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Article XIII Section 28 California Constitution – Taxation

Article XIII Section 28 California Constitution

Below is the content of Article XIII Section 28 of the California Constitution 

(a) “Insurer,” as used in this section, includes insurance companies or associations and reciprocal or interinsurance exchanges together with their corporate or other attorneys in fact considered as a single unit, and the State Compensation Insurance Fund. As used in this paragraph, “companies” includes persons, partnerships, joint stock associations, companies and corporations.

(b) An annual tax is hereby imposed on each insurer doing business in this State on the base, at the rates, and subject to the deductions from the tax hereinafter specified.

(c) In the case of an insurer not transacting title insurance in this State, the “basis of the annual tax” is, in respect to each year, the amount of gross premiums, less return premiums, received in such year by such insurer upon its business done in this State, other than premiums received for reinsurance and for ocean marine insurance.

In the case of an insurer transacting title insurance in this State, the “basis of the annual tax” is, in respect to each year, all income upon business done in this State, except:

(1) Interest and dividends.

(2) Rents from real property.

(3) Profits from the sale or other disposition of investments.

(4) Income from investments.

“Investments” as used in this subdivision includes property acquired by such insurer in the settlement or adjustment of claims against it but excludes investments in title plants and title records. Income derived directly or indirectly from the use of title plants and title records is included in the basis of the annual tax.

In the case of an insurer transacting title insurance in this State which has a trust department and does a trust business under the banking laws of this State, there shall be excluded from the basis of the annual tax imposed by this section, the income of, and from the assets of, such trust department and such trust business, if such income is taxed by this State or included in the measure of any tax imposed by this State.

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(d) The rate of the tax to be applied to the basis of the annual tax in respect to each year is 2.35 percent.

(f) The tax imposed on insurers by this section is in lieu of all other taxes and licenses, state, county, and municipal, upon such insurers and their property, except:

(1) Taxes upon their real estate.

(2) That an insurer transacting title insurance in this State which has a trust department or does a trust business under the banking laws of this State is subject to taxation with respect to such trust department or trust business to the same extent and in the same manner as trust companies and the trust departments of banks doing business in this State.

(3) When by or pursuant to the laws of any other state or foreign country any taxes, licenses and other fees, in the aggregate, and any fines, penalties, deposit requirements or other material obligations, prohibitions or restrictions are or would be imposed upon California insurers, or upon the agents or representatives of such insurers, which are in excess of such taxes, licenses and other fees, in the aggregate, or which are in excess of the fines, penalties, deposit requirements or other obligations, prohibitions, or restrictions directly imposed upon similar insurers, or upon the agents or representatives of such insurers, of such other state or country under the statutes of this State; so long as such laws of such other state or country continue in force or are so applied, the same taxes, licenses and other fees, in the aggregate, or fines, penalties or deposit requirements or other material obligations, prohibitions, or restrictions, of whatever kind shall be imposed upon the insurers, or upon the agents or representatives of such insurers, of such other state or country doing business or seeking to do business in California. Any tax, license or other fee or other obligation imposed by any city, county, or other political subdivision or agency of such other state or country on California insurers or their agents or representatives shall be deemed to be imposed by such state or country within the meaning of this paragraph (3) of subdivision (f).

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The provisions of this paragraph (3) of subdivision (f) shall not apply as to personal income taxes, nor as to ad valorem taxes on real or personal property nor as to special purpose obligations or assessments heretofore imposed by another state or foreign country in connection with particular kinds of insurance, other than property insurance; except that deductions, from premium taxes or other taxes otherwise payable, allowed on account of real estate or personal property taxes paid shall be taken into consideration in determining the propriety and extent of retaliatory action under this paragraph (3) of subdivision (f).

For the purposes of this paragraph (3) of subdivision (f) the domicile of an alien insurer, other than insurers formed under the laws of Canada, shall be that state in which is located its principal place of business in the United States.

In the case of an insurer formed under the laws of Canada or a province thereof, its domicile shall be deemed to be that province in which its head office is situated.

The provisions of this paragraph (3) of subdivision (f) shall also be applicable to reciprocals or interinsurance exchanges and fraternal benefit societies.

(4) The tax on ocean marine insurance.

(5) Motor vehicle and other vehicle registration license fees and any other tax or license fee imposed by the State upon vehicles, motor vehicles or the operation thereof.

(6) That each corporate or other attorney in fact of a reciprocal or interinsurance exchange shall be subject to all taxes imposed upon corporations or others doing business in the State, other than taxes on income derived from its principal business as attorney in fact.

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A corporate or other attorney in fact of each exchange shall annually compute the amount of tax that would be payable by it under prevailing law except for the provisions of this section, and any management fee due from each exchange to its corporate or other attorney in fact shall be reduced pro tanto by a sum equivalent to the amount so computed.

(g) Every insurer transacting the business of ocean marine insurance in this State shall annually pay to the State a tax measured by that proportion of the underwriting profit of such insurer from such insurance written in the United States, which the gross premiums of the insurer from such insurance written in this State bear to the gross premiums of the insurer from such insurance written within the United States, at the rate of 5 per centum, which tax shall be in lieu of all other taxes and licenses, state, county and municipal, upon such insurer, except taxes upon real estate, and such other taxes as may be assessed or levied against such insurer on account of any other class of insurance written by it. The Legislature shall define the terms “ocean marine insurance” and “underwriting profit,” and shall provide for the assessment, levy, collection and enforcement of the ocean marine tax.

(h) The taxes provided for by this section shall be assessed by the State Board of Equalization.

(i) The Legislature, a majority of all the members elected to each of the two houses voting in favor thereof, may by law change the rate or rates of taxes herein imposed upon insurers.

(j) This section is not intended to and does not change the law as it has previously existed with respect to the meaning of the words “gross premiums, less return premiums, received” as used in this article.


See also: Article XIII Section 27 California Constitution

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