Financial Services Commission re Rule 690-170.0155 1/18/2006

Dec 20, 2006

On January 11, 2006, there was a meeting of the Financial Services Commission (FSC), which consists of Governor Jeb Bush and Cabinet members Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher, Attorney General Charlie Crist and Agriculture and Consumer Services Commissioner Charles Bronson.

The FSC approved the amendment of Rule 69O-170.0155, which includes a form that will be available electronically to notify the applicant or policyholder for any personal lines residential property insurance policy, at the time of the issuance of the policy and at each renewal, of the availability and the range of each premium discount, credit, other rate differential, or reduction in deductibles. The form also describes generally what actions the policyholders may be able to take to reduce their windstorm premium and provides a list of premium discounts, credits, other rate differentials and reductions in deductible ranges that have been approved by the Office of Insurance Regulation (OIR) for each insurer licensed in the state.

In addition, the FSC approved amendments, as modified, to Rule Chapter 69O-170, Part 1, related to Property and Casualty Insurance Rating and Rate Filing Procedures, and to Rule 69O-175.003, related to Motor Vehicle Insurance Ratemaking and Rate Filing Procedures. At the meeting, CFO Tom Gallagher suggested that the proposed Rules be amended to delete reference to a proposed streamlined review and expedited approval of annual filings that are +/-5% of existing rates. CFO Gallagher emphasized the importance for insurance companies to thoroughly justify all rate increases, no matter the size of the increase. After discussion, the FSC agreed to delete this language, and the Rules, as amended, were approved.

The amended Rules provide that the basis for agency action regarding rates is an insurer’s rate filing. A rate filing is defined, for these Rules, as those matters the insurer wants considered in support of its rate request, along with any additional information required by OIR that is submitted prior to the issuance of a Notice of Intent to Deny. These Rule amendments also improve the quality of rate filings by providing specific detail regarding the components of a filing so as to minimize OIR’s processing of incomplete filings. The Rules also delete outdated language, mandate electronic filing and update and adopt rate filing forms.

Item 4 on the Agenda, which related to Rule 690-170.003, Calculation of Investment Income and Rule 690-175.001, Calculation and Use of Investment Income in Motor Vehicle Insurance Rates, was withdrawn.

Finally, the FSC approved the reinstatement of Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty to take final agency action on certain recommended orders issued by the Division of Administrative Hearings. 

Should you have any question or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact Colodny Fass.