What you need to know about gift cards and the law

Gift cards are the quintessential easy gift idea. Everyone wears them and avoids questions like “Will it fit?” or “Will you like this?” Gift cards and gift certificates are available in all types of stores, from the most mundane such as supermarkets and pharmacies to more specialized businesses such as spas and travel agencies. However, no matter where you buy or receive a card, it is important to protect yourself as a consumer and to be familiar with your rights around the use of gift cards. After all, these are used as currency and should be treated with the same frugality that cash would be treated.

What can I do with a gift card that I don’t want?

There are many options for putting unwanted gift cards to good use. There are websites that exist for the sole purpose of buying and selling gift cards. Gift Card Granny, for example, will buy your card for 60% -80% of its value. You can also sell your card on a website like Craigslist or eBay. Other websites like the Gift Card Exchange allow you to exchange your gift card for one that you will actually use.

If you’re feeling charitable, many nonprofits, including local schools and churches, will accept gift cards as donations. Gift cards are also great for re-gifting. There is no reason to let a gift card be forgotten!

Can my gift card expire? Can I lose my gift card balance?

The short answer: it depends on the state you live in.

The long answer: It depends on the state you live in and the degree to which your state is complying with federal law.

In 2009, the Credit Card Liability Disclosure and Accountability Act (CARD) [gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/PLAW-111publ24/pdf/PLAW-111publ24.pdf] passed into federal law. The law covers a lot of ground around protecting credit card holders, but it also created some federal standards for gift card issuers that are meant to protect consumers. These include requiring that cards, with some exceptions, expire no less than five years after issuance and that inactivity fees can only be collected after one year of inactivity and only if these fees are fully disclosed to consumers. According to the CARD Act, stores can start charging inactivity fees, that is, a charge to keep the card active when it has not been used after a certain period of time, after a year of inactivity, and no more of one charge per month. Eventually, these charges can deplete the value of the card. This is an important way that stores and major card issuers like American Express make money. However, some states have introduced additional, and sometimes contradictory, legislation surrounding the gift card law.

For example, New York law allows stores to begin charging monthly inactivity fees after just one year of inactivity. It is also legal for stores to charge a replacement fee for lost cards, and they do not require stores to return cash for small balances on the cards. Also, after five years, the cards are considered “abandoned” and the state loses the balance on the card. Other states, like New Jersey, establish abandonment after just two years of inactivity. (In the case of New Jersey, this policy has been deemed unconstitutional, so the state continues to switch between applying the overridden state rule and the federal rule.) Such provisions, which eliminate profits for card sellers that come with unused cards, have caused major issuers like American Express to pull out of grocery and convenience stores in some states.

For comparison, California provides gift card users with protection beyond the federal standard. Cards can never expire, even after five years, and inactivity fees can only be charged after two years of inactivity and only if the card balance is less than $ 5.

Here you can find a good resource to find the laws specific to your state. Because not all states or card issuers comply with federal law, consumers should be aware when reading the terms of the card. In general, it’s smart to try to use up your cards as soon as possible to avoid forgetting about them and using the full balance on the card.

What if there is only a little money left on my card?

You may be able to get your balance in cash. Under the CARD Act, most businesses must provide cash for the remaining balance on a card if the balance is less than $ 5. (In some states, this minimum value is higher). Of course, companies often don’t train their front-line staff on this law, so you may need to climb the ranks to find someone who is truly knowledgeable about the law. .

What should I know about online gift cards?

Online “gift certificate” sites offering deals like Groupon and LivingSocial fall into a somewhat gray area of ​​the law. They are generally treated as coupons rather than gift cards, which means that they can generally set their own terms when it comes to expiration dates and redemption policies. Groupon, for example, requires stores to honor the value a customer paid for an offer after the offer has expired, but only as store credit.

Virtual cards, such as the popular Amazon or iTunes cards that are often sent by email, do not usually expire. Sometimes they can only be redeemed online and not in physical stores, so read the card terms carefully. Otherwise, they are subject to the same laws as tangible cards; for example, Amazon includes required language to indicate that cash rebates are only available when “required by applicable state law,” although it does not provide information on how to claim small cash balances.

Cole Porter Song "True love"

“True Love” was written by Cole Porter and played by Bing Crosby and Grace Kelly in the 1955 film, “High Society,” which also starred Frank Sinatra and Louis Armstrong. “True Love” was the first and only gold record for Grace Kelly and it was the twenty-first gold record for Bing Crosby. The song stayed on the charts for 22 weeks, peaking at number 3. “True Love” was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Song in 1956, though it lost to Doris Day’s “Que Sera, Sera.”

Cole Porter was a very experienced songwriter when he wrote “True Love.” The 1930s and 1940s were filled with musical hits by Cole Porter. During the 1930s alone, Porter wrote music and lyrics for ten Broadway musicals for New York and two film musicals for Hollywood.

Cole Porter was born in Indiana in 1891 to wealthy parents. He received an extensive musical education, learning piano and violin at the age of six. His favorite of the two was the piano, which he practiced for two hours a day. At ten he was already writing lyrics and music for original songs, and at seventeen he published his first song.

Porter also received an impressive academic education that took him through Yale to Harvard Law School and the Harvard School of Music. While at Yale, Porter became the president of the Glee Club and a cheerleader leader, and among the 300 songs he wrote while at Yale, he wrote two soccer wrestling songs that are still heard today. Despite being the roommate of Dean Acheson, the future Secretary of State under President Truman, Porter dropped out of Harvard Law School to continue his music education.

After World War I, Porter moved to Europe, where he met and married Linda Lee Thomas, a beautiful and wealthy divorcee and descendant of the Lees of Virginia. Their relationship was loving, supportive and for life. Cole Porter was gay and had numerous male interests that Linda had agreed to allow. However, the marriage was at times unstable when Porter’s homosexual interests threatened the couple’s carefully maintained social appearances.

After their 1919 marriage in Paris, the Porters lived an extravagant lifestyle in Europe during the 1920s. Their palatial home in Paris had floor-to-ceiling mirrors and zebra-skin upholstery. Later, they moved to a famous palace in Venice where their lavish parties included fifty gondoliers, circus acrobats, and a ballet company. They also built a nightclub outside their palace with capacity for 100 guests.

Back in New York, Porter’s early contributions to Broadway musicals were poorly received. However, in the late 1920s, Porter gained recognition, and during the 1930s and 1940s he was one of the brightest stars on Broadway. He overworked tirelessly on his musical productions and spent time in both New York and Hollywood.

In 1937, a terrible riding accident crushed both Porter’s legs. As the story goes, while waiting hours for help to arrive, he composed the lyrics to a verse for his song, “At Long Last Love.” The accident left him crippled and in pain for the rest of his life. He underwent more than 30 operations on his leg until his right leg was finally amputated in 1958. After his leg was amputated, Cole Porter left music production until his death in 1964.

In 1955, Cole Porter wrote the lyrics and music for “High Society,” starring Bing Crosby, Grace Kelly, Frank Sinatra, and Louis Armstrong. The film was a musical remake of the 1940 award-winning classic “The Philadelphia Story,” which won a Best Actor Oscar for James Stewart and also starred Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn. “High Society” featured nine musical numbers, plus five additional songs written by Porter that were not included in the film.

“High Society” was one of the best MGM musicals. Grace Kelly was the shining star of the film, and the romantic exchange with Bing Crosby in “True Love” was one of the highlights of the film.

Here are the lyrics to “True Love” by Cole Porter.

Sometimes the wind blows

a new moon finally moves alone

feeling way above her

oh how lucky we are

while I give you

would you give me

true love true love

so on, it will always be

true love true love

for you and I we have a guardian angel

up high with nothing to do

but give you like you give me

forever true love

forever true love

for you and I we have a guardian angel

up high with nothing to do

but give you like you give me

forever true love

forever true love

give me more true love oh yeah

true love true love

true love true love

you have to give me your oh yes oh yes

true love true love

true love true love

for you and I we have a guardian angel

up high with nothing to do

but give you like you give me

forever true love

forever true love

love forever true love.

How do I get an RCFE certification?

As you may know, having an RCFE (Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly) certification sets you apart from the competition. In California, this certification is a legal requirement and you must be 21 years of age or older to obtain one. The RFCE certification requires taking classes, taking a test, and paying the costs of the test and certification to the state of California.

Currently, there are about 8,000 residential care facilities for the elderly with a total of almost 179,000 beds. Don’t be surprised to learn that this is not enough to handle the aging demographic in CA. You see, California is in crisis mode trying to cope with all the necessary care for the elderly. It is definitely a growing industry.

The California State Exam for RCFE Certification is 100 questions. They are not difficult, but you cannot pass it without studying seriously and knowing the important details. Before taking the test, you must have completed high school or show GED equivalency. You will need to show that you have taken a minimum of 80 hours of classroom instruction before you are eligible to take the exam. Like all of these legitimate elderly care professions, a background check is absolutely necessary.

You can ask anyone at CANHR – California Nursing Home Reform Advocates – why an RCFE certification is so important. Due to issues in the past, the RCFE certification was created and has come a long way to solve the challenges with less than adequate care for our seniors in accommodation and care facilities. Elder abuse has decreased, quality of life has improved, and older people receive better care. Their families now have more options.

If you need your RCFE Certificate, then it makes sense to find a highly rated school to receive your instruction. It is recommended that you read the syllabus carefully and understand what will be taught. It is vital that you learn from a school that has competent and experienced instructors who have worked in the field. Instructors who can explain what to expect on a daily basis, as there is much more to learn than just the 100 questions on the RCFE state exam for certification.

Is the RCFE test difficult? Well, it is not easy, and if you have studied and understood what you have learned, you should do well. Again, as long as you have chosen the right RCFE school. The state of California wants to make sure you understand the rules and the law. That you will follow those rules and will not break the law. Each rule applies for a specific reason, and many of these reasons have stories behind them, none are arbitrary.

Senior Law Attorneys: Top Five Ways They Can Help

Senior law attorneys address legal issues that arise as a result of the aging process. The law of the elderly is a fairly large umbrella and covers the areas that are most practical for the problems faced by older people. Here are the top five ways these attorneys can help seniors:

– 1. Financial abuse of the elderly. These are cases where financial predators use undue influence, manipulation, and coercion to take property and money from the elderly who have diminished mental capacity. Perpetrators can by anyone, but are generally family members, caregivers, or friends who have more access to the elderly and are less likely to be challenged by outsiders.

– 2. Abuse in nursing homes. The abuse or neglect of a nursing home patient generally results from inadequate staffing where there are too many patients and not enough nursing assistants. Sometimes this is a conscientious policy on the part of the nursing home owner that puts corporate profits before patient care. Fortunately, there are many legal remedies available to stop these wrongdoing and compensate the older victim for the injuries sustained.

– 3. Custodies. When an elder can no longer make sound health care and financial decisions, and there are no other alternatives available, the court may be asked to establish a guardianship and appoint someone who has the legal authority to make such decisions. This is a complicated process, but it provides a solution to help an elderly person who can no longer protect himself.

– 4. Estate planning. “Living trusts,” powers of attorney for health care and financial decisions, and wills are the main documents that make up a person’s estate plan. These written instructions help the elderly client both during and after life. A proper succession plan can also avoid the need to establish a guardianship if the elder is unable to make wise decisions. These documents grant all the necessary legal authority to carry out the elder’s affairs, without having to seek the participation of a court.

– 5. Medi-Cal Planning. This term applies to California residents and involves the process of getting Medi-Cal benefits to pay for the skyrocketing costs of long-term care in a skilled nursing facility. Planning involves three stages: (1) Complete analysis of the client’s financial status to develop a written strategy to obtain eligibility, reduce any part of the cost, and avoid recovery claims; (2) Execution of the written strategy; and (3) Completion of the application process. Medi-Cal law is complicated and requires an attorney experienced in the nuances of the various rules and regulations.

There are many other subfields that fall under the umbrella of elder law. Each has its own peculiar application and importance as a piece of the elder’s law puzzle. This short article has addressed just the top five ways that senior law attorneys can help their clients.

Tracing the basics of astrology

Do you know the basics of astrology? Astrology is one of those ancient ‘sciences’ that still fascinate many people and yet they don’t know much more about it than on which page of the local newspaper their horoscope will appear. So what are the basics of astrology?

In this article, we will look at some of the things you should know about astrology. First, we will see what it is and where it is believed to come from. Next, we will see what the astrological chart forms. Finally, we will look at astrology and the zodiac.

Astrology Basics: At The Beginning …

Astrology is said to date back to the Babylonians in the second millennium BC, making it one of the oldest “sciences” by far. The word “astrology” has the same Latin root (astrology) as “astronomy”, although the two are now considered to be completely different in terms of their scientific validity. However, in the early days it would have been seen as something very backwards, with astrology having a strong link to religion.

What makes up an astrological chart?

An astrological chart is a way of following the planets and includes the Sun and the Moon, but does not include the Earth, since this is the point from which we see the other planets.

The chart is divided into twelve “houses” and each house represents one aspect of life. The houses are (in Latin and with their translation): Vita (Life), Lucrum (Wealth), Fratres (Brothers), Genitor (Father), Nati (Children), Valetudo (Health), Uxor (Spouse), Mors (Death ), Iter (Travel), Regnum (Kingdom), Benefacta (Friendship) and Carcer (Prison).

Your eagle eye may have noticed that ten planets and twelve houses leave two houses empty, but fear not, the two empty houses are considered areas of your life that have been dominated, in a different life.

The first thing that is studied in an astrological chart is the sun sign, which is determined by the position in which the Sun is located. The positions of the planets are studied according to the influence they have on the sun sign. The Moon sign is the last to be studied based on how it relates to the other planets in the astrological chart.

The most common astrological chart (in the early days) was the birth chart. The birth chart was used to show what the personality of the person would be like. A birth chart can be made for someone later in life, but it may appear that they do not look like the person; This is said to be due to the fact that other events will alter a person’s personality over time.

Where does the link between astrology and horoscope come in in all of this?

To begin with, the twelve signs of the zodiac have been related to the twelve astrological houses: Aries (Vita), Taurus (Lucrum), Gemini (Fratres), Cancer (Genitor), Leo (Nati), Virgo (Valetudo), Libra (Uxor ), Scorpio (Mors), Sagittarius (Iter), Capricorn (Regnum), Aquarius (Benefacta) and Pisces (Carcer).

This mixture of astrology and horoscope (horoscopic astrology) is believed to have started in the Mediterranean in the late 2nd or early 1st century BC. The horoscope is a visual illustration of the heavens and is used to interpret the meaning of the alignment of the planets at that time.

What makes this different from other forms of astrology is the fact that it is more complex and includes other factors such as the “ascendant”, which is the degree of the eastern horizon as it rises against the backdrop of the elliptical. . However, that is taking this beyond the definition of ‘astrology basics’.

Simply put, a horoscope is more of an updated version of an astrological birth chart and allows for the current positions of the celestial bodies, while the astrological birth chart is routed in the positions at the time of birth.

There we have it, the fundamentals of astrology. Obviously we could have gone much deeper into the whole topic and started covering interpretations etc, but you have to know where you are coming from to have a good understanding of where you are going.

We saw that astrology predates the horoscope; We discovered that astrology is mainly based on the birth of someone (or even something) and is used to show how it will develop in the future; however, a birth chart made on an older person may not match the person due to other influences on their personality. Then finally we saw that a horoscope is essentially a way of adapting the natal chart, incorporating other factors, to give an updated version of your astrological chart.

That’s an overview of the slightly complicated basics of astrology.

Driving in the Rain in Florida: Don’t Panic

Rain is only part of life in South Florida. If it weren’t for the volume of precipitation we receive, this area wouldn’t be as lush and beautiful as it is, and it wouldn’t attract the thousands of transplanted residents and tourists that it does. Unfortunately, it seems to create panic in many of our drivers.

We have all seen this happen. Within a minute, the traffic appears to be buzzing well, then four thick raindrops are falling and the brake lights start to come on like Christmas decorations in Times Square. We have a LOT of rain here. Whether it’s hurricane season or just another one of the thunderstorms that seem to happen on a daily basis, the chances that you will have to drive in wet weather are great. In fact, it happens so often that some of us hardly notice these storms.

It is not a coincidence that there are so many traffic accidents during or right after a storm. Invariably one of two things happens. Many drivers have a knee-jerk reaction and begin to brake sharply, while many others fail to adjust their driving habits to current conditions. The latter of the two reactions can result in the issuance of the notorious “driving too fast for conditions” traffic ticket.

Oh, this is a misleading ticket. I say this because no matter the circumstances, if you are in an accident anywhere in the country, be it rain, snow, sun glare, potholes, whatever, you can receive a traffic quote for “driving too fast for the conditions.” Isn’t that convenient? It is equivalent to the law saying that there is no valid reason to have a traffic accident; must have been speeding. This paves the way for a police officer to write you an arbitrary traffic citation using very few rules of measurement other than their own discretion.

According to Florida GS 316.183, “No person should drive a vehicle on a highway at a speed greater than reasonable and prudent under the conditions and taking into account the actual and potential dangers that exist at that time.” There is that word again you hear me quote so often when it comes to Florida traffic laws: prudent.

Ah, be careful. The use of such language in our Florida traffic law statutes renders the interpretation of those laws quite vague and open to individual interpretation. It also makes it easier for police officers to find reasons to issue traffic tickets. In some cases, however, it is helpful to have a good traffic ticket attorney, who can often find loopholes in the validity of your traffic ticket. After all, standards like “reasonable” and “prudent” are subjective to all parties involved.

Still, you need to seriously consider how you react when it starts to rain. Try not to endanger yourself or others by reacting suddenly. Always try to warn those around you that you are going to slow down. Braking hard in a panic only increases your chances of being in a traffic accident.

For those of you approaching a sudden “Keep Driving Business” storm, consider modifying your current driving habits to better suit the South Florida climate. Think about the various factors that occur and that exist only when it rains. This includes drivers who overreact and also the reduced traction that occurs when there is water on the road. The former makes other drivers unable to anticipate the actions of someone who gets a little scared while driving in the rain, which often leads to car accidents. This latter problem is compounded not only by loss of traction, but also by oil from older vehicles being lifted from the road surface by rain. This only makes interrupting traction that much more dangerous.

When it comes to our exciting yet terrifying tropical storms we receive, there are variables that need to be taken into account. Rain volume can be very unpredictable – those four thick raindrops I mentioned at the beginning can turn into a steady rain one minute and a torrential downpour the next, which can dull your view. When you factor in the sudden appearance of dark clouds that add to reduced visibility, elderly drivers, teenagers, and inexperienced tourists who aren’t sure how to react to our unique weather patterns, and those drivers who just don’t know what do. in bad weather, our roads and highways take on the appearance of a pool table.

It can become a difficult experience for those of us who are used to the erratic Florida weather while playing dodgeball on the roads trying to stay away from drivers who are going crazy or reacting inappropriately to conditions. Fortunately for those of us who are used to such difficult driving conditions, there are those who immediately turn on their hazard flashers, which is the same as the driver yelling out the window, “I’m a lousy driver who can’t drive with. bad weather so stay AWAY from me. ” There is no problem my friend. Please stop taking two lanes and I will gladly pass you so that you are no longer a threat to my well-being.

Obviously, a lot of what I say here is ironic because I am a huge advocate of safe driving; however, when your response to fear is so great that it puts others at extreme risk, simply stop and allow others to move forward safely. There is nothing so urgent that you should risk your well-being or that of anyone else. Also, with the weather in Florida, the likelihood of this storm lasting for an extended period is quite small. Stopping for a soda or bottled water will probably give the storm plenty of time to clear the area. There is no need to point fingers because these drivers know who they are.

If you receive a traffic ticket for reckless driving, driving too fast for conditions, or aggressive driving that results in an accident, the police officer does not always have the last word. Many times, the policeman’s version of events is based on assumptions that are formed even if he is not present at the time of the accident. Keep in mind that one of the things you use to blame is what you and the other driver say, so don’t confess anything and keep your conversation to a minimum. We have years of experience in taking these traffic tickets and finding the flaws that may exist in the police version of events. Call us for a free consultation at (954) 967-9888 so we can advise you on your best course of action.

How long does the average personal injury lawsuit last?

One of the questions that injured clients always ask a personal injury attorney is “How long will my case last?” The truth is that it is a difficult question to answer because there are so many variables. These are some of the considerations.

Is it clear who caused the accident?

If there is no dispute over who to blame for the accident, and the only issue is how much the care is worth, that can speed up the process. If we have to prove that the other driver was at fault, we will likely have to go through the data collection and discovery stages of the case.

Are your injuries stabilized?

Most Ontario attorneys will be reluctant to settle your case while you are still recovering from your injuries. The uncertainty of how well you will recover creates a risk for you. If we come to an agreement based on the assumption that you will continue to improve, but not improve as well as you expected, your agreement may be too low.

Are you back to work?

Similarly, if you have not yet returned to your previous job, or are still working reduced hours, we will want to wait before settling in until we know whether or not you will be able to work, and if you are able to work, at what level. ?

Are there multiple parts to your case?

When there are more than two groups of attorneys in a case, there may be delays as we schedule the discovery and mediation examinations. Finding dates that work for groups of attorneys can sometimes add months to the length of your case.

How much is your case worth?

Although these rules are not hard and fast, generally in an Ontario personal injury case, the higher the value of the case, the longer it will take to process. Sometimes this is because the insurance company takes longer to approve the value of the case. Sometimes it is because the insurance company wants to see if you are serious, are a good witness, and / or expect you to improve over time.

Short delays

Right now in Ontario, there are delays in preparing personal injury car accident cases before trial. There were delays before the global pandemic. Those delays are longer now. So if you have a case that needs the help of a judge to resolve it before trial, or if your case needs a trial to obtain fair compensation, it may take longer to resolve.

Patience pays off

In most situations, we tell clients that they can settle quickly or fairly, but most of the time they can’t have both. If you have major injuries and losses, it will be worth the wait until the time is right.

Power of Attorney and Living Trust: Why do I need both?

A trust and a power of attorney for finances have two separate but complementary functions.

A power of attorney for finances designates one person to take care of your money, property, and bills when you are disabled. The designated person should be someone who is good with money and responsible enough to take care of your property. The designated person is called an “attorney-in-fact,” which has nothing to do with being a lawyer. A lawyer is a “lawyer”. A power of attorney for finances is sometimes called a durable power of attorney. “Durable” means that the power of attorney remains valid, even if you become incapacitated. There may also be a “power of attorney for health care,” which is a separate document and is not related to your finances. Most attorneys refer to a power of attorney for finances when they say “power of attorney.” If they mean the type of medical care, they usually say so.

A living trust can provide greater protection and easier administration than relying solely on a power of attorney. Think of a trust as a special box in which you place your assets (bank accounts, stocks, your home, rental properties, etc.). This person is NOT the “Executor.” An executor is appointed in a will, approved by a court, and only has authority after your death. A trustee generally does not need court approval and can handle things during your lifetime “and” after your death. That is why it is called a “living” trust. It is customary (although not mandatory) to appoint the same person as Trustee and as proxy, so that control of the financial affairs of both the Trust and those that do not belong to the Trust is centralized with a single person.

Even if you have a Trust, you still need a Power of Attorney because it applies, during your lifetime, to the management and control of your property that is “not” in the Trust. Certain property is not deposited in your Trust during its lifetime. For instance:

  • If you attempt to title your IRA to your trust, the IRS will treat it as an early withdrawal from the entire account. Your proxy can direct IRA investments, contributions, and withdrawals.
  • If you are receiving social security, your entitlement to benefits can only be maintained personally, not in a Trust. Once a monthly benefit is paid to you, the amount paid can be deposited into your Trust, but not before payment. Your agent can transfer social security payments to your trust and access your records with the Social Security Administration.
  • Your agent has the authority to prepare and sign your personal tax returns or talk to the IRS about your taxes. Your administrator does not.
  • Your agent, but not your Trustee, can choose Medicare benefits and enforce your rights under Medicare.
  • If you forgot to put an asset in your Trust, your agent can make that transfer.

A good estate plan contains these two important documents, but if you can only have one, choose power of attorney. Without it, your loved ones will need a short-term conservator or guardian to manage their property. This requires a very expensive and public procedure. Whether you choose both documents or one over the other, they should only be prepared with the help of an attorney. This will ensure that you receive the full benefit of your rights and options, while avoiding unintended consequences.

Secrets to Passing the California Insurance Licensing Exam

Like most states, California requires you to pass a government-administered licensing exam before you can hang your roof tile to sell insurance. Plus, you need to take up to 52 hours of pre-licensing training, which thankfully can now be done online. Licensing exams and separate training courses are required to sell property and casualty versus life and health policies. And mandatory continuing education is required every two-year renewal period, as well as additional special training classes needed to sell specific insurance products like flood insurance, long-term care insurance, and / or annuity investment policies.

If your plan is to thoroughly study state manuals, read and reread all of your licensing course materials, and take a crash course on how to take exams, I can almost guarantee that you still won’t pass the California Insurance Exam. These exams can be difficult as they are riddled with confusing and complicated questions. . . the trademark of most government or quasi-government licensing exams. So what does it take to pass? Well that’s what we cover in this article. And there is a method to madness.

First of all, beware of crazy tips and suggestions

Here are just a few of the “buzz” surrounding taking the state test. For the most part, ignore these spiel and advice:

“Taking an intensive class is all you need to pass” (Not true. See intensive courses below)

“They told me to skip all the questions on the state test. That way, these same questions are blocked and the computer won’t throw up more difficult questions.” (A crazy conspiracy theory).

“A live teacher is the only way to pass. They point out the buzzwords you need to pass. They tell you things that can’t be written.” (Bunk … Classes are monitored by the state. And, you need more than words. fashionable to pass).

“Use common sense to answer the test questions.” (It will not work).

“Through the process of elimination, you can come up with the correct answer.” (It works sometimes, but you would have to know the topic to eliminate wrong answers.)

“I got 90% on my online practice tests … I’m done.” (Many of these 90 percent still fail. There are practice tests and practice tests. See below).

“People who take online courses always fail.” (Bunk … Our online school has a very high pass rate … It’s what you do with the material that counts).

“Study the course materials … You will pass” (There is much more. It may be a variation of the material you learned that you are asked to do).

“Just look up certain buzzwords for the answer.” (The state knows all the buzzwords … You won’t beat them this way.)

California Specific

It may seem obvious to many, but make sure the courses and test prep materials you are studying are specific to California. There are many generic practice tests and courses available online that will not prepare you for the state exam or even allow you to sit for the exam. Register with an approved California provider and make sure you are taking the correct course for the license you want.

The state exam

The state requires you to complete specific pre-licensing training BEFORE you can sit for the state exam. The certificates you earn from these courses are your “ticket” to the state exam currently awarded at the San Diego, Los Angeles, and Sacramento state offices.

On the day of the exam, you must bring proper identification, including a valid driver’s license, passport, military ID, etc. The state test is done by computer. There are 75 questions for the lifetime license; 75 for accidents and health and 150 for fires and accidents.

You must score 70% or higher to pass. If you do not pass, you can retake the exam 3 consecutive times for a fee of $ 41 each. Your fourth attempt requires a 30-day waiting period. Of course, if you follow the advice in this article, you won’t have to worry about failing.

You can schedule the state exam online at any time. . . just fill out the required license application. However, you must complete the pre-licensing training courses required for the license you want BEFORE taking the exam. And you need additional time to address the remaining procedures that we recommend to prepare. Bottom line? Check out at least three weeks before scheduling an exam date.

Test shot

There are some universal rules for taking any licensing exam. Basically, you need to get familiar with the mentality of testing.

Be sure to read every word in both the questions and the answers provided! There are people who fail simply because they did not read the question correctly!

Make sure you understand the gist of the question itself … what do they mean by the question? To answer a question correctly, you need to understand the idea behind the question!

· Become familiar with the exam format. The state test is taken on the computer. See a sample of how it works on the state’s website here. . . http://www.insurance.ca.gov/sample-test/Sample_Questions-General.htm

· Don’t rush the exam. You have up to 3 hours for the accident or life / health exam. Answer all the questions you know. Check off the questions you are unsure about or skip them until later. Be on the lookout for words like except or not.

Study books, course content, and state publications

The state exam has a very broad coverage. There will be many questions about codes, ethics, and other insurance topics that you may never need or experience throughout your insurance career. However, you must know them to pass.

Then there are hundreds of pages of pre-licensing course materials (your 20, 40 and 52 hour training courses). In fact, the State dictates what must be covered in all pre-licensing courses and publishes “Educational Goals” for each one. Now, you would think that if you studied these courses and the “objectives” very hard you would be ready for the exam. . .Right? NO. Don’t spend too much time here … Sure, you need to read the materials to get your pre-license certificate (s) and there are basics you can learn from these courses, but it is highly doubtful that they will play a significant role in helping you pass the state exam.

Cram racing

There are also dozens of generic guides and crash courses that say they are specifically designed to help you pass the state exam. Save your money and time. Sure, some may provide some guidance, mostly on the test-taking techniques I mentioned above, but you still need to know the specific learning points to pass. That cannot be condensed into a small book or even an 8 hour crash course. I know, I have taken these classes and I wish I had spent the time studying.

An exam prep workbook is KEY!

Well, we are on the key to passing the state exam. Find a proven test prep workbook. We cannot emphasize how important this is to pass. It’s almost too simple, yet licensing candidates tend to discount the effectiveness of practice tests. WHOSE.

A typical test prep workbook is packed with up to 1000 questions and answers, that is, practice tests. Of course, there are practice tests and practice tests. Like I said, find a proven system and ALLOW UP TO TWO WEEKS TO FULLY UNDERSTAND AND REMEMBER THE QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS IN YOUR WORKBOOK. Simply reading the workbook once or twice IS NOT ENOUGH. Study and remember EACH QUESTION at least 10 times or more. If you get the same questions wrong, highlight them and study them further.

Don’t schedule the exam early

Do not schedule the state test until you have time to study the practice tests in the test prep workbook. Your boss and others may be pressuring you to take the state exam as soon as possible after your online training, but until you can remember the questions and answers, your chances of passing are slim.

Well that’s it. . now you know how to pass the insurance license exam. But I have a caveat: if your mental focus is just to pass the exam, you need to refocus. Many people pass their exam only to lose their license or be sued for making stupid mistakes. Knowing the answers to a lot of test questions is not enough. . . you need to know what you are doing with that license and you need to gain a sense of responsibility and ethics to win customers and stay out of trouble. While these are not the topic discussed here, know that they are as much a part of your career as obtaining your license. Therefore, please refer to the pre-licensing course materials for the basics and use them for frequent reference. Always expand your knowledge and stay up-to-date with current industry events.

I wish you the best of luck in a very rewarding field.

Advantages and disadvantages of surrogacy

Surrogacy is a process in which a surrogate mother and the intended parents mutually agree on the process in which the surrogate mother would carry and raise a child for them to full term. The process is a wonderful option for future parents to finally have their own biological child, however there are certain advantages and disadvantages that future parents should know about surrogacy. Here are some of the most common advantages and disadvantages:


1. Surrogacy can be a tedious and difficult process, especially for expectant parents. There are many processes involved with surrogacy ranging from finding trustworthy surrogates, legal processes, financial matters, and medical procedures. The best solution to fix this major drawback would be to do some research before making any final surrogacy decisions.

2. Surrogacy is an expensive process. The average cost of surrogacy would range from $ 50,000 to $ 80,000. There are different costs that prospective parents would have to cover in surrogacy. Some of these costs are medical bills, attorney’s fees, medications for the surrogate mother, and payment to the surrogate mother. The best solution for this is that the intended couples can start saving before considering surrogacy. They can avoid buying expensive items like cars and skipping expensive vacations to help them save for surrogacy.


1. Surrogacy is a wonderful option for future parents to have a biological child. This is a better option than adoption because the child you will have will be of your own flesh and blood. You no longer need to worry about the history or background of the child you will have as opposed to adoption.

2. Same-sex couples can also try this process to have their own child. One of the most important stipulations to remember about surrogacy is that at least one of the intended father’s own cells is used for the conception of the child. This is to avoid complications or legal problems that may arise once the child is born.

3. Currently there are many agencies specialized in surrogacy. In some states where surrogacy is legal and protected, there are surrogacy agencies that provide great help to expectant parents. As in Florida, where surrogacy is permitted and protected by laws and regulations, there are many reliable agencies. A Florida surrogate mother is also known for her professionalism and reliability in surrogacy.

Knowing all the different advantages and disadvantages of surrogacy can help you plan and prepare properly before making this life-changing decision. There are now several great online resources that you can refer to on the Internet to learn more about this process. There are even websites that cater to interested parents, provide helpful information on the different processes around surrogacy, and could also provide good referrals to trusted surrogate mothers. It is always best to understand the different steps and processes involved with surrogacy because there are many options available about surrogacy and finding the right option would mean less hassle and stress for you and your partner.