Senate Bill No. 654
(By Senators Helmick, Chafin, Craigo, Deem, Dittmar, Fanning,
Kessler, Minard, Prezioso, Sharpe, Snyder, Wooton and Sprouse)
[Originating in the Committee on Banking and Insurance;
reported February 28, 2000.]
A BILL to amend and reenact sections two and three, article twelve,
chapter thirty-three of the code of West Virginia, one
thousand nine hundred thirty-one, as amended, all relating to
authorizing the insurance commissioner to grant provisional
licensure to an applicant for an insurance agent's license
pending the applicant's appointment by a licensed insurer.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That sections two and three, article twelve, chapter thirty-
three of the code of West Virginia, one thousand nine hundred
thirty-one, as amended, be amended and reenacted, all to read as
ARTICLE 12. AGENTS, BROKERS, SOLICITORS AND EXCESS LINE.
§ 33-12-2. Qualifications.
For the protection of the people of West Virginia, the
commissioner shall not issue, renew or permit to exist any agent's,
broker's or solicitor's license except to an individual who:
(a) Is eighteen years of age or more.
(b) Is a resident of West Virginia, except that a broker's
license shall be issued only to nonresidents, and except for
nonresident life and accident and sickness agents as provided in
section eight of this article.
Effective the first day of June, one thousand nine hundred
ninety-one, brokers' licenses shall cease to exist. Licensing of
nonresidents for property casualty will be made pursuant to section
eight-a of this article.
(c) Is, in the case of an agent applicant, appointed as agent
by a licensed insurer for the kind or kinds of insurance for which
application is made, subject to issuance of license, or, in the
case of a solicitor applicant, appointed as solicitor by a licensed
resident agent, subject to issuance of license, except that on or
after the first day of June, one thousand nine hundred ninety, no
solicitor's license will be issued which is not a renewal of an
(d) Does not intend to use the license principally for the
purpose, in the case of life or accident and sickness insurance, of procuring insurance on himself or herself, members of his or her
family or his or her relatives; or, as to insurance other than life
and accident and sickness, upon his or her property or insurable
interests of those of his or her family or his or her relatives or
those of his or her employer, employees or firm, or corporation in
which he or she owns a substantial interest, or of the employees of
such firm or corporation, or on property or insurable interests for
which the applicant or any such relative, employer, firm or
corporation is the trustee, bailee or receiver. For the purposes
of this provision, a vendor's or lender's interest in property sold
or being sold under contract or which is the security for any loan,
shall not be deemed to constitute property or an insurable interest
of such vendor or lender.
(e) Satisfies the commissioner that he or she is trustworthy
and competent. The commissioner may test the competency of an
applicant for a license under this section by examination. Each
examinee shall pay a twenty-five dollar examination fee for each
examination to the commissioner who shall deposit said examination
fee into the state treasury for the benefit of the state fund,
general revenue. The commissioner may, at his or her discretion,
designate an independent testing service to prepare and administer
such examination subject to direction and approval by the commissioner, and examination fees charged by such service shall be
paid by the applicant.
(f) For new agents first licensed on or after the first day of
July, one thousand nine hundred eighty-nine, completes a program of
insurance education as established below: Provided, That a written
waiver from the insurance education requirements for life, accident
and sickness, or property and casualty insurance may be granted to
any person who can demonstrate to the satisfaction of the
commissioner that he or she has been licensed as a resident agent
in good standing in another state within the sixty-day period
immediately preceding his or her application for a resident license
in West Virginia. The waiver, if granted, does not exempt the
applicant from an examination pertaining to the laws of this state
for each kind of insurance for which application is made.
There is hereby created the board of insurance agent
education. The board of insurance agent education shall consist of
the commissioner of insurance and six members appointed by the
commissioner. The members appointed by the commissioner shall be
two licensed property and casualty insurance agents, one licensed
life insurance agent, one licensed health and accident insurance
agent, one representative of a domestic insurance company, and one representative of a foreign insurance company: Provided, That no
board shall be appointed that fails to include companies or agents
for companies representing at least two thirds of the net written
insurance premiums in the state. Each member shall serve a term of
three years and shall be eligible for reappointment.
(1) The board of insurance agent education shall establish the
criteria for a program of insurance education and submit the
proposal for the approval of the commissioner on or before the
thirty-first day of December of each year.
(2) The commissioner and the board, under standards
established by the board, may approve any course or program of
instruction developed or sponsored by an authorized insurer,
accredited college or university, agents association, insurance
trade association or independent program of instruction that
presents the criteria and the number of hours that the board and
commissioner determine appropriate for the purpose of this article.
(g) The commissioner may issue a provisional license to any
agent applicant meeting the qualifications as set forth in this
section, but who has not been appointed as an agent by a licensed
(1) Notwithstanding other provisions of the code, an applicant
who receives a provisional license:
(A) May not solicit, negotiate, effect or countersign
insurance contracts or otherwise transact insurance business;
(B) Is not subject to the continuing education requirements
set forth in section two-a of this article; and
(C) May hold the provisional license for a period of one year
from the date of issuance.
(2) A provisional license may be upgraded to an agent's
license when an applicant is appointed as an agent by a licensed
insurer and when any other requirements under this article for
licensing agents are satisfied.
(3) The commissioner may suspend, revoke or refuse to upgrade
a provisional license for any of the same causes and pursuant to
the same procedures as are applicable to suspension or revocation
of licenses of agents in general under article twelve of this
(4) There shall be no fees for a provisional license.
§ 33-12-3. Application.
(a) Application for an agent's, broker's or solicitor's
license or renewal thereof shall be made to the commissioner upon
a form prescribed by him and shall contain the applicant's name,
social security number and such information and supporting
documents as the commissioner may require and the commissioner may require such application to be made under the applicant's oath.
(b) If for an agent's license, other than a provisional
license, the application shall show the kinds of insurance to be
transacted, and shall be accompanied by the written appointment of
the applicant as agent by at least one licensed insurer for each
kind of insurance for which application is made.
(c) If for a solicitor's license, the application shall be
accompanied by written appointment of the applicant as solicitor by
a licensed agent.
(d) If for a broker's license, the application shall be
accompanied by a statement upon a form prescribed by the
commissioner as to the trustworthiness and competency of the
applicant, signed by at least three licensed resident agents of
(e) Willful misrepresentation of any fact in any such
application or any documents in support thereof is a violation of