(a) As used in this section, “exercise the right to cancel” means the act of formally electing to use the right of the insured to cancel any insurance policy in accordance with and subject to the provisions of that policy when the right to use that right of the insured has been transferred or assigned by the insured in writing executed by, or on behalf of, the insured to a lender who has advanced to the insurer the premium for the policy. The transfer or assignment may be by power of attorney or other document. The transfer or assignment may, but need not, be accompanied by an assignment of any unearned premium due the insured on cancellation.
(b) No lender shall exercise the right to cancel a financed insurance policy because of the default of the insured under a premium payment loan agreement except in accordance with this section.
(c) Written notice of the exercise of the right to cancel shall be mailed by the lender to the insurer and to the insured at the address shown on the premium payment loan agreement or his or her last known address, specifying a date five days or more after the date of mailing of such notice as the effective date of cancellation. Any insurer may, in writing delivered to the lender, waive, generally or specifically, the right to receive such notice or notices. A copy of such notice may be mailed to the producer of record if known to the lender, but failure to do so shall not affect any rights granted by this section. This subdivision shall not apply to an industrial loan company.
(d) An industrial loan company shall, in giving the insured 10 days’ notice of its intent to cancel pursuant to Section 18608 of the Financial Code, furnish a copy of such notice to the insurance agent or insurance broker indicated on the premium finance agreement. After expiration of the 10-day period, the industrial loan company may thereafter, in the name of the insured, cancel the insurance contract or contracts by mailing to the insurer a written notice of cancellation, and the insurance contract shall be canceled as if the notice of cancellation had been submitted by the insured person, but without requiring the return of the insurance contract or contracts. The industrial loan company shall also mail a notice of cancellation, setting forth the effective date of cancellation of the finance insurance contract, to the insured at his or her last known address and to the insurance agent or insurance broker indicated on the premium finance agreement. For the purposes of this subdivision, the words “premium finance agreement” shall have the same meaning as that specified in Section 18564 of the Financial Code.
(e) A written exercise of that right containing a confirmation of the effective date of cancellation shall be mailed by the lender to the insurer within five days following that effective date of cancellation specified in the notice described in subdivision (c) unless the insured has cured any and all defaults. Cancellation shall be effective on the financed insurance policy without requiring the return of the insurance policy or insurance policies, except as provided in subdivisions (f) and (g), on the confirmation date specified in the written exercise of that right. This subdivision shall not apply to an industrial loan company.
(f) All statutory, regulatory, and contractual restrictions providing that the financed insurance policy may not be canceled unless notice is given to a governmental agency, mortgagee, or other third party shall apply where cancellation is effected under this section. The insurer shall give the prescribed notice on behalf of itself or the insured to any governmental agency, mortgagee, or other third party on or before the fifth business day after the day it receives the written exercise of cancellation right containing confirmation of the cancellation date from the lender, as provided in subdivision (e), or a written notice of cancellation from an industrial loan company, pursuant to subdivision (d), and shall, for the purpose of the notice, determine the effective date of cancellation as to those persons mentioned in this subdivision only, taking into consideration the number of days’ notice required to complete the cancellation.
(g) Whenever such a financed insurance policy is canceled by any party for any reason:
(1) The insurer shall, in accordance with the written agreements of which it has notice, return to the lender such unearned premiums as are due to the lender. The amount of the return premiums shall be based upon the confirmed date of cancellation specified in subdivision (e), or upon the written notice of cancellation specified in subdivision (d) in the case of an industrial loan company, lessened by the amount, if any, to compensate equitably the insurer for carrying the risk of loss as to any governmental agency, mortgagee, or other parties specified in subdivision (f) from that date to the effective date of cancellation as to those parties.
(2) When a financed insurance policy is canceled, or the insured discontinues payments to a lender, the insurer shall calculate the return premium on a pro rata basis. This paragraph shall not apply to any policy issued under an assigned risk plan or to any policy with respect to which the insurer has made a loan to the insured for the purposes of payment of premiums for the policy.
(h) The commissioner may amend the rules and regulations of any assigned risk plan, fair plan, or similar plan to provide for the equitable assignment of insurance risks among insurers now in existence or hereafter established, in such manner as may be necessary to carry out the purposes of this section.
(i) A lender which sends a written exercise of cancellation right or a written notice of cancellation to an insurer, as provided in subdivision (c), or subdivision (d) in the case of an industrial loan company, thereby represents that he or she has a valid right to do so and to receive the unearned premium. If the lender thereby accomplishes the cancellation and receives an unearned premium, such representation shall be conclusive as between the insurer and the lender. An insurer relying upon the written exercise of that right containing a confirmation of cancellation date and giving, when applicable, notice as required by subdivision (e), shall be relieved from complying with any other duty or form of cancellation required by this code.
(j) This section shall not apply where the insurer exercises its own right to cancel the policy for nonpayment of premium, direct or indirect, or otherwise. Such a cancellation shall be subject to all applicable provisions of the policy, this code, except this section, and any rights of the lender of which the insurer has written notice.
(k)Whenever a lender or industrial loan company cancels a policy as described in this section and then requests the insurer to reinstate the policy, the insurer shall provide written notice by mail to the insured, agent/broker, and lender or industrial loan company within 15 days that the reinstatement has been accepted or rejected.
(l) This section shall apply only to contracts entered into between an insured and a lender on or after January 1, 1974.