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Insurance companies issuing life insurance policies in New York will be required to notify the state’s Department of Financial Services (“DFS”) in advance of certain planned premium increases under a proposed regulation issued on November 17.

Insurance Policy Premium NotificationIf approved, the DFS will require a 120-day regulatory notification period and a 60-day policyholder notification period for targeted premium increases. The regulations apply to “non-guaranteed elements of an in-force life insurance or annuity policy.”

Citing low interest rates and longer life expectancy as key factors behind insurance company pricing changes, the DFS explains that it seeks to protect senior citizens from unexpected price increases at a time when their ability to pay may be limited.

Experience factors that are eligible for consideration in regard to a potential rate increase include investment income, mortality, morbidity, persistency, or expense. Policy profitability is not accepted by DFS as a reason for an insurance company to increase rates. New York has a guiding regulation on point as it relates to life insurance price increases.

Click on the link to read the full text of the proposed regulation on Life Insurance and Annuity Non-Guaranteed Elements.

Bill Hager’s Experience as a Life Insurance Expert

Mr. Hager has extensive and substantive experience relating directly to life insurance policies, including interpreting policy language and determining the insurer’s obligations under such policies. He served as a regulator for eight years in five positions:

• Commissioner of Insurance (Iowa);
• First Deputy Commissioner of Insurance;
• Member of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC);
• Administrative Law Judge f/k/a Hearing Officer at the Department of Insurance (IA); and
• Assistant Attorney General assigned on a full-time basis to the Department of Insurance.

In these positions, Mr. Hager, along with his staff, approved (or disapproved) of the language of life insurance policies used by each of the 500 life insurance companies doing business in the state. This regulatory action also included the approval of policy application forms. In addition, he regularly served as an Administrative Law Judge (then known as a “Hearing Officer”) in matters relating directly to life insurance policies.

While Commissioner, Mr. Hager also served as a member of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (“NAIC”) and participated as a member of its Executive Committee. The Executive Committee had oversight of all of the NAIC committees including the Life Insurance and Annuity Committee. In addition to Executive Committee oversight, he served as chairman of the Life Insurance and Annuities (A) Committee.

Click on the link to learn more about Mr. Hager’s experience as a life insurance policy expert.

Disclaimer

The above general discussion of inland marine insurance is not intended to address the specifics of what is and is not covered by an inland marine policy that may be in dispute.

Material for this article was taken from a collection of industry sources relating to the subject.

In all of the general statements here, see the state law of the controlling jurisdiction. Every case is different and circumstances vary widely depending on the governing state law, policy provisions, and related considerations.

This blog is provided for educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide legal advice or an opinion in regard to any topic discussed. The blog should not be used as a substitute for legal advice from a licensed attorney in your state.