WSR 04-01-176

PERMANENT RULES

OFFICE OF THE

INSURANCE COMMISSIONER

[ Insurance Commissioner Matter No. R 2003-07 -- Filed December 23, 2003, 1:59 p.m. ]


Date Adopted: December 23, 2003.

Purpose: The rule making corrects an inadvertent error in a provision in recently adopted rules regarding automobile claims, repairs, and total loss settlements. The timeline for the insured's action is shortened from thirty-five days to three days. The insured will receive the same protections and have the same duties, only the time period is changed. The change will make the regulation easier and more cost-effective to administer.

Citation of Existing Rules Affected by this Order: Amending WAC 284-30-3912.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 48.02.060 and 48.30.010.

Adopted under notice filed as WSR 03-20-123 on October 1, 2003.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted at Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's Own Initiative: New 0, Amended 1, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted Using Negotiated Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Effective Date of Rule: Thirty-one days after filing.

December 23, 2003

Mike Kreidler

Insurance Commissioner

OTS-6707.1


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending Matter No. R 2002-06, filed 6/30/03, effective 10/1/03)

WAC 284-30-3912   What if I, as an insured, accept the settlement based on my insurer's valuation and cannot find a comparable vehicle within a reasonable distance of my vehicle's principally garaged area?   (1) When you accept the settlement, your insurer must provide you with written notice regarding reopening of your claim file.

(2) If you notify your insurer within thirty-five days of receipt of the settlement that you cannot purchase a comparable vehicle for the settlement amount and you located, but did not purchase a comparable vehicle that costs more than the settlement amount, your insurer must reopen your claim file and either:

(a) Locate a comparable vehicle that is currently available for the settlement amount;

(b) Pay you the difference between the settlement amount and the cost of the comparable vehicle or purchase the comparable vehicle for you; or

(c) If not previously utilized, conclude the loss settlement in the manner provided in the appraisal section of your insurance policy in force at the time of the loss.

(3) Your insurer is not required to reopen your claim file if:

(a) At the time of settlement, you were provided written notification of the availability and location of a specific and comparable vehicle that could have been purchased for the settlement amount; and

(b) You did not purchase the vehicle within ((thirty-five)) three days of the receipt of the settlement.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 48.02.060, 48.30.010. 03-14-092 (Matter No. R 2002-06), 284-30-3912, filed 6/30/03, effective 10/1/03.]