insurance options

New Coverage Options Under California FAIR Plan Begin February 1

Brian GermanAgri-Business, Industry

New commercial coverage for farmers and ranchers will become available through the California FAIR Plan. Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara announced that the new coverage will start February 1. The increase in coverage is made possible through Senate Bill 11, authored by Senator Susan Rubio and signed into law on July 23, 2021.

“Agriculture is critical to our continued economic recovery. That’s why when leaders in this sector first shared their challenges in getting insurance coverage, we listened,” Commissioner Lara said in a press release. “The Department of Insurance is changing how the FAIR Plan operates as part of a broader solution to help protect these businesses, especially those vulnerable to climate-intensified wildfires.”

The new coverage will be available for farm owners, wineries, and other outdoor businesses previously ineligible for coverage. In its approval letter, the California Department of Insurance identified other areas to improve commercial coverage. The Department will continue reviewing the commercial property insurance program in the coming months to potentially provide further improvement.


“This approval means California’s FAIR Plan can do its job and add much-needed protection for those farmers and ranchers that have found their insurance policies canceled or non-renewed. Given the current wildfire challenges facing California, our agricultural community is fearful of what may happen this year without this additional coverage,” said California Farm Bureau Federation President Jamie Johansson. “We thank Commissioner Lara for supporting and expediting this new coverage and Senator Rubio for championing this legislation to protect California’s farmers and ranchers. We know that we have a leader in Commissioner Lara to get things done and look forward to continuing to partner with him on long-term coverage solutions for California’s agricultural community.”

Commissioner Lara has been vocal in prioritizing better coverage options to be offered through the program. Amendments to the Plan of Operations for the FAIR Plan were made in November 2021, doubling coverage limits for protection programs. Coverage limits had previously remained largely unchanged for more than 20 years.