Claims Administration

Claims Management

CIRA’s philosophy is to promptly investigate and equitably conclude all claims involving members. It is also our practice to defend members vigorously against non-meritorious claims. To implement this philosophy, we cultivate a close working relationship with members, their third-party claims administrators, and retained defense counsel. Such a relationship requires coordination and communication between all parties.

Ongoing collaboration ensures the protection of individual and collective interests of the member and pool. Our involvement in all phases of handling, investigation, litigation and settlement of claims minimizes adverse financial impact. Timely reporting and early intervention maximizes successful resolution and minimizes costs and exposure.

Litigation Management

Cases are assigned to law firms that are most qualified to handle the defense of public entity tort liability while producing the best outcomes and ensuring cost-efficient representation without compromising the quality of that representation. Firms were selected based on demonstrated success in their area(s) of specialty. The maximum rate for defense counsel is $225, unless a higher rate is pre-approved by CIRA. Members using a firm with a higher rate will be responsible for the additional cost which will not reduce the self-insured retention. Members are encouraged to select from among the Panel firms when coverage is in question because CIRA’s coverage position can change when a suit is amended.

Liability Defense Panel

Case Assignment

When served with a lawsuit (summons and complaint) immediately forward a full copy to both the Claim Adjuster and CIRA. This ensures a timely response filed with the appropriate court. Prompt action is imperative. Failure to do so may result in a default judgment. We collaborate with the member to assign defense counsel. To ensure the best possible outcome, assignment is made to the most qualified firm based on the circumstances of each case.

Members with a self-insured retention of $250k or higher may select Panel counsel except for lawsuits related to police actions. Contracted city attorneys may not be used as defense counsel unless the member has a SIR of $350k or higher. PARSAC must be included on all correspondence.


Litigation Guidelines

We developed basic Litigation Guidelines to ensure members consistently receive cost efficient, quality representation for the best outcome possible.

Claims Administration

CIRA’s claims are handled by our Third-Party Administrator, George Hills Company. For questions regarding a claim, or to report a new claim or lawsuit, contact:

CIRA/George Hills Company
3043 Gold Canal Drive, Suite 200
Rancho Cordova, CA 95670
Phone: 916-859-4800



Liability Claim Manual :  This manual was prepared for CIRA members as a guide for handling claims and lawsuits presented to your entity. It sets forth in general terms: the requirements imposed on claimants; how claims should be processed; requirements of legal complaints; and glossary of common terms.

Claims Administrator Guidelines – The requirements for underlying Third Party Claims Administrators ensure consistent handling, reflect current practices, comply with excess requirements, and include industry best practices.

Notice of Serious Incident

Liability claim for damages to person or property.

Notice of rejection

Notice of full payment of claim

Notice of partial payment of claim

Sample resolution

General release of all claims

Medicare sample release language

Release of all property claims

Notice of insufficiency of claim and return without action

Notice of late claim

Notice of board action on application for relief from the claim’s statute

Denial of late claim

Rejection – Over one year

Sample request for Medicare information

Proof of Service by Mail C.C.P. Sections 1013(A), 1013A AND 2015.5