen. Michael Rubio, D-East Bakersfield)

ANIMALS

Hunting with dogs

SB 1221 bars use of dogs to hunt bears and bobcats, except for depredation, research or when dogs are guarding crops or livestock. (Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance)

Poaching fines

AB 1162 quadruples from $10,000 to $40,000 the maximum penalty for poaching trophy deer, elk, antelope or bighorn sheep. (Assemblyman Wesley Chesbro, D-Arcata)

Cock fighting

SB 1145 doubles the maximum fine for cockfighting, to $10,000, and raises the fines for initiating other forms of animal fighting or attending such events. (Sen. Bill Emmerson, R-Hemet)

ELECTIONS

Same-day registration

AB 1436 allows qualified residents to register to vote up to and on Election Day, but would not take effect until 2014 at the earliest. (former Assemblyman Mike Feuer, D-Los Angeles)

Violating public trust

AB 2410 bans the candidacy of a person convicted of a felony involving bribes, perjury or offenses of the public trust. (former Assemblyman Felipe Fuentes, D-Sylmar)

OTHER

Ronald Reagan statue

AB 2358 authorizes a Ronald Reagan statute at the Capitol, subject to design approval by the Legislature’s Joint Rules Committee and solicitation of private funding. (Assemblyman Curt Hagman, R-Chino Hills, and former Assemblyman Martin Garrick, R-Solana Beach)

Good Samaritan

AB 472 bars a person from being arrested on drug use or possession charges after summoning medical help for an overdose involving anyone. (Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, D-San Francisco)

Check out the full article at Sacramento Bee..

4 Reasons You May Need Life Insurance

If someone depends on you financially, chances are you need California life insurance.

  1. Are you married?
  2. Do you have children or are expecting one?
  3. Do you financially support an elderly parent?
  4. Do you have debt and/or a mortgage?

If your answer is yes to just one of these questions, then your need for CA life insurance may be high.

Life insurance can help your loved ones meet important financial needs beyond final expenses including daily living expenses, medical expenses, mortgage payments, and college savings. The loss of a loved one is hard enough emotionally without having it compounded by financial worries from the potential loss of an income.

But many times what you need and what you can afford are two different things. That’s where the advice of a good independent life insurance agent (like Alex Rue) can be invaluable.

How much California life insurance coverage do you need?

Everyone’s situation is different. When determining your insurance needs, consider this:

If you were gone tomorrow, how much money would your family need to replace your income and for how long?

How much would it cost to pay off your mortgage and other debts?

How much would your loved ones need to afford ongoing and future financial needs like college costs?

Contact me for a complete needs analysis to determine the amount of coverage you need to protect your family.

Let’s talk

I would love to meet with you to help determine how much coverage you need and balance that with what you can afford.

I’ll compare rates from my top-rated CA life insurance companies (taking into account your needs and budget) to get you the coverage you need at a price you can afford.

I’m here to find the best solution for you.

Don’t wait until it’s too late

The younger and healthier you are, the more affordable California life insurance is.

Lock in your rate today and protect the people that depend on you.

Start your life insurance quotes online or call Alex Rue today at (916) 572-9815

 

5 Things To Think About Before Buying Health Insurance

health insurance California

There are a few things that are important to consider before switching coverage or purchasing health insurance in California for the first time.
health insurance California

1. Compare health insurance quotes. We all have different needs, make sure you find a plan that meets your budget and takes care of your health care needs.

2. Pay attention to deductibles and out of pocket maximums. Weigh the difference in lower premiums and higher deductibles. Make sure you can manage your deductible if you have to spend the whole amount. If you have a serious injury or illness meeting a high deductible can be hard.

3. Make sure your plan includes the doctors and hospitals that you are looking for.

4. Take a look at the copayment rates and coinsurance rates for doctor visits, surgeries and prescriptions.

5. Talk to an independent insurance agent. Get an unbiased review of each company in context with your needs. Get help choosing the right health insurance plan for you.

 

Roseville insurance agent, Alex Rue is here to help with all of your health insurance needs in California.

 

Call (916) 572-9815, send him a message or start your health insurance quotes online.


Alex Rue compares rates from top-rated health insurance companies
Alex Rue compares rates from top-rated health insurance companies to get you the best coverage at the lowest price!

Get a free health insurance quote

5 Ways To Save Money on Your California Auto Insurance

We are all looking for ways to save money these days. If you are looking to save on your California auto insurance, I’m here to help.

There are several things that affect how much you pay for insurance. Some you can control (like what car you drive), some you can’t (like how old you are).

1. The Car You Drive.

Insurance rates vary quite a bit based on what you are driving. Cars that cost more to fix are going to cost more to insure. If a car has a high theft rate, it’s going to be more expensive.

If you are in the market for a new car, find out how much the insurance is going to be ahead of time. Regardless of how cool your car is, if it’s costing you a fortune to insure you might regret it.

2. Where You Live

Different areas have different prices for insurance. If you move from Sacramento, CA to Roseville, CA your insurance prices will probably change. Depending on the company it could be in your favor or you could be paying more.

Areas with less traffic or less crime may have cheaper rates. But every company is different, that’s why it is important to get multiple quotes. An independent agent can do that for you in one call.

3. Your Driving Record

If you have tickets or accidents on your record you may have to pay more for insurance. Some companies may charge you exorbitant rates, or decline coverage all together.

You can save money by driving safer and trying to avoid accidents. If you do get a ticket, take traffic school if at all possible. If you take traffic school it will take the violation of your record and save you on your future insurance costs.

Most companies charge for accidents and violations for 3 years, but some may charge up to 5 years. A DUI usually stays on your record for 10 years.

If you already have a bad driving record, you have options. We all make mistakes and we should try to learn from them. In the meantime, talk to a good independent insurance agent to find the best rate. There are companies out there that specialize in insurance for people with bad driving records.

4. How Old You Are

Unfortunately, we can’t control how old we are. But, typically, as we age, we gain experience and become better drivers. So as we get older, we can get better rates on our insurance. So after a birthday, see if you can give yourself the present of better insurance rates.

5. Who your insurance agent is

Most insurance agents only represent one company. Even if they are looking out for your best interest, they are at the mercy of what their company wants to charge.

If you have a good independent insurance agent, they will compare rates for you. I shop rates with multiple companies not only when a new customer comes into my office, but also at every renewal. I like to make sure that my clients are still getting the best deal on their insurance. Things change, and I believe your insurance agent should change with you.

I hope these tips help you out on your quest to save money on your California auto insurance.

When you are ready, give me a call at (916) 572-9815, start your quote online at AlexRue.com or visit me at my office in Roseville, CA. I’ll compare rates from multiple companies and find you the best coverage at the lowest price.

Why work with an independent insurance agent?

Not all insurance agents are the same. Many people are unaware that there are different types of insurance agents that they can work with.

A captive insurance agent only sells one brand of insurance – the company they work for.

An independent insurance agent represents multiple companies and brands. They can compare coverage and prices to find the best possible value for your individual circumstances.

As an independent insurance agency, Alex Rue Insurance Agency:

  • Works for you when you have a claim
  • Is not limited to only one company. If your needs change, Alex Rue changes with you
  • Is your personal advocate and counselor, working with you to determine your needs
  • Is a value-hunter looking to find the best combination of price, coverage, service and over-all value
  • Offers one-stop shopping for all of your insurance needs: Auto, Home, Health, Life & Business Insurance
  • Is committed to your satisfaction – our existence depends on it
  • Treats you like a person, not a number
  • Is here to meet with you face-to-face, don’t get stuck waiting on hold for an out-sourced call center

So what are you waiting for? Experience the Alex Rue Difference and get the service you deserve.

Call Alex at (916) 572-9815, send a message or visit our office in Roseville, CA today!

My Wife’s Apple Pie Recipe

My wife’s co-worker has been bugging her for her apple pie recipe and after my wife forgot it again, she asked me to type it up and email it to her. Since I already typed it up I figured I would share it. Here it is – hope you enjoy it as much as I do. Happy Thanksgiving!

Nicole’s Apple Pie Recipe

Filling
6 cups apples
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 1/2 tbl sp butter

Bake @ 420 10 min
Reduce heat to 350, bake 50 min

5 Safe Driving Tips For This Halloween

According to Safe Kids USA, children are twice as likely to be killed by a vehicle on Halloween compared to other days of the year. Take extra caution behind the wheel on Halloween and use the following driving tips to keep trick-or-treaters safe.

  • Yield to Trick-or-Treaters: Be prepared for children to run into the street at anytime
  • Refrain From Passing Idle Vehicles: You never know when the driver in front of you has stopped to drop children off. Be patient and take extra caution when traveling near other vehicles. 
  • Park Your Mobile Phone: With children crowding the dark roads, it is especially important to avoid any distractions while behind the wheel. 
  • Communicate With Other Drivers: Use hazard lights when picking-up or dropping-off trick-or-treaters. And, always use turn signals. 
  • Consider Alternate Routes: Avoid driving near trick-or-treaters by taking routes that go around busy neighborhoods, not through them.