Monthly Archives: December 2014

A Liability Risk for Airbnb Hosts

By Ron Lieber, Dec 5, 2014

Over the last few years, Uber and Airbnb have come to be known as leaders of something called the sharing economy.

Give their founders credit for this feat of mostly misplaced nomenclature. The companies help people sell rides in cars and rent stays in homes; they deserve no more credit for promoting a skill learned in preschool than Marriott or taxi companies.

But here’s one thing they do love to share: risk. Uber grew by heaping it on many drivers, asking them to push damage claims through their personal insurance companies while knowing that those companies did not cover commercial activity.

And now comes Airbnb with its  Read the full article…

California auto insurance fraud investigation nets 54 Bay Area arrests

A statewide investigation into auto insurance fraud resulted in the arrest of 54 people throughout the Bay Area, the state Department of Insurance announced Wednesday.

The investigation into the allegedly fraudulent claims could have resulted in more than $250,000 in losses in the Bay Area, state insurance officials said.

Department detectives partnered with district attorney’s offices in Alameda, Contra Costa, San Francisco, Santa Clara and Solano counties and local law enforcement agencies.

Most of the cases involved uninsured or underinsured drivers who had allegedly bought or added coverage following a collision or for damage sustained, according to state insurance officials.

The alleged fraud was discovered either before the insurer paid the claim or after
Read the full article…

Bills, oaths and receptions mark California Legislature’s first day

LROSENHALL@SACBEE.COM, Updated 12/01/2014

With a room full of freshly sworn-in state legislators looking back at her, Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins, D-San Diego, offered a few hints on Monday of how this incoming legislative class will differ from those who have governed California in years past.

The man Atkins heralded as the longest-tenured “dean” of the Assembly – Assemblyman Mike Gatto, D-Los Angeles – was elected in 2010. He is 40 years old. Atkins later instructed new members on the mechanics of voting.

“Please insert and turn the key now,” Atkins explained. “If you lift up the desk and look back there,” she added, “you’ll find a key.”

Read the full article…