CSE Insurance

Editor's Rating

CSE's mission is to provide affordable, reliable insurance to public service employees — but we found that rates are high and the customer experience is mediocre. You will likely find a better deal and better service from another insurer.

Good for
  • Public employees, who can snag more benefits and discounts
Bad for
  • Affordable rates
  • Users who like to manage their policy via mobile app
  • Getting a quote online

CSE Insurance review: Our thoughts

CSE Insurance brands itself as an affordable company for public servants, but our analysis found the company's rates aren't especially competitive. Its discounts are generous, but they can't completely offset annual premiums that are almost double competitors' rates.

Additionally, CSE's digital infrastructure is lacking compared to competitors. Because the company only sells policies through independent insurance agents, you'll need to make a call to get a quote or purchase a policy. Similarly, the company does not have a mobile app, so consumers who like to manage their policy on their phone should consider a different company.

Bottom line: There's a reason CSE has such a small market share: Its rates are high and its customer service reputation is mixed. We recommend getting a quote from another company.

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Rates from CSE vs. competitors

Shoppers looking for cheap rates should consider another company. Rates from CSE were 85% more expensive than rates from Wawanesa, the cheapest insurer in this study.

Both major national insurers and smaller regional insurers had better rates than CSE. Geico, for instance, charged a driver with a clean record 43% less per year than CSE, while Wawanesa charged a driver with one at-fault accident 37% less per year.

A chart of the cost of CSE Insurance vs. competitors

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Insurer
Single driver, no accidents
Single driver, accident
Wawanesa$902$1,380
Geico$956$1,223
State Farm$1,017$1,649
CSE$1,672$2,182

Source: California Department of Insurance

Coverages offered by CSE

In addition to the standard coverages all auto insurers offer, CES offers a few add-on coverages. These include:

  • Full glass coverage: Eliminates your deductible for glass repairs.
  • Loan/lease gap coverage: Pays the remainder of your car loan if your car's value plummets after a covered accident.
  • Equivalent replacement cost: Replaces your car with a new one if it is totaled.
  • Medical parts and accessibility: Provides extra coverage for any customized equipment that was added to your car.
  • Original equipment manufacturer (OEM): Guarantees that repairs to your car are done only with parts from the original manufacturer.
  • Roadside assistance: Assists you when you need help on the road, such as when you're out of gas, you're locked out or your vehicle breaks down.
  • Rental reimbursement: Pays for the cost of a rental car while the car you own is in the shop for repairs.

The basic coverages that CSE offers include:

  • Comprehensive coverage
  • Collision coverage
  • Bodily injury and property damage liability
  • Medical payments

Auto insurance discounts from CSE

CSE specializes in providing insurance policies to civil servants, offering benefits, discounts and lower premiums to individuals who work in certain public roles.

If you work 30 or more hours per week in one of the following jobs, you're eligible for additional benefits not accessible to the public at large:

  • Educators
  • Law enforcement officers
  • Military personnel
  • Firefighters
  • Government employees

CSE has only a small number of discounts, but the discounts it offers are very generous. We've outlined the car insurance discounts CSE offers below:

Discount
How to get it
Amount
Multivehicle discountInsure two or more cars with CSEUp to 24%
Multipolicy discountInsure your home, apartment or condo with CSE in addition to your carUp to 22%
Good driving discountDrive safely for three or more yearsUp to 25%
Superior good driver discountDrive safely for five yearsUp to 20% (CA only)
Loyalty discountMaintain a policy with CSE over timeUp to 3% (CA only)
Good student discountMaintain good grades, up until age 25Up to 14%

Discounts can vary from state to state, with some discounts only available in California.

CSE customer service reviews

If excellent customer service is your top priority, consider another company besides CSE for your auto insurance. Only four complaints were made against the company's largest California subsidiary, but an analysis from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) shows that this is more than double the number of complaints usually received by an insurer of CSE's size.

Rating system
Maximum score
CSE score
NAIC complaint indexAverage is 1.00 (lower is better)2.38
AM Best financial strength ratingA++ (superior)A- (excellent)

That said, policyholders can be confident that CSE will be able to pay out its claims. Both of CSE's subsidiaries — Civil Service Employees Insurance Co. and CSE Safeguard — received an A- on the AM Best financial strength rating system. This rating means that the CSE Insurance Group has an "excellent" ability to meet its financial obligations.

About CSE

CSE Insurance stands for Civil Service Employees Insurance. Established in 1949, the company's core mission is to provide insurance to public employees, but it also sells policies to the general public. The company is a subsidiary of Covéa, a multinational company based in France.

The CSE Insurance Group does business out of two subsidiaries: Civil Service Employees Insurance Co. and CSE Safeguard. Headquarters for both CSE subsidiaries are located at 2121 North California Boulevard, Suite 900, Walnut Creek, CA 94596.

CSE is licensed to write policies in the following states:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • District of Columbia
  • Idaho
  • Nevada
  • Oregon
  • Utah
  • Virginia
  • Washington

For insurance claims with CSE, you can either log in and file via the online portal at myCSEpolicy.com or you can call the claims department phone number at 888-236-5584. To make a payment to CSE Insurance, use the portal or send your check to the following address:

CSE Insurance Group

P.O. Box 60289

Los Angeles, CA 90060

CSE offers the following personal lines of insurance:

  • Automotive
  • Home
  • Landlord
  • Renters
  • Condo
  • Umbrella
  • Boat

Methodology

ValuePenguin used rate data from the California Department of Insurance for this analysis. Our sample drivers both put 7,600 to 10,000 miles per year on a Toyota Camry. They are both single, have been licensed for 14 to 25 years and live in Burbank, California. Rates were for a basic liability policy.

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.