Bill Text - HB479 (2023)

Relative to administrative hearings, automation of electronic notices to insurance licensees, and insurance producer activities.

Revision: Jan. 11, 2023, 10:33 a.m.










AN ACT relative to administrative hearings, automation of electronic notices to insurance licensees, and insurance producer activities.


SPONSORS: Rep. Infantine, Hills. 16; Rep. Ammon, Hills. 42; Sen. Gannon, Dist 23; Sen. Perkins Kwoka, Dist 21


COMMITTEE: Commerce and Consumer Affairs






This bill clarifies department of insurance administrative hearing procedures, establishes certain notice requirements regarding insurer assessments, and revises grounds for license revocation or denial.  


The bill is a request of the insurance department.


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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.






In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty Three


AN ACT relative to administrative hearings, automation of electronic notices to insurance licensees, and insurance producer activities.


Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:


1  Insurance Department; Hearings.  Amend RSA 400-A:17 to read as follows:

400-A:17  Hearings.  

I.  Except as otherwise provided in this section or other applicable law that requires a hearing, the commissioner may hold hearings for any purpose within the scope of this title as [he] the commissioner may deem advisable.

II.  [He] The commissioner shall hold a hearing:

(a)  If required by any provision of this title[,]; or

(b)  [or] Upon written application for a hearing by a person aggrieved by any act or impending act, or by any report, rule, regulation, or order of the commissioner (other than an order for the holding of a hearing, or order on a hearing, or pursuant to such order, of which hearing such person had notice) if the application meets the requirements of paragraph III.

III.  Any such application must be filed with the commissioner within 30 days after such person knew or reasonably should have known of such act, impending act, failure, report, rule, regulation, or order, unless a different period is provided for by other applicable law, and in which case such other law shall govern.  The application shall briefly state the respects in which the applicant is so aggrieved, together with the ground to be relied upon for the relief to be demanded at the hearing.  If there are exigent circumstances, the applicant shall request an expedited hearing in accordance with paragraph IV.  The commissioner may require that the application be signed and sworn to by a person competent to be a witness in civil courts.  The application for a hearing shall be scheduled for an initial hearing within a reasonable time not to exceed 60 days from the date of receipt of the application.  An applicant may request additional time to be heard on the matter by notifying the commissioner of such a request in writing.  If the commissioner finds the application does not comply with this paragraph or is meritless, the commissioner shall deny the hearing request, in which case the original ruling shall be the final order, appealable under RSA 400-A:24.

IV.  Exigent Circumstances.  If the commissioner finds that the application is timely, made in good faith, and that the applicant would be [so aggrieved if his grounds are established he] irreparably harmed if an expedited hearing is not held, the commissioner shall hold a hearing within 30 days after [the filing] receipt of the application[, or within 30 days after the application has been sworn to, whichever is the later date], unless [in either case] the hearing is [postponed by mutual consent] continued by order of the commissioner or the commissioner's designee.  An applicant shall request an expedited hearing by clearly referencing this paragraph in the application filed under paragraph III in order to be heard within 30 days of filing.

V.  [Failure to hold the hearing upon application therefor of a person entitled thereto as hereinabove provided shall constitute a denial of the relief sought, and shall be the equivalent of a final order of the commissioner on hearing for the purpose of an appeal under RSA 400-A:24.

VI.]  If requested, pending the hearing and decision thereon, the commissioner or the commissioner's designee may suspend, [or] postpone, or stay the effective date of his or her previous action.

2  Administration Fund.  Amend RSA 400-A:39, VIII to read as follows:

VIII.  The commissioner shall perform the calculations required by this section and notify each insurer of the insurer's assessment payable under this section as soon as practicable after July 1 of each year.  The commissioner shall provide notice to the insurer by electronic means as specified by the commissioner.  The notice shall be deemed to have been given when either posted on the department's website or emailed to the insurer at the insurer’s email address on file with the department.  The posting on the department's website or copy of the email shall be prima facie evidence that notice has been provided.

3  Insurance Producer License Denial or Revocation.  Amend RSA 402-J:12, I to read as follows:

I.  The commissioner may place on probation, suspend, revoke, or refuse to issue or renew an insurance producer's license, [or] and may levy an administrative fine not to exceed $2,500 per violation, in accordance with RSA 400-A:15, III or any combination of actions for any one or more of the following causes:

(a)  Providing incorrect, misleading, incomplete, or materially untrue information in the license application.

(b)  Violating any insurance laws, or violating any rule, regulation, subpoena, or order of the commissioner or of another state's insurance commissioner.

(c)  Obtaining or attempting to obtain a license through misrepresentation or fraud.

(d)  Improperly withholding, misappropriating, or converting any moneys or properties in the course of doing insurance business.

(e)  Intentionally misrepresenting the terms of an actual or proposed insurance contract or application for insurance.

(f)  Having been convicted of a felony.

(g)  Having admitted or been found to have committed any [insurance] unfair trade practice or fraud.

(h)  Using fraudulent, coercive, or dishonest practices, or demonstrating incompetence, untrustworthiness or financial irresponsibility [in the conduct of business in this state or elsewhere] whether directly, as an individual, or through activities for an entity, in the conduct of any business activity, or fraud, misappropriation or conversion of funds, misrepresentation or breach of fiduciary duty involving any activity in this state or elsewhere.

(i)  Having an insurance producer license, or its equivalent, denied, suspended, or revoked in any other state, province, district, or territory.

(j)  Forging another's name to an application for insurance or to any document related to an insurance transaction.

(k)  Improperly using notes or any other reference material to complete an examination for an insurance license.

(l)  Knowingly accepting insurance business from an individual who is not licensed.

(m)  Failing to comply with an administrative or court order imposing a child support obligation.

4  Insurance Producer License Denial or Revocation.  Amend RSA 402-J:12, III to read as follows:

III.  The license of a business entity may be suspended, revoked, or refused if the commissioner finds, after hearing in accordance with RSA 400-A:17, that an individual licensee's violation was known or should have been known by one or more of the partners, officers, or managers acting on behalf of the partnership or corporation and the violation was neither reported to the commissioner nor had any corrective action been taken.

5  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.