WSR 13-02-089

PROPOSED RULES

OFFICE OF

INSURANCE COMMISSIONER

[ Insurance Commissioner Matter No. R 2012-26 -- Filed January 2, 2013, 7:42 a.m. ]

Original Notice.

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 12-22-067.

Title of Rule and Other Identifying Information: Travel agent licensing.

Hearing Location(s): Insurance Commissioner's Office, TR 120, 5000 Capitol Boulevard, Tumwater, WA 98504-0255, on February 7, 2013, at 10:00 a.m.

Date of Intended Adoption: February 10, 2013.

Submit Written Comments to: Kacy Scott, P.O. Box 40258, Olympia, WA 98504-0258, fax (360) 586-3109, e-mail rulescoordinator@oic.wa.gov, by February 6, 2013.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Lorrie [Lorie] Villaflores by February 6, 2013, TTY (360) 586-0241 or (360) 725-7087.

Purpose of the Proposal and Its Anticipated Effects, Including Any Changes in Existing Rules: The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) recently revised the state licensing handbook. This proposed amendment will bring the agency rules into alignment with the guidelines for issuing travel licenses.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: The proposed amendment would bring the agency in line with the uniform limited line travel licensing guidelines adopted by the NAIC.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 48.17.005.

Statute Being Implemented: RCW 48.17.170.

Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.

Name of Proponent: Mike Kreidler, insurance commissioner, governmental.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting: Kacy Scott, P.O. Box 40258, Olympia, WA 98504-0258, (360) 725-7041; Implementation: John Hamje, P.O. Box 40255, Olympia, WA 98504-0255, (360) 725-7262; Enforcement: Carol Sureau, P.O. Box 40255, Olympia, WA 98504-0255, (360) 725-7050.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. Any additional costs due to this change in licensing requirements for travel insurance easily fall within the definition of "minor costs" found in RCW 19.85.020.

A cost-benefit analysis is not required under RCW 34.05.328. This proposed rule does not add any new requirements for those selling travel insurance; instead it provides an option to not license all employees selling travel insurance as long as the agency is licensed and there is one primary agent licensed.

January 2, 2013

Mike Kreidler

Insurance Commissioner

OTS-5206.1


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending Matter No. R 2012-23, filed 10/29/12, effective 11/29/12)

WAC 284-17-001   Definitions.   For purposes of this chapter, unless the context requires otherwise:

(1) "Affiliation" is a type of appointment whereby a business entity authorizes an individual insurance producer or surplus line broker to represent it when conducting insurance business.

(2) "Business entity" has the meaning set forth in RCW 48.17.010(2) and includes a sole proprietorship having associated licensees authorized to act on its behalf in the business or trade name of the sole proprietorship.

(3) "Days" means calendar days including Saturday and Sunday and holidays, unless otherwise specified.

(4) "Electronic submission" or "submitted electronically" means submission of a licensing process by an applicant, licensee, insurer, or education provider by means of the commissioner's web site or a third-party licensing provider or other state agency.

(5) "File" means a record in any retrievable format, and unless otherwise specified, includes paper and electronic formats.

(6) "Home state" has the meaning set forth in RCW 48.17.010(4).

(7) "Insurer" has the meaning set forth in RCW 48.17.010(7).

(8) "Licensee" means a person licensed by the commissioner under Title 48 RCW to sell, solicit or negotiate insurance and includes adjusters and surplus line brokers.

(9) "Line of authority" means a license issued in one or more lines of insurance listed in RCW 48.17.170.

(10) "NAIC" means the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

(11) "Third-party licensing provider" is designated on the commissioner's web site at: www.insurance.wa.gov.

(12) "Reinstatement" means the reissuance by the commissioner of a license that was not renewed more than sixty days but fewer than twelve months after its expiration date.

(13) "Resident" means a person who has elected to make Washington his or her home state, or, in the case of a business entity, has a place of business in this state.

(14) "Sending written notice" or "sending a copy of the written notice" means transmitting the required information in writing and, where required, on forms designated by the commissioner for that purpose, via first class mail, commercial parcel delivery company, telefacsimile, or electronic transmission, unless a specific method of transmission is specified.

(15) "Surety" means that limited line of authority of insurance or bond that covers obligations to pay the debts of, or answer for the default of another, including faithlessness in a position of public or private trust.

(16) "Travel insurance" means ((that limited line of authority of insurance coverage for trip cancellation, trip interruption, baggage, life, sickness and accident, disability, and personal effects when limited to a specific trip and sold in connection with transportation provided by a common carrier.

(17))) insurance coverage for personal risks incident to planned travel including, but not limited to:

(a) Interruption or cancellation of trip or event;

(b) Loss of baggage or personal effects;

(c) Damages to accommodations or rental vehicles; or

(d) Sickness, accident, disability, or death occurring during limited duration travel.

Travel insurance does not include major medical plans, which provide comprehensive medical protection for travelers with trips lasting six months or longer, including those working overseas as an expatriate or military personnel being deployed.

(17) "Travel insurance producer" means a licensed limited lines producer of travel insurance.

(18) "Travel retailer" means a business entity that offers and disseminates travel insurance on behalf of and under the direction and supervision of a licensed travel insurance producer.

(19) "Written" or "in writing" means any retrievable method of recording an agreement or document, and, unless otherwise specified, includes paper and electronic formats.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 48.02.060 and 48.17.005. 12-22-020 (Matter No. R 2012-23), 284-17-001, filed 10/29/12, effective 11/29/12. Statutory Authority: RCW 48.02.060 (3)(a) and 48.17.005. 11-19-040 (Matter No. R 2011-12), 284-17-001, filed 9/13/11, effective 10/14/11. Statutory Authority: RCW 48.15.015 and 48.17.005. 11-04-067 (Matter No. R 2010-07), 284-17-001, filed 1/28/11, effective 2/28/11. Statutory Authority: RCW 48.02.060, 48.17.005. 09-02-073 (Matter No. R 2008-06), 284-17-001, filed 1/6/09, effective 7/1/09.]

OTS-5207.2


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending Matter No. R 2011-12, filed 9/13/11, effective 10/14/11)

WAC 284-17-011   Limited line of travel insurance.   (1) Travel insurance is a limited line of authority ((and is defined in WAC 284-17-001(16).

(1) Insurers must ensure that their licensed and appointed insurance producers who transact the limited line of travel insurance are qualified by education or experience to offer their travel insurance products)). A person must not sell, solicit, or negotiate travel insurance in this state unless that person is licensed as an insurance producer with the travel limited line of authority.

(2) A business entity acting as a travel insurance producer is required to:

(a) Be licensed as a producer with the travel limited line of authority; and

(b) Designate an individual licensed as a producer with the travel limited line of authority to act as a designated licensed responsible person (DLRP) who is responsible for the business entity's compliance with the laws of this state.

(((2))) (3) The requirements of this chapter for passing an insurance producer examination and for prelicensing and continuing insurance education do not apply to insurance producers that transact only the limited line of travel insurance.

(4) A travel retailer may offer and disseminate travel insurance on behalf of and under a travel insurance producer business entity license only if the travel insurance producer holds a business entity license, and:

(a) Clearly identifies the licensed business entity as the licensed producer on marketing materials and fulfillment packages distributed by travel retailers to customers, identification shall include the entity's name and contact information;

(b) Keeps a register of each travel retailer that offers travel insurance on the licensed business entity's behalf. The register must include the name and contact information of the travel retailer and an officer or person who directs or controls the travel retailer's operations, and the travel retailer's federal Employer Identification Number. The licensed business entity must also certify that the travel retailer registered complies with United States Code, Title 18, section 1033. The licensed business entity must submit the register within thirty days upon request by the commissioner;

(c) Complies with the fingerprinting requirements applicable to insurance producers in the resident state of the business entity;

(d) Has paid all applicable insurance producer licensing fees as set forth in Washington state law; and

(e) Requires each employee whose duties include offering and disseminating travel insurance to receive a program of instruction or training, which is subject to review by the commissioner.

(5) An employee of a travel retailer may sell or offer travel insurance without being individually licensed as an insurance producer if the travel retailer is licensed and acting in compliance with this chapter, and the employees are under the supervision of a licensed travel producer.

(6) A travel retailer whose activities, and those of its employees, are limited to offering and disseminating travel insurance on behalf of and under the direction of a licensed business entity meeting the conditions stated in this section, is authorized to do so, upon registration by the licensed business entity.

(7) As the insurer designee, the travel insurance producer is responsible for the acts and supervision of the travel retailer.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 48.02.060 (3)(a) and 48.17.005. 11-19-040 (Matter No. R 2011-12), 284-17-011, filed 9/13/11, effective 10/14/11. Statutory Authority: RCW 48.02.060, 48.17.005. 09-02-073 (Matter No. R 2008-06), 284-17-011, filed 1/6/09, effective 7/1/09.]