California Casualty Insurance review: Car and home

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California Casualty Insurance was founded in 1914 and has been selling insurance policies for over 100 years. The company’s mission is to protect people that serve the community, which is why California Casualty Insurance only sells insurance coverage to educators, firefighters, law enforcement officers and nurses.

Despite what the name suggests, California Casualty sells insurance in every state except Alaska, Hawaii, Michigan, New York and Wisconsin.

California Casualty car insurance

California Casualty car insurance stands out for its unique coverage options, many of which are designed with teachers and first responders in mind. In addition, the company offers some good discounts that can help drivers save money on their policy. The website lacks online tools or resources, but it does contain helpful information about what the policies cover.

Types of coverage

In addition to basic coverage, California Casualty Insurance offers specific coverages for its core customer groups, like law enforcement officers, firefighters and nurses. Here are the coverages available from California Casualty:

  • Basic coverage: California Casualty offers collision, comprehensive, liability, medical payments and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.
  • Roadside assistance: Drivers can purchase roadside assistance coverage with 24-hour emergency towing services.
  • Gap insurance: Gap insurance is available, which is ideal for drivers who have a leased or financed car.
  • Custom equipment coverage: Custom equipment coverage will pay to repair or replace non-factory equipment installed in a vehicle.
  • Identity theft coverage: Identity theft coverage pays for the cost of identity restoration services, like credit monitoring.
  • Pet injury coverage: Pet injury coverage is available if a cat or dog is injured in a car accident.
  • Personal property coverage: California Casualty offers up to $500 in personal property coverage if a vehicle is damaged or stolen.
  • Educator coverage: Educators can purchase foreign exchange programs coverage, sabbatical return benefits coverage and a deductible waiver.
  • Firefighters/law enforcement: Firefighters, police officers, peace officers and law enforcement officers can get turnout gear coverage, firearms coverage, fallen hero/fallen officer survivor benefit coverage and a deductible waiver.

Cost of California Casualty car insurance

A car insurance policy from California Casualty is typically expensive for most drivers. The average driver pays $2,306 annually for a full coverage policy from California Casualty and $561 for a minimum coverage policy. In comparison, the average cost of full coverage car insurance in the United States is $1,738 per year, although California’s average is slightly higher at $2,012 per year.

Average Annual Cost of Minimum Coverage Average Annual Cost of Full Coverage
$561 $2,306

Drivers looking for cheap car insurance will probably find a more affordable policy elsewhere. However, keep in mind that every driver pays a different rate for their car insurance. Factors like your age, driving record and claims history are considered when insurance companies calculate a driver’s personalized rate. In California, insurance companies are not allowed to consider your credit score, ZIP code or gender when calculating your premium.

Discounts

California Casualty auto insurance has a 12-month rate lock guarantee for every policy. Additionally, drivers can access several discounts to save money, which include:

  • Multi-policy discount
  • Multi-car discount
  • Good student discount
  • College graduate discount
  • Mature driver discount

California Casualty home insurance

California Casualty Insurance promises affordable rates for its home insurance, designed for law enforcement officers, firefighters, nurses and educators. Customers can choose from a variety of add-on coverages that most other insurance companies do not offer, and there are also several discounts available.

Types of coverage:

California Casualty is dedicated to serving the heroes in the community. That is why many of the home insurance coverages meet specific needs for people like teachers and firefighters. Here are the coverage types available from California Casualty home insurance:

  • Basic coverage: Homeowners can get basic coverage, which includes dwelling, personal property, liability, medical payments and additional living expenses coverage.
  • Identity theft protection: Identity theft coverage is sold as an add-on policy and covers the cost of identity restoration services.
  • Lost luggage coverage: Policies include up to $500 in lost luggage coverage while traveling.
  • Credit card fraud coverage: California Casualty will pay up to $1,000 in unauthorized debit or credit card transactions.
  • Teachers’ personal property coverage: California Casualty will cover up to $3,000 in personal property used in teaching with a $0 deductible.
  • Fundraising coverage: Homeowners can get up to $500 in stolen fundraising money and goods coverage with a $0 deductible.
  • Educators excess liability coverage: Teachers can purchase additional liability coverage through California Casualty.
  • School violence death benefit: If a teacher is killed in a school violence incident, their loved ones can receive a death benefit. This coverage is not available in Georgia, Montana, New Hampshire, Texas or Virginia.
  • Off-duty weapons theft coverage: Law enforcement officers and firefighters can get up to $5,000 in coverage for stolen, personally-owned off-duty weapons.
  • Turnout gear coverage: This coverage will pay for stolen or damaged uniforms for law enforcement officers and firefighters.
  • Fallen hero/fallen officer survivor benefit: If a firefighter or law enforcement officer dies in the line of duty, their loved ones will receive a death benefit.

Discounts:

In terms of home insurance discounts, California Casualty offers many of the same savings opportunities that other insurance companies have, including:

  • Multi-policy discount
  • Non-smoker discount
  • Age 55+/retired discount
  • Home alert protection discount
  • Automatic sprinkler discount
  • Fire alarm/extinguisher discount

Reasons why California Casualty is a great option:

California Casualty is one of the most unique insurance companies on the market. It is a great option for people eligible based on certain professions, which includes law enforcement officers, firefighters, nurses and educators. People in these jobs can access specialized coverage tailored to provide them with added peace of mind.

However, California Casualty serves a very niche market. Most people shopping for auto or homeowners insurance will not qualify for coverage through the company. Additionally, this provider is not ideal for people who are looking for cheap insurance; the average full coverage policy costs over $550 more than the United States national average rate.

Additional policies offered by California Casualty

In addition to auto and home insurance, California Casualty offers the following insurance policies:

  • Motorcycle insurance
  • RV insurance
  • Boat insurance
  • Snowmobile insurance
  • Renters insurance
  • Condo insurance
  • Mobile home insurance
  • Earthquake insurance
  • Flood insurance
  • Umbrella insurance
  • Pet insurance

California Casualty ratings, reviews, customer satisfaction and complaints

California Casualty reviews are mixed across the board. The company has a B++ rating from AM Best, indicating ‘Good’ financial strength. In comparison, most of the largest insurance companies, like Nationwide and Geico, have financial strength scores of A or better.

California Casualty is not rated by J.D. Power. According to the Better Business Bureau (BBB), California Casualty has an A+ rating, but an average score of 1 out of 5 stars based on customer reviews. Customers frequently complained about poor claims handling, low claim payouts and poor customer service.

Frequently asked questions:

What is the best auto insurance company?

The best auto insurance company is different for every driver. For some people, Geico is the best option, and Amica is the best choice for others. In addition to these two providers, Allstate, USAA, Nationwide or The Hartford might be a good fit for drivers looking for the best car insurance. It’s a good idea to shop around and compare rates and then speak with a licensed insurance agent before purchasing a policy.

What is the best home insurance company?

Like with car insurance, the best home insurance company is different for everyone. Start by looking into Amica, Allstate, Travelers and MetLife. Compare each provider based on coverages, discounts and customer service reviews. Then, get sample quotes from a few providers and compare them. The best home insurance company is the one that can offer the lowest price for the amount of coverage needed.

Where is California Casualty Insurance available?

California Casualty Insurance is available in most states. Customers can purchase insurance in every state except Alaska, Hawaii, Michigan, New York and Wisconsin. However, keep in mind that some coverages and discounts are not available in every state.

Methodology

Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Quoted rates are based on a 40-year-old male and female driver with a cleaning driving record, good credit and the following full coverage limits:

  • $100,000 bodily injury liability per person
  • $300,000 bodily injury liability per accident
  • $50,000 property damage liability per accident
  • $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per person
  • $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per accident
  • $500 collision deductible
  • $500 comprehensive deductible

To determine minimum coverage limits, Bankrate used minimum coverages that meet each state’s requirements. Our sample drivers own a 2018 Honda Accord, commute five days a week and drive 12,000 miles annually.

These are sample rates and should be used for comparative purposes only. Your quotes may be different.

Written by
Elizabeth Rivelli
Insurance Contributor
Elizabeth has two years of experience writing for insurance domains such as Bankrate.com, The Simple Dollar, Coverage.com and NextAdvisor, among others. In addition to auto insurance, Elizabeth regularly writes about home insurance, renters insurance and life insurance. She also covers industry trends and general insurance education.
Edited by
Insurance Editor