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California Commissioner of Insurance

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California Commissioner of Insurance
General information
Office Type:  Partisan
Office website:  Official Link
2012-2013 FY Budget:  $225,276,000
Term limits:  2 terms
Length of term:   4 years
Authority:  California Insurance Code, Division 3, Chapter 1, Section 12906
Selection Method:  Elected
Current Officeholder

Dave Jones.jpg
Name:  Dave Jones
Officeholder Party:  Democratic
Assumed office:  January 3, 2011
Compensation:  $139,189
Next election:  November 6, 2018
Last election:  November 4, 2014
Other California Executive Offices
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The California Commissioner of Insurance is an elected state executive position in the California state government. The commissioner oversees the California Department of Insurance, which regulates the state's insurance industry. The Department of Insurance is charged with licensing insurance companies and reviewing their financial statements, establishing rate regulations, investigating consumer complaints and punishing insurers with fines or penalties for regulatory noncompliance.

Current officeholder

The current commissioner is Dave Jones, a Democrat. He was first elected in November 2010 and took office on January 3, 2011. Jones won re-election on November 4, 2014.[1]


The office of commissioner of insurance is established by California statute.[2]

California Insurance Code, Section 12906

12906. The governmental agency unit heretofore known as the Department of Insurance in the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency is hereby made an independent department. The Department of Insurance is under the control of the Insurance Commissioner.


State law requires the commissioner to be "a person competent and fully qualified to perform the duties of the office" without specifically addressing what that means. Additionally, the commissioner may not have any personal financial interest in the California insurance industry.[3] The commissioner must also fulfill the usual requirements for officers in California's civil service; he or she must be a resident of the state, at least 18 years of age, not a convicted felon, and not a member of the Communist Party or any other organization that advocates the overthrow of the U.S. government.[4]

California Insurance Code, Section 12901

The commissioner shall be a person competent and fully qualified to perform the duties of the office. Neither the commissioner nor any deputy or employee shall during his or their tenure of office be an officer, agent or employee of an insurer or directly or indirectly interested in any insurer or licensee under this code, except (a) as a policyholder, or, (b) by virtue of relationship by blood or marriage to any person interested in any insurer or licensee.

If the commissioner or any deputy or employee holds any license or permit issued under this code, he shall surrender it for cancellation within 10 days after appointment and qualification. Upon termination of his office or employment such license or permit shall be reissued for the balance of the then current license or permit year without fee or penalty.


California state government organizational chart

Insurance commissioners are elected for four-year terms at the same time as the governor, i.e. during federal midterm election years (2006, 2010, 2014, etc.).[5]


See also: California down ballot state executive elections, 2014
Insurance Commissioner of California, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngDave Jones Incumbent 57.5% 4,038,165
     Republican Ted Gaines 42.5% 2,981,951
Total Votes 7,020,116
Election Results via California Secretary of State.

Term limits

Like all elected California executive officials, the insurance commissioner may not serve more than two terms.[5]


When a vacancy occurs, the governor appoints a replacement to serve out the remainder of the term with the approval of both houses of the state legislature.[6]


The commissioner, as head of the California Department of Insurance, is responsible for regulating the state's insurance industry. The department licenses insurance providers, approves all rate or premium increases, investigates consumer complaints and allegations of fraud, analyzes insurance policy issues, and supervises the financial well-being of insurance companies. The department is also responsible for winding down the operations of bankrupt insurance companies and liquidating their assets. It also publishes a variety of information for consumers, including insurance news, guides and legal info.


  • Consumer Services & Market Conduct
  • Community Relations Branch
  • Fraud
  • Rate Regulation
  • Legal
  • Office of the Ombudsman
  • Policy and Regulations
  • Legislative
  • Conservation and Liquidation[7]

State budget

See also: California state budget and finances

The budget for the California Department of Insurance in the 2012-2013 Fiscal Year was $225,276,000.[8]


See also: Compensation of state executive officers

The salaries of California's elected executives are determined by the California Citizens Compensation Commission, a seven-member board appointed by the governor to six-year terms. The commission was established after voters passed Proposition 112, an amendment to the California Constitution, in 1990. Commissioners meet prior to June 30 of each year to determine salary recommendations with changes effective the following December. From 2001 to 2013, the commission voted to increase salaries or benefits five times and decreased or made no changes to salaries eight times.[9]


In 2014, the commissioner received a salary of $139,189, according to the Council of State Governments.[10]


In 2013, the commissioner received a salary of $139,189, according to the Council of State Governments.[11]


In 2010, the commissioner received a salary of $139,189, according to the Council of State Governments.[12]

Historical officeholders

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the terms "California Commissioner of Insurance."

Some of the stories below may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of Google's news search engine.

California Commissioner of Insurance - Google News Feed

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Contact info

Sacramento office address:
300 Capital Mall, Suite 1700
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: (916) 492-3500
Fax: (916) 445-5280

See also

External links