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Insurance Compliance Tip!

The Bureau of Insurance is stepping up compliance of certain AGENCY issues!   This happened in Maine but could happen in any state due to the NAIC definitions of Insurance Fraud!

Agents should be aware that the Bureau of Insurance is conducting “compliance audits” on agent’s books of business.

They are checking cars on in force policies against valid registrations to determine that the vehicle is titled to the policyholder and registered to that owner. They compare the State Registry records to see if cars are being insured that are not owned, but are being used to artificially lower premiums through a multi-car discount that should not be on the policy. They are being increasingly aggressive about enforcement of agency compliance issues.

While you should not become alarmed, this would be a good time to review the accuracy of all your policies and procedures relative to compliance with State Insurance Law. Your agency policies should state that no agent is allowed to distort any underwriting or rating information to an insurer. Penalties can include fines, reprimand, censure and possible loss of license as well as other elective enforcement options..

Some of the compliance issues that they are checking include:

Receipts, as used in rating of a policy (Commercial Lines)- Artificial suppression or inflation of receipts to lower or inflate premiums:

A “ghost vehicle” left on a policy to retain a multi car discount:

Drivers: Failure to disclose and rate for drivers:

Rating: Failure to rate vehicles properly for the exposure:

And… many, many other similar situations.

Agents need to have written policies and procedures to assure compliance and those policies must be enforced by the agency.

Just a word to the wise… Howard