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California insurance crisis: Liberty Mutual ends policies for businesses

Pedestrians walk past boarded up business along Van Ness in San Francisco on Tuesday, March 29, 2022. | Source: Nick Otto for The Standard

Liberty Mutual Insurance said it will stop offering business owner policies in California this fall. Current policies will not be renewed from December.

In a statement Thursday morning to The Standard, a spokesman explained the company's decision to no longer offer a business-owner policy starting on Oct. 1, 2023.

"We regularly assess our position in every market to ensure we are delivering competitive, innovative products that meet our customer needs while achieving our business goals," spokesman Gregory Kessler said. "Sometimes that results in a determination that a product is no longer effectively delivering on those aspirations, and we must retire that line."

Kessler did not provide an exact that current plans would end in December. 

READ MORE: California Homeowners’ ‘Insurer of Last Resort’ Quickly Becoming Only Viable Option

"We remain committed to the commercial insurance market in California and continue to offer other insurance products for small businesses throughout the state," Kessler said.

The Boston-based company, which calls itself "the fifth largest global property and casualty insurer based on 2022 gross written premium," plans a second-quarter earnings conference call Aug. 10.

A state property and casualty market share report for 2022 listed Liberty Mutual Group as fifth for written premiums in the state, behind State Farm, Farmers Insurance, Berkshire Hathaway and Allstate.

Companies like State Farm, Allstate and others have halted new home-coverage policies in California, forcing homeowners to seek help or use the so-called “insurer of last resort.”

Anyone with questions about insurance policies may contact the state Department of Insurance at 800-927-4357 or visit their site.

This is a developing story.