Senate
House
Joint
Bill Status
WV Code
Audits/ Reports
Educational
Contact
home
home

West Virginia Code

Search

Chapter 33     Entire Code
‹ Chapter 32B  |  Chapter 34 › Printer Friendly Versions
Chapter 33  |  Article 33 - 4  |  Section 15B

1 - DEFINITIONS

2 - INSURANCE COMMISSIONER

3 - LICENSING, FEES AND TAXATION OF

3A - STATE OF ENTRY FOR FOREIGN INS

4A - ALL-PAYER CLAIMS DATABASE

5 - ORGANIZATION AND PROCEDURES OF

6 - THE INSURANCE POLICY

6A - CANCELLATION OR NONRENEWAL OF

6B - DECLINATION OF AUTOMOBILE LIAB

6C - GUARANTEED LOSS RATIOS AS APPL

6D - MOTOR VEHICLE REPAIR AND REPLA

6F - DISCLOSURE OF NONPUBLIC PERSON

7 - ASSETS AND LIABILITIES

8 - INVESTMENTS

8A - USE OF CLEARING CORPORATIONS A

9 - ADMINISTRATION OF DEPOSITS

10 - REHABILITATION AND LIQUIDATIO

11 - UNFAIR TRADE PRACTICES

11A - INSURANCE SALES CONSUMER PRO

12 - INSURANCE PRODUCERS AND SOLIC

12A - CONTRACTUAL RELATIONSHIPS BE

12B - ADJUSTERS

12C - SURPLUS LINE

13 - LIFE INSURANCE

13A - VARIABLE CONTRACTS

13B - CHARITABLE GIFT ANNUITIES

13C - VIATICAL SETTLEMENTS ACT

14 - GROUP LIFE INSURANCE

15 - ACCIDENT AND SICKNESS INSURAN

15A - WEST VIRGINIA LONG-TERM CARE

15B - UNIFORM HEALTH CARE ADMINIST

15C - DIABETES INSURANCE

15D - INDIVIDUAL LIMITED HEALTH BE

15E - DISCOUNT MEDICAL PLAN ORGANI

16 - GROUP ACCIDENT AND SICKNESS I

16A - GROUP HEALTH INSURANCE CONVE

16B - ACCIDENT AND SICKNESS RATES

16C - EMPLOYER GROUP ACCIDENT AND

16D - MARKETING AND RATE PRACTICES

16E - CONTRACEPTIVE COVERAGE

16F - GROUP LIMITED HEALTH BENEFIT

16G - WEST VIRGINIA HEALTH BENEFIT

16H - REVIEW OF ADVERSE DETERMINAT

17 - FIRE AND MARINE INSURANCE

17A - PROPERTY INSURANCE DECLINATI

18 - CASUALTY INSURANCE

19 - SURETY INSURANCE

20 - RATES AND RATING ORGANIZATION

20A - WEST VIRGINIA ESSENTIAL INSU

20B - RATES AND MALPRACTICE INSURA

20C - CANCELLATION OR NONRENEWAL O

20D - TAIL INSURANCE

20E - WEST VIRGINIA MEDICAL PROFES

20F - PHYSICIANS' MUTUAL INSURANCE

21 - RECIPROCAL INSURERS

22 - FARMERS' MUTUAL FIRE INSURANC

23 - FRATERNAL BENEFIT SOCIETIES

24 - HOSPITAL SERVICE CORPORATIONS

25 - HEALTH CARE CORPORATIONS

25A - HEALTH MAINTENANCE ORGANIZAT

25B - FEDERAL INSURANCE SUBSIDY FO

25C - HEALTH MAINTENANCE ORGANIZAT

25D - PREPAID LIMITED HEALTH SERVI

25E - PATIENTS' EYE CARE ACT

25F - COVERAGE FOR PATIENT COST OF

25G - PROVIDER SPONSORED NETWORKS

26 - WEST VIRGINIA GUARANTY ASSOCI

26A - WEST VIRGINIA LIFE AND HEALT

26B - WEST VIRGINIA HEALTH MAINTEN

27 - INSURANCE HOLDING COMPANY SYS

28 - INDIVIDUAL ACCIDENT AND SICKN

29 - LIFE AND ACCIDENT AND SICKNES

30 - MINE SUBSIDENCE INSURANCE

31 - CAPTIVE INSURANCE

31A - SPONSORED CAPTIVE INSURANCE

32 - RISK RETENTION ACT

33 - ANNUAL AUDITED FINANCIAL REPO

34 - ADMINISTRATIVE SUPERVISION

34A - STANDARDS AND COMMISSIONER'S

35 - CRIMINAL SANCTIONS FOR FAILUR

36 - BUSINESS TRANSACTED WITH PROD

37 - MANAGING GENERAL AGENTS

38 - REINSURANCE INTERMEDIARY ACT

39 - DISCLOSURE OF MATERIAL TRANSA

40 - RISK-BASED CAPITAL (RBC) FOR

41 - PRIVILEGES AND IMMUNITY

42 - WOMEN'S ACCESS TO HEALTH CARE

43 - INSURANCE TAX PROCEDURES ACT

44 - UNAUTHORIZED INSURERS ACT

45 - ETHICS AND FAIRNESS IN INSURE

46 - THIRD-PARTY ADMINISTRATOR ACT

46A - PROFESSIONAL EMPLOYER ORGANI

47 - INTERSTATE INSURANCE PRODUCT

48 - MODEL HEALTH PLAN FOR UNINSUR

49 - FLOOD INSURANCE

WVC 33 - CHAPTER 33. INSURANCE.
WVC 33 - 4 - ARTICLE 4. GENERAL PROVISIONS.

WVC 33 - 4 - 1 §33-4-1. Compliance with chapter required.
No person shall transact insurance in West Virginia or relative to a subject of insurance resident, located or to be performed in West Virginia without complying with the applicable provisions of this chapter.

WVC 33 - 4 - 2 §33-4-2. Application of chapter to particular types of insurers.
(a) No provision of this chapter shall apply to:

(1) Hospital service corporations and medical service corporations except as stated in article twenty-four of this chapter;

(2) Fraternal benefit societies except as stated in article twenty-three of this chapter;

(3) Farmers' mutual fire insurance companies except as stated in article twenty-two of this chapter;

(4) Warranties;

(5) Service contracts;

(6) Maintenance agreements.

(b) For the purposes of this article:

(1) "Holder" means a resident of this state who either purchases a service agreement or is legally in possession of a service contract and is entitled to enforce the rights of the original purchaser of the service contract.

(2) "Maintenance agreement" means a contract for a limited period that provides only for scheduled maintenance.

(3) "Provider" means a person who is obligated to a holder pursuant to the terms of a service contract to repair, replace or perform maintenance on or to indemnify the holder for the costs of repairing, replacing or performing maintenance on goods.

(4) "Service contract" means an agreement entered into for a separately stated consideration and for a specified term under which a provider agrees to repair, replace or maintain a product or provide indemnification for the repair, replacement or maintenance of a product for operational or structural failure caused by a defect in materials or workmanship or by normal wear. A service contract may additionally provide for incidental payment or indemnity under limited circumstances including towing, rental and emergency road service or for the repair or replacement of a product for damage resulting from power surges or accidental damage incurred in handling the product.

(5) "Warranty" means in relation to a product or service an undertaking that guarantees indemnity for defective parts, mechanical or electrical breakdown, labor costs or other remedial measures, such as repair or replacement of the product or repetition of services and that is made solely by the manufacturer, importer or seller of the product or services made without payment of additional consideration, not negotiated or separated from the sale of the product or service and incidental to the sale of the product or service.

WVC 33 - 4 - 3 §33-4-3. Expiration of existing licenses.
The expiration dates of licenses in force immediately prior to the effective date of this chapter, and lawfully existing under any law repealed by this chapter, are hereby extended to midnight, March thirty-first next succeeding such effective date, at which time they shall expire. Any such license may be renewed, suspended or revoked as though originally issued under this chapter.

WVC 33 - 4 - 4 §33-4-4. Effect of chapter on existing contracts.
No provision of this chapter shall be deemed to modify or invalidate any insurance policy heretofore lawfully in force.

WVC 33 - 4 - 5 §33-4-5. Continuation of existing forms and filings.
Every insurance form and every rate or other filing lawfully in use immediately prior to the effective date of this chapter shall continue in effect until the commissioner otherwise prescribes pursuant to this chapter.

WVC 33 - 4 - 6 §33-4-6. Effect of repealed laws on existing rights, actions or punishments.
Repeal by this chapter of any laws shall not affect or abate any right heretofore accrued, action or proceeding heretofore commenced or any unlawful act or violation heretofore committed under such laws and punishment or deprivation of license as a consequence thereof as provided by such laws. All such laws shall be deemed to continue in force to the extent made necessary by the foregoing provision.

WVC 33 - 4 - 7 §33-4-7. Particular provisions prevail over general provisions.
Provisions of this chapter relative to a particular kind of insurance or a particular type of insurer or to a particular matter shall prevail over provisions relating to insurance in general or insurers in general or to such matter in general.

WVC 33 - 4 - 8 §33-4-8. General penalty.
In addition to the refusal to renew, suspension or revocation of a license, or penalty in lieu of the foregoing, because of violation of any provision of this chapter, it is a misdemeanor for any person to violate any provision of this chapter unless the violation is declared to be a felony by this chapter or other law of this state. Unless another penalty is provided in this chapter or by the laws of this state, every person convicted of a misdemeanor for the violation of any provision of this chapter shall be fined not more than one thousand dollars or confined in jail not more than six months, or both fined and confined.

WVC 33 - 4 - 9 §33-4-9. Repeal of inconsistent provisions; prior law not revived.
The provisions of all acts or parts of acts, or of this code, which are inconsistent with the provisions of this chapter are hereby repealed to the extent of such inconsistency. Repeal by this chapter or this act of any provision of any act or parts of acts or of this code shall not have the effect of reviving any prior law theretofore repealed or superseded by such repealed provision.

WVC 33 - 4 - 10 §33-4-10. Severability.
If any provision of this chapter or the application of such provision to any circumstance is held to be unconstitutional or otherwise invalid, the remainder of this chapter or the application of the provisions to other circumstances shall not be affected thereby. The Legislature hereby declares that it would have passed the remainder of this chapter if it had known that such provision, or its application to any circumstances, would be declared unconstitutional or otherwise invalid.

WVC 33 - 4 - 11 §33-4-11. Effective date of chapter.
Except as otherwise expressly stated herein, this chapter shall become effective on the first day of January, one thousand nine hundred fifty-eight.

WVC 33 - 4 - 12 §33-4-12. Service of process on licensed insurers.
The secretary of state shall be, and is hereby constituted, the attorney-in-fact of every licensed insurer, domestic, foreign or alien, transacting insurance in this state, upon whom all legal process in any action, suit or proceeding against it shall be served and he or she may accept service of the process. The process shall be served upon the secretary of state, or accepted by him or her, in the same manner as provided for service of process upon unlicensed insurers under subdivisions (2) and (3), subsection (b), section thirteen of this article. Each licensed insurer shall pay to the secretary of state an annual fee of twenty-five dollars for services as authorized agent for service of process, one half of which shall be deposited in the state fund, general revenue and one half of the fees in the service fees and collections account established by section two, article one, chapter fifty-nine of this code for the operation of the office of the secretary of state.

WVC 33 - 4 - 13 §33-4-13. Service of process on unlicensed insurers.
(a) The purpose of this section is to subject certain insurers to the jurisdiction of the courts of this state in suits by or on behalf of insureds or beneficiaries under certain insurance contracts and to subject said insurers to the jurisdiction of the courts of this state in suits by or on behalf of the insurance commissioner of West Virginia. The Legislature declares that it is a subject of concern that certain insurers, while not licensed to transact insurance in this state, are soliciting the sale of insurance and selling insurance to residents of this state, thus presenting the insurance commissioner with the problem of resorting to courts of foreign jurisdictions for the purpose of enforcing the insurance laws of this state for the protection of our citizens. The Legislature declares that it is also a subject of concern that many residents of this state hold policies of insurance issued or delivered in this state by insurers not licensed to transact insurance in this state, thus presenting to such residents the often insuperable obstacle of resorting to distant fora for the purpose of asserting legal rights under such policies. In furtherance of such state interest, the Legislature herein provides a method of substituted service of process upon such insurers and declares that in so doing it exercises its powers to protect its residents and to define, for the purpose of this section, what constitutes transacting insurance in this state, and also exercises powers and privileges available to the state by virtue of publiclaw number fifteen, seventy-ninth Congress of the United States, chapter twenty, first session, Senate number three hundred forty, as amended, which declares that the business of insurance and every person engaged therein shall be subject to the laws of the several states.

(b) (1) Any of the following acts in this state, effected by mail or otherwise, by an unlicensed foreign or alien insurer: (i) The issuance or delivery of contracts of insurance to residents of this state or to corporations authorized to do business therein, (ii) the solicitation of applications for such contracts, (iii) the collection of premiums, membership fees, assessments or other considerations for such contracts, or (iv) any other transaction of business, is equivalent to and shall constitute an appointment by such insurer of the secretary of state and his or her successor in office, to be its true and lawful attorney, upon whom may be served all lawful process in any action, suit or proceeding instituted by or on behalf of an insured or beneficiary arising out of any such contract of insurance, and in any action, suit or proceeding which may be instituted by the insurance commissioner in the name of any such insured or beneficiary or in the name of the state of West Virginia, and in any administrative proceeding before the commissioner, and any such act shall be signification of its agreement that such service of process is of the same legal force and validity as personal service of process in this state upon such insurer.

(2) Such service of process upon any such insurer or upon an insurer pursuant to section twenty-two, article three of this chapter in any such action or proceeding in any court of competent jurisdiction of this state, or in any administrative proceeding before the commissioner, may be made by serving the secretary of state or his or her chief clerk with two copies and an original thereof and the payment to him or her of the fee required by section two, article one, chapter fifty-nine of this code. The secretary of state shall forward a copy of such process by registered or certified mail to the defendant at its last-known principal place of business and shall keep a record of all process so served upon him or her. Such service of process is sufficient, provided notice of such service and a copy of the process are sent within ten days thereafter by or on behalf of the plaintiff or moving party to the defendant, or responding party, at its last-known principal place of business by registered or certified mail with return receipt requested. The plaintiff or moving party shall file with the clerk of the court in which the action is pending, or with the judge or magistrate of such court in case there be no clerk, or in the official records of the commissioner if an administrative proceeding before the commissioner, an affidavit of compliance herewith, a copy of the process and either a return receipt purporting to be signed by the defendant or responding party or a person qualified to receive its registered or certified mail in accordance with the rules and customs of thepost-office department; or, if acceptance was refused by the defendant or responding party or an agent thereof, the original envelope bearing a notation by the postal authorities that receipt was refused. Service of process so made shall be deemed to have been made within the territorial jurisdiction of any court in this state.

(3) Service of process in any such action, suit or proceeding shall in addition to the manner provided in subdivision (2) of this subsection (b) be valid if served upon any person within this state who, in this state on behalf of such insurer, is

(A) Soliciting insurance, or

(B) Making, issuing or delivering any contract of insurance, or

(C) Collecting or receiving any premium, membership fee, assessment or other consideration for insurance: Provided, That notice of such service and a copy of such process are sent within ten days thereafter, by or on behalf of the plaintiff or moving party to the defendant or responding party at the last-known principal place of business of the defendant or responding party, by registered or certified mail with return receipt requested. The plaintiff or moving party shall file with the clerk of the court in which the action is pending, or with the judge or magistrate of such court in case there be no clerk, or in the official records of the commissioner if an administrative proceeding before the commissioner, an affidavit of compliance herewith, a copy of theprocess and either a return receipt purporting to be signed by the defendant or responding party, or a person qualified to receive its registered or certified mail in accordance with the rules and customs of the post-office department; or, if acceptance was refused by the defendant or responding party, or an agent thereof, the original envelope bearing a notation by the postal authorities that receipt was refused.

(4) The papers referred to in subdivisions (2) and (3) of this subsection (b) shall be filed within thirty days after the return receipt or other official proof of delivery or the original envelope bearing a notation of refusal, as the case may be, is received by the plaintiff or moving party. Service of process shall be complete ten days after such process and the accompanying papers are filed in accordance with this section.

(5) Nothing in this section contained shall limit or abridge the right to serve any process, notice or demand upon any insurer in any other manner now or hereafter permitted by law.

(c) (1) Before any unauthorized or unlicensed foreign or alien insurer shall file or cause to be filed any pleading in any action, suit or proceeding instituted against it, or any notice, order, pleading or process in an administrative proceeding before the commissioner instituted against such insurer, such unauthorized or unlicensed insurer shall either: (i) Deposit with the clerk of the court in which such action, suit or proceeding is pending, or with the commissioner in an administrative proceeding before thecommissioner, cash or securities or file with such clerk or the commissioner a bond with good and sufficient sureties, to be approved by the court or the commissioner, in an amount to be fixed by the court or commissioner sufficient to secure the payment of any final judgment which may be rendered in such action or administrative proceeding: Provided, That the court or the commissioner may in its, his or her respective discretion make an order dispensing with such deposit or bond where the auditor of the state shall have certified to such court or commissioner that such insurer maintains within this state funds or securities in trust or otherwise sufficient and available to satisfy any final judgment which may be entered in such action, suit or proceeding; or (ii) procure a license to transact insurance in this state.

(2) The court or the commissioner in any action, suit or proceeding in which service is made in the manner provided in subdivision (2) or (3), subsection (b) of this section may, in its, his or her respective discretion, order such postponement as may be necessary to afford the defendant or responding party reasonable opportunity to comply with the provisions of subdivision (1) of this subsection (c) and to defend such action or proceeding.

(3) Nothing in subdivision (1) of this subsection (c) is to be construed to prevent an unauthorized or unlicensed foreign or alien insurer from filing a motion to set aside service thereof made in the manner provided in subdivision (2) or (3), subsection (b) of this section on the grounds that such insurer has not done any ofthe acts enumerated in subdivision (1), subsection (b) of this section, or in section twenty-two, article three of this chapter.

(d) In any action against an unauthorized or unlicensed foreign or alien insurer upon a contract of insurance issued or delivered in this state to a resident thereof or to a corporation authorized to do business therein, if the insurer has failed for thirty days after demand prior to the commencement of the action to make payment in accordance with the terms of the contract, and it appears to the court that such refusal was vexatious and without reasonable cause, the court may allow to the plaintiff a reasonable attorney's fee and include such fee in any judgment that may be rendered in such action. Such fee shall not exceed twelve and one-half percent of the amount which the court finds the plaintiff is entitled to recover against the insurer, but in no event shall such fee be less than twenty-five dollars. Failure of an insurer to defend any such action shall be deemed prima facie evidence that its failure to make payment was vexatious and without reasonable cause.

WVC 33 - 4 - 14 §33-4-14. Financial statement filings; annual and quarterly statements; required format; foreign insurers; agents of the commissioner.

                                            (a) Each licensed insurer shall annually on or before March 1, unless the time is extended by the commissioner for good cause shown, file with the commissioner a true statement of its financial condition, transactions and affairs as of the preceding December 31. Such statement shall be on the appropriate National Association of Insurance Commissioners annual statement blank; shall be prepared in accordance with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners annual statement instructions handbook; and shall follow the accounting practices and procedures prescribed by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners accounting practices and procedures manual as amended: Provided, That each licensed insurer shall also file true statements of financial condition on a more frequent basis if the commissioner so orders. The commissioner shall establish the frequency, due date and form acceptable to him or her for such filings: Provided, however, That the statement of an alien insurer shall relate only to its transactions and affairs in the United States unless the commissioner requires otherwise.

                                            (b) Each domestic insurer shall also file with the commissioner a true quarterly statement of its financial condition, transactions and affairs as of March 31, June 30, and September 30, of each year. Quarterly statements shall be due forty-five days after the end of each quarter. All quarterly statements shall be submitted on the appropriate National Association of Insurance Commissioners quarterly statement blank; shall be prepared in accordance with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners quarterly statement instructions; and shall follow the accounting practices and procedures prescribed by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners accounting practices and procedures manual, as amended. The commissioner may subject any licensed insurer to the requirements of this section whenever the commissioner deems it necessary.

                                            (c) The commissioner may require that all or part of the information contained in the annual statement blank and the quarterly statement blanks be submitted in a computer-readable form compatible with the electronic data processing system of the department.

                                            (d) Each domestic, foreign and alien insurer, organization or corporation that is subject to the requirements of this section shall annually, on or before March 1 each year, and forty-five days after the end of the first, second and third calendar quarters, file with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners a copy of its annual statement convention blank and the quarterly statement blanks, along with such additional filings as prescribed by the commissioner and shall pay the fee established by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners for filing, review or processing of the information. The information filed with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners shall be in the same format and scope as that required by the commissioner and shall include the signed jurat page and any other required information. Any amendments and addenda to the annual statement filing and quarterly statement filings subsequently filed with the commissioner shall also be filed with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

                                            (e) Foreign insurers that are domiciled in a state which has a law substantially similar to subsection (a) of this section shall be deemed in compliance with this section.

                                            (f) In the absence of actual malice, members of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, their duly authorized committees, subcommittees and task forces, their delegates, National Association of Insurance Commissioners employees and all others charged with the responsibility of collecting, reviewing, analyzing and disseminating the information developed from the filing of the annual statement convention blanks and the quarterly statement blanks shall be acting as agents of the commissioner under the authority of this article and shall not be subject to civil liability for libel, slander or any other cause of action by virtue of their collection, review, and analysis or dissemination of the data and information collected from the filings required hereunder.

                                            (g)(1) All financial analysis ratios and examination synopses concerning insurance companies that are submitted to the commissioner by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners insurance regulatory information system, and all actuarial reports, work papers and actuarial summaries submitted by insurers in conjunction with their annual financial statements is confidential by law and privileged. These documents are not subject to disclosure pursuant to chapter twenty-nine-b of this code, are not subject to subpoena and are not subject to discovery or admissible as evidence in any private civil action: Provided, That nothing in this section may be construed to limit the ability of parties in a civil action to discover such information from insurers under the Rules of Civil Procedure.

                                            (2) This subsection shall not be construed to limit the commissioner's authority to release the documents to the Actuarial Board for Counseling and Discipline (ABCD), so long as the material is required for the purpose of professional disciplinary proceedings and the ABCD establishes procedures satisfactory to the commissioner for preserving the confidentiality of the documents; nor shall this section be construed to limit the commissioner's authority to use the documents, materials or other information in furtherance of any regulatory or legal action brought as part of the commissioner's official duties.

                                            (3) Neither the commissioner nor any person who received documents, materials or other information while acting under the authority of the commissioner shall be permitted or required to testify in any private civil action concerning any confidential documents, materials or information subject to subdivision (1) of this subsection.

                                            (4) In order to assist in the performance of the commissioner's duties, the commissioner:

                                            (A) May share documents, materials or other information, including the confidential and privileged documents, materials or information subject to subparagraph (1) of this subsection with other state, federal and international regulatory agencies, and with state, federal and international law enforcement authorities, provided that the recipient agrees to maintain the confidentiality and privileged status of the document, material or other information and has the legal authority to maintain confidentiality; and

                                            (B) May receive documents, materials or information, including otherwise confidential and privileged documents, materials or information, from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and its affiliates and subsidiaries, and from regulatory and law enforcement officials of other foreign or domestic jurisdictions, and shall maintain as confidential or privileged any document, material or information received with notice or the understanding that it is confidential or privileged under the laws of the jurisdiction that is the source of the document, material or information.

                                            (h) The commissioner may suspend, revoke or refuse to renew the certificate of authority of any insurer failing to file its annual statement or the quarterly statement blanks, or any other statement of financial condition required by this section, when due or within any extension of time which the commissioner, for good cause, may have granted.

                                            (i) Any variance to the requirements of this section shall require the express authorization of the commissioner.

                                            (j) The commissioner shall propose rules for legislative approval in accordance with article three, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code to effectuate the requirements of this article. WVC 33 - 4 - 15 §33-4-15. Reinsurance.
(a) For purposes of this section, an "assumption reinsurance agreement" means any contract which:

(1) Transfers insurance obligations and/or risks of existing or in-force contracts of insurance from a transferring insurer to an assuming insurer; and

(2) Is intended to effect a novation of the transferred contract of insurance with the result that the assuming insurer becomes directly liable to the policyholders of the transferring insurer and the transferring insurer's insurance obligations and/or risks under the contracts are extinguished.

(b) An insurer shall reinsure its risks, or any part thereof, only in solvent insurers complying with the capital and surplus requirements of section five-b, article three of this chapter.

(c) Credit for reinsurance shall be governed by the provisions of sections fifteen-a and fifteen-b of this article.

(1) No credit shall be allowed, as an admitted asset or deduction from liability, to any ceding insurer for reinsurance, unless the reinsurance contract provides, in substance, that in the event of the insolvency of the ceding insurer, the reinsurance shall be payable under a contract reinsured by the assuming insurer on the basis of reported claims allowed by the liquidation court, without diminution because of the insolvency of the ceding insurer. Payments shall be made directly to the ceding insurer or to its domiciliary liquidator except: (A) Where the contract or other written agreement specifically provides another payee of the reinsurance in the event of the insolvency of the ceding insurer; or (B) where the assuming insurer, with the consent of the direct insured, has assumed the policy obligations of the ceding insurer as direct obligations of the assuming insurer to the payees under the policies and in substitution for the obligations of the ceding insurer to payees.

(2) The reinsurance agreement may provide that the domiciliary liquidator of an insolvent ceding insurer shall give written notice to the assuming insurer of the pendency of a claim against the ceding insurer on the contract reinsured within a reasonable time after the claim is filed in the liquidation proceeding. During the pendency of the claim, any assuming insurer may investigate the claim and interpose, at its own expense, in the proceeding where the claim is to be adjudicated any defenses which it deems available to the ceding insurer or its liquidator. The expense may be filed as a claim against the insolvent ceding insurer to the extent of a proportionate share of the benefit which may accrue to the ceding insurer solely as a result of the defense undertaken by the assuming insurer. Where two or more assuming insurers are involved in the same claim and a majority in interest elect to interpose a defense to the claim, the expense shall be apportioned in accordance with the terms of the reinsurance agreement as though the expense had been incurred by the ceding insurer.

(d) Any licensed insurer may accept reinsurance for the same kinds of insurance and within the same limits as it is authorized to transact direct insurance.

(e) A licensed insurer may reinsure all or substantially all of its risks on property or lives located in West Virginia, or substantially all of a major class thereof, with another insurer by an assumption reinsurance agreement: Provided, That the assumption reinsurance agreement shall not become effective unless filed in advance with and approved in writing by the Commissioner: Provided, however, That if a licensed insurer is deemed by the Commissioner to be in hazardous financial condition, as defined in article thirty-four-a of this chapter, or an administrative or judicial proceeding has been instituted against it for the purpose of liquidating, reorganizing or conserving the insurer, and the transfer of the contracts of insurance is determined by the Commissioner to be in the best interest of the policyholders, the Commissioner may by written order waive the advance filing and approval required by this section, which waiver may include a form of implied consent and adequate notification to the policyholder of the circumstances requiring the transfer.

(f) The Commissioner shall approve a reinsurance agreement within one hundred twenty days after the filing of same unless he or she finds that it is inequitable to the licensed insurer, its owners or its policyholders or would substantially reduce the protection or service to its policyholders. If the Commissioner does not approve the agreement, he or she shall notify the insurer in writing specifying his or her reasons therefor. If the Commissioner does not disapprove the agreement within one hundred twenty days, the agreement shall be deemed approved.

(g) A filing may not be made pursuant to this section unless the reinsurance agreement is certified under oath by responsible officers of the reinsurer and the reinsured to contain the entire agreement between the parties to the reinsurance agreement.

(h) The Commissioner shall promulgate rules pursuant to chapter twenty-nine-a of this code for the implementation and administration of the provisions of this section to include, but not be limited to, the type of assumption agreements subject to the provisions of this section, their content and the standards the Commissioner may utilize in reviewing the agreements.

(i) Any insurer subject to this section is also subject to the provisions of article thirty-eight of this chapter.

WVC 33 - 4 - 15 A §33-4-15a. Credit for reinsurance; definitions; requirements; trust accounts; reductions from liability; security; effective date.
(a) For purposes of this section, an "accredited reinsurer" is one which:

(1) Has filed an application for accreditation and received a letter of accreditation from the commissioner;

(2) Is licensed to transact insurance or reinsurance in at least one of the fifty states of the United States or the District of Columbia or, in the case of a United States branch of an alien assuming insurer, is entered through and licensed to transact insurance or reinsurance in at least one of the fifty states of the United States or the District of Columbia;

(3) Has filed with the application a certified statement that the company submits to this state's jurisdiction and that the company will comply with the laws and rules of the state of West Virginia;

(4) Has filed with the application a certified statement that the company submits to the examination authority granted the commissioner by section nine, article two of this chapter and will pay all examination costs and fees as required by that section, and the one-time assessment on insurers imposed under section nine-a, article two of this chapter;

(5) Has filed with the application a copy of its most recent annual statement in a form consistent with the requirements of subdivision (8) of this subsection and a copy of its last audited financial statement;

(6) Has filed any other information the commissioner requests to determine that the company qualifies for accreditation under this section;

(7) Has remitted the applicable processing fee with its application for accreditation;

(8) Files with the commissioner after initial accreditation on or before the first day of March of each year a true statement of its financial condition, transactions and affairs as of the preceding thirty-first day of December. The statement shall be on the appropriate national association of insurance commissioners annual statement blank; shall be prepared in accordance with the national association of insurance commissioners annual statement instructions; and shall follow the accounting practices and procedures prescribed by the national association of insurance commissioners accounting practices and procedures manual as amended. The statement shall be accompanied by the applicable annual statement filing fee. The commissioner may grant extensions of time for filing of this annual statement upon application by the accredited reinsurer; and

(9) Files with the commissioner after initial accreditation by the first day of June of each year a copy of its audited financial statement for the period ending the preceding thirty-first day of December.

(b) If the commissioner determines that the assuming insurer has failed to continue to meet any of these qualifications, he or she may upon written notice and hearing, as prescribed by section thirteen, article two of this chapter, revoke an assuming insurer's accreditation. Credit shall not be allowed to a ceding insurer if the assuming insurer's accreditation has been revoked by the commissioner after notice and hearing.

(c) Credit for reinsurance shall be allowed a domestic ceding insurer or any foreign or alien insurer transacting insurance in West Virginia that is domiciled in a jurisdiction that employs standards regarding credit for reinsurance that are not substantially similar to those applicable under this article as either an asset or a deduction from liability on account of reinsurance ceded only when the reinsurer meets one of the following requirements:

(1) Credit shall be allowed when the reinsurance is ceded to an assuming insurer which is licensed to transact insurance or reinsurance in this state.

(2) Credit shall be allowed when the reinsurance is ceded to an assuming insurer which is accredited as a reinsurer in this state prior to the effective date of the reinsurance contract.

(3) Credit shall be allowed when the reinsurance is ceded to an assuming insurer which is domiciled and licensed in, or in the case of a United States branch of an alien assuming insurer, is entered through one of the fifty states of the United States or the District of Columbia and which employs standards regarding credit for reinsurance substantially similar to those applicable under this statute, and the ceding insurer provides evidence suitable to the commissioner that the assuming insurer:

(A) Maintains a surplus as regards policyholders in an amount not less than twenty million dollars: Provided, That the requirements of this paragraph do not apply to reinsurance ceded and assumed pursuant to pooling arrangements among insurers in the same holding company system;

(B) The ceding insurer provides the commissioner with a certified statement from the assuming insurer that the assuming insurer submits to the authority of this state to examine its books and records granted the commissioner by section nine, article two of this chapter and will pay all examination costs and fees as required by that section; and

(C) The reinsurer complies with the provisions of subdivision (6), subsection (c) herein.

(4) Credit shall be allowed when the reinsurance is ceded to an assuming insurer which maintains a trust fund as required by subsection (d) herein in a qualified United States financial institution, as defined by this section, for the payment of the valid claims of its United States policyholders and ceding insurers, their assigns and successors in interest, and complies with the provisions of subdivision (6) herein.

(5) Credit shall be allowed when the reinsurance is ceded to an assuming insurer not meeting the requirements of subdivisions (1) through (4), inclusive, subsection (c) of this section, but only with respect to the insurance of risks located in jurisdictions where such reinsurance is required by applicable law or regulation of that jurisdiction.

(6) If the assuming insurer is not licensed or accredited to transact insurance or reinsurance in this state, the credit permitted by subdivisions (3) and (4) of this subsection shall not be allowed unless the assuming insurer agrees in the reinsurance agreements:

(A) That in the event of the failure of the assuming insurer to perform its obligations under the terms of the reinsurance agreement, the assuming insurer, at the request of the ceding insurer, shall submit to the jurisdiction of any court of competent jurisdiction in any state of the United States, shall comply with all requirements necessary to give such court jurisdiction and shall abide by the final decision of such court or of any appellate court in the event of an appeal; and

(B) To designate the secretary of state as its true and lawful attorney upon whom may be served any lawful process in any action, suit or proceeding instituted by or on behalf of the ceding company. Process shall be served upon the secretary of state, or accepted by him or her, in the same manner as provided for service of process upon unlicensed insurers under section thirteen of this article: Provided, That this provision is not intended to conflict with or override the obligation of the parties to a reinsurance agreement to arbitrate their disputes, if such an obligation is created in the agreement.

(d) Whenever an assuming insurer establishes a trust fund for the payment of claims pursuant to the provisions of this section, the following requirements shall apply:

(1) The assuming insurer shall report annually to the commissioner information substantially the same as that required to be reported on the national association of insurance commissioners annual statement form by licensed insurers to enable the commissioner to determine the sufficiency of the trust fund. In the case of a single assuming insurer, the trust shall consist of a trusteed account representing the assuming insurer's liabilities attributable to business written in the United States and, in addition, the assuming insurer shall maintain a trusteed surplus of not less than twenty million dollars. In the case of a group, including incorporated and individual unincorporated underwriters, the trust shall consist of a trusteed account representing the group's liabilities attributable to business written in the United States and, in addition, the group shall maintain a trusteed surplus of which one hundred million dollars shall be held jointly for the benefit of United States ceding insurers of any member of the group. The incorporated members of the group shall not be engaged in any business other than underwriting as a member of the group and shall be subject to the same level of solvency regulation and control by the group's domiciliary regulator as are the unincorporated members. The group shall make available to the commissioner an annual certification of the solvency of each underwriter by the group's domiciliary regulator and its independent public accountants.

(2) In the case of a group of incorporated insurers under common administration which complies with the filing requirements contained in the previous paragraph; which has continuously transacted an insurance business outside the United States for at least three years immediately prior to making application for accreditation; which submits to this state's authority to examine its books and records and bears the expense of the examination; and which has aggregate policyholders' surplus of ten billion dollars, the trust shall be in an amount equal to the group's several liabilities attributable to business ceded by United States ceding insurers to any member of the group pursuant to reinsurance contracts issued in the name of the group. The group shall also maintain a joint trusteed surplus of which one hundred million dollars shall be held jointly for the benefit of United States ceding insurers of any member of the group as additional security for any such liabilities. Each member of the group shall make available to the commissioner an annual certification of the member's solvency by the member's domiciliary regulator and its independent public accountants.

(3) Any trust that is subject to the provisions of this section shall be established in a form approved by the commissioner. The trust instrument shall provide that contested claims shall be valid and enforceable upon the final order of any court of competent jurisdiction in the United States. The trust shall vest legal title to its assets in the trustees of the trust for its United States policyholders and ceding insurers, their assigns and successors in interest. The trust and the assuming insurer shall be subject to examination as determined by the commissioner. The trust described herein shall remain in effect for as long as the assuming insurer shall have outstanding obligations due under the reinsurance agreements subject to the trust.

(4) No later than the twenty-eighth day of February of each year the trustees of the trust shall report to the commissioner in writing setting forth the balance of the trust and listing the trust's investments at the preceding year's end. The trustees shall certify the date of termination of the trust, if so planned, or certify that the trust shall not expire prior to the next following December thirty-first.

(e) A reduction from liability for the reinsurance ceded by a ceding insurer subject to the requirements of this article to an assuming insurer not meeting the requirements of subsection (c) of this section shall be allowed in an amount not exceeding the liabilities carried by the ceding insurer. The reduction shall be in the amount of funds held by or on behalf of the ceding insurer, including funds held in trust for the ceding insurer, under a reinsurance contract with the assuming insurer as security for the payment of obligations thereunder: Provided, That the security is held in the United States subject to withdrawal solely by, and under the exclusive control of, the ceding insurer; or, in the case of a trust, held in a qualified United States financial institution, as defined by this section. The security may be in the form of:

(1) Cash;

(2) Securities listed by the securities valuation office of the national association of insurance commissioners and qualifying as admitted assets; or

(3) Clean, irrevocable, unconditional letters of credit, issued or confirmed by a qualified United States financial institution, as defined by this section, no later than the thirty-first day of December of the year for which filing is being made, and in the possession of the ceding company on or before the filing date of its annual statement: Provided, That letters of credit meeting applicable standards of issuer acceptability as of the dates of their issuance or confirmation shall, notwithstanding the issuing or confirming institution's subsequent failure to meet applicable standards of issuer acceptability, continue to be acceptable as security until their expiration, extension, renewal, modification or amendment, whichever first occurs.

(f) For purposes of this section, a "qualified United States financial institution" means an institution that:

(1) Is organized or licensed under the laws of the United States or any state thereof;

(2) Is regulated, supervised and examined by United States federal or state authorities having regulatory authority over banks and trust companies; and

(3) Has been determined by either the commissioner, or the securities valuation office of the national association of insurance commissioners, to meet the standards of financial condition and standing as are considered necessary and appropriate to regulate the quality of financial institutions whose letters of credit will be acceptable to the commissioner.

(g) A "qualified United States financial institution" means, for purposes of those provisions of this law specifying those institutions that are eligible to act as a fiduciary of a trust, an institution that:

(1) Is organized or, in the case of a United States branch or agency office of a foreign banking organization, licensed under the laws of the United States or any state thereof and has been granted authority to operate with fiduciary powers; and

(2) Is regulated, supervised and examined by federal or state authorities having regulatory authority over banks and trust companies.

(h) The provisions of this section shall apply to all cessions on or after the first day of January, one thousand nine hundred ninety-three.

WVC 33 - 4 - 15 B §33-4-15b. Reinsurance agreements; reduction of liability; requirements.
(a) This section applies to all domestic life insurers, domestic accident and sickness insurers, and domestic property and casualty insurers with respect to their accident and sickness business. This section also applies to all other licensed life insurers, accident and sickness insurers, and property and casualty insurers with respect to their accident and sickness business who are not subject to a substantially similar law or regulation in their domiciliary state. This section does not apply to assumption reinsurance, yearly renewable term reinsurance, or certain nonproportional reinsurance such as stop loss or catastrophic reinsurance.

(b) An insurer subject to this section shall not, for reinsurance ceded, reduce any liability or establish any asset in any financial statement filed with the commissioner if, by the terms of the reinsurance agreement, in substance or effect, any of the following conditions exist:

(1) The primary effect of the reinsurance agreement is to transfer deficiency reserves or excess interest reserves to the books of the reinsurer for a "risk charge" and the agreement does not provide for significant participation by the reinsurer in one or more of the following risks: Mortality, morbidity, investment or surrender benefit;

(2) The reserve credit taken by the ceding insurer is not incompliance with this chapter, including actuarial interpretations or standards adopted by the commissioner;

(3) The reserve credit taken by the ceding insurer is greater than the underlying reserve of the ceding company supporting the policy obligation transferred under the reinsurance agreement;

(4) The ceding insurer is required to reimburse the reinsurer for negative experience under the reinsurance agreement: Provided, That neither offsetting experience refunds against current and prior years' losses nor payment by the ceding insurer of an amount equal to current and prior years' losses upon voluntary termination of in-force reinsurance by that ceding insurer shall be considered such a reimbursement to the reinsurer for negative experience;

(5) The ceding insurer can be deprived of surplus at the reinsurer's option or automatically upon the occurrence of some event, such as the insolvency of the ceding insurer: Provided, That termination of the reinsurance agreement by the reinsurer for nonpayment of reinsurance premiums shall not be considered to be such a deprivation of surplus;

(6) The ceding insurer shall, at specific points in time scheduled in the agreement, terminate or automatically recapture all or part of the reinsurance ceded;

(7) No cash payment is due from the reinsurer, throughout the lifetime of the reinsurance agreement, with all settlements prior to the termination date of the agreement made only in a "reinsurance account," and no funds in such account are availablefor the payment of benefits;

(8) The reinsurance agreement involves the possible payment by the ceding insurer to the reinsurer of amounts other than from income reasonably expected from the reinsured policies; or

(9) Any other conditions specified by rules promulgated by the commissioner pursuant to chapter twenty-nine-a of this code.

(c) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (b) of this section, an insurer subject to this article may, with the prior approval of the commissioner, take such reserve credit as the commissioner may deem consistent with this chapter, including actuarial interpretations or standards adopted by the commissioner.

(d) A reinsurance agreement or amendment to any agreement shall not be used to reduce any liability or to establish any asset in any financial statement filed with the commissioner, unless the agreement, amendment or a letter of intent has been duly executed by both parties no later than the "as of date" of the financial statement.

(e) In the case of a letter of intent, a reinsurance agreement or an amendment to a reinsurance agreement shall be executed within a reasonable period of time, not exceeding ninety days from the execution date of the letter of intent, in order for credit to be granted for the reinsurance ceded.

(f) Life insurers subject to this section may continue to reduce liabilities or establish assets in financial statements filed with the commissioner for reinsurance ceded under types ofreinsurance agreements described in subsection (b) of this section: Provided, That:

(1) The agreements were executed and in force prior to the effective date of this section;

(2) No new business is ceded under the agreements after the effective date of this section;

(3) The reduction of the liability or the asset established for the reinsurance ceded is reduced to zero by the thirty-first day of December, one thousand nine hundred ninety-four, or such later date approved by the commissioner as a result of an application made by the ceding insurer prior to the thirty-first day of December, one thousand nine hundred ninety-two;

(4) The reduction of the liability or the establishment of the asset is otherwise permissible under all other applicable provisions of this chapter, including actuarial interpretations or standards adopted by the commissioner; and

(5) The commissioner is notified, within ninety days after the effective date of this section, of the existence of such reinsurance agreements and all corresponding credits taken in the ceding insurer's annual statement for the year one thousand nine hundred ninety-one.

(g) Accident and sickness insurers and property and casualty insurers subject to this section shall be in compliance with the requirements of this section, with respect to their accident and sickness business, pursuant to such terms and conditions as arecontained in the legislative rule to be promulgated by the commissioner.

(h) The commissioner shall promulgate a rule pursuant to chapter twenty-nine-a of this code for the implementation and administration of this section on or before the first day of July, one thousand nine hundred ninety-six.

WVC 33 - 4 - 16 §33-4-16. Limit of risk.

(a) No insurer shall retain any risk on any one subject of insurance, whether located or to be performed in West Virginia or elsewhere, in an amount exceeding ten percent of its surplus to policyholders.

(b) A "subject of insurance" for the purpose of this section, as to insurance against fire and hazards other than windstorm or earthquake, includes all properties insured by the same insurer which are customarily considered by insurers to be subject to loss or damage from the same fire or other such hazard insured against.

(c) Reinsurance in licensed or approved insurers as authorized by section fifteen of this article shall be deducted in determining risk retained. As to surety risk, deduction shall also be made of the amount assumed by any established incorporated cosurety and the value and security deposited, pledged or held subject to the surety's consent and for the surety's protection.

(d) "Surplus to policyholders" for the purpose of this section shall be deemed to include any voluntary reserves which are not required pursuant to law, and shall be determined from the last sworn statement of the insurer on file with the commissioner or by the last report of examination by the commissioner, whichever is the more recent at time of assumption of such risk.

(e) As to alien insurers this section shall apply only to risks and surplus to policyholders of the insurer's United States branch.

(f) This section shall not apply to life or accident and sickness insurance, title insurance, nor to any policy or type of coverage as to which the maximum possible loss to the insurer is not reasonably ascertainable on issuance of the policy.

WVC 33 - 4 - 17 §33-4-17. Prohibited interests of officers and directors in certain transactions.
(a) No director or officer of an insurer shall accept, except for and on behalf of the insurer, or be the beneficiary of any fee, commission, brokerage, gift or other emolument or thing of value in addition to his fixed salary or compensation, because of any investment, loan, deposit, purchase, sale, exchange, or other similar transaction made by or for the insurer, or be pecuniarily interested in any capacity except on behalf of the insurer.

(b) No insurer shall guarantee the financial obligation of any of its officers or directors.

(c) This section shall not prohibit such a director or officer from becoming a policyholder of the insurer and enjoying thereunder the rights customarily provided therein for holders of such policies, nor shall this section prohibit a director or officer of an insurer from serving as an agent or general agent of such insurer and receiving regular established agency commissions therefor: Provided, That the contract between the insurer and its officer and/or director has been approved by the board of directors of the insurer and a true copy thereof, certified to by the secretary of the board of directors of such insurer, has been filed with the commissioner of insurance; nor shall this section prohibit such a director or officer of an insurer from receiving his share of the commission earnings of a stock exchange firm of which he is a partner, or a percentage of underwriting profits under a management contract: Provided, however, That such contract is subject to review and termination by the board of directors, nor shall this section prohibit the payment to a director or officer of a fee for legal services actually rendered to any such insurer provided such compensation is not in excess of the amounts customarily charged for the same type of service; nor shall this section prohibit an officer, in connection with the relocation by the insurer of the place of employment of such officer, including any relocation in connection with the initial employment of such officer, from (i) accepting a mortgage loan made by the insurer on real property owned by such officer which is to serve as such officer's residence or (ii) selling to the insurer, at not more than the fair market value thereof, the residence of such officer.

WVC 33 - 4 - 18 §33-4-18. Representation of unlicensed insurers prohibited; liability; exceptions.
(a) No person in West Virginia shall in any manner, directly or indirectly, represent or assist any insurer not then duly licensed to transact insurance in West Virginia, in the soliciting, procuring, placing or maintenance of any insurance coverage upon or with relation to any subject of insurance resident, located, or to be performed in West Virginia, or inspect or examine any risk or collect or receive any premium on behalf of such insurer.

(b) Any person transacting insurance in violation of this section shall be personally liable to the insured for the performance of any contract between the insured and the insurer resulting from such transactions.

(c) This section shall not apply to reinsurance procured in accordance with this chapter, to excess line insurance procured pursuant to the provisions of article twelve of this chapter, to transactions exempt under the provisions of section one of article three of this chapter, or to professional services of an adjuster or attorney-at-law.

WVC 33 - 4 - 19 §33-4-19. Domestics to comply with reciprocal state laws.

No domestic insurer shall transact insurance in any "reciprocal state" in which it is not then duly and properly licensed to transact insurance.

(a) A reciprocal state, as used herein, shall mean a state which has in effect a similar prohibition against insurers domiciled in that state.

(b) This section shall not apply to:

(1) Contracts entered into where the prospective insurant is personally present in the state in which the insurer is authorized to transact insurance when they sign the application.

(2) The issuance of certificates under a lawfully transacted group life or group disability policy, where the master policy was entered into in a state in which the insurer was then authorized to transact insurance.

(3) Insurance covering persons or risks located in a reciprocal state, under contracts solicited and issued in states in which the insurer is then licensed. Nor shall it prohibit insurance effectuated by the insurer as an unauthorized insurer in accordance with the laws of the reciprocal state.

WVC 33 - 4 - 20 §33-4-20. Cancellation, nonrenewal or limitation of coverage of life or sickness and accident insurance.
(a) For purposes of this section, the following definitions shall apply:

(1) "Abuse," as used in this section, means the occurrence of one or more of the following acts between family or household members:

(A) Attempting to cause or intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing physical harm to another with or without dangerous or deadly weapons;

(B) Placing another in reasonable apprehension of physical harm;

(C) Creating fear of physical harm by harassment, psychological abuse or threatening acts;

(D) Committing either sexual assault or sexual abuse as those terms are defined in articles eight-b and eight-d, chapter sixty-one of this code;

(E) Holding, confining, detaining or abducting another person against that person's will;

(F) Intentionally or recklessly damaging, destroying or taking the tangible property of another individual;

(G) Insulting, taunting or challenging another individual or engaging in a course of alarming or distressing conduct in a manner which is likely to provoke a violent or disorderly response or which is likely to cause humiliation, degradation or fear inanother individual;

(H) Trespassing on or in the property of another individual, or on or in property from which the trespasser has been excluded by court order;

(I) Child abuse or neglect, as defined in section three, article one, chapter forty-nine of this code;

(J) Kidnapping, concealment or removal of a minor child from his or her custodian or from a person entitled to visitation, as set forth in sections fourteen through fourteen-e, article two, chapter sixty-one of this code.

(2) "Family or household member" means current or former spouses, persons living as spouses, persons who formerly resided as spouses, parents, children and stepchildren, current or former sexual or intimate partners, other persons related by blood or marriage, persons who are presently or in the past have resided or cohabited together or a person with whom the victim has a child in common.

(3) "Victim of abuse," as used in this section, means an individual who has been or is subject to abuse, including, but not limited to, an individual who seeks, has sought or should have sought medical or psychological treatment for abuse, protection from abuse or shelter from abuse.

(b) For all policies issued or renewed after the effective date of this section, no person or entity engaged in the business of providing life or health insurance, or both, in this state may:

(1) Deny, refuse to issue, refuse to renew, refuse to reissue, cancel or otherwise terminate an insurance policy or restrict coverage on any individual because that individual is, has been or may be the victim of abuse;

(2) Add any surcharge or rating factor to a premium of an insurance policy because an individual has been or may be the victim of abuse;

(3) Exclude or limit coverage for losses or deny a claim incurred because an individual has been or may be the victim of abuse; or

(4) Require as part of the application process any information regarding whether that individual has been or may be the victim of abuse.

(c) Nothing in this section may be construed to prohibit a person from declining to issue an insurance policy insuring the life of an individual who is or has been the victim of abuse if the perpetrator of abuse is the applicant or would be the owner of the insurance policy.

(d) Nothing in this section may be construed to prohibit a person from underwriting or rating a risk on the basis of a preexisting physical or mental condition, even if the condition had been caused by abuse: Provided, That:

(1) The person routinely underwrites or rates the condition in the same manner with respect to an insured or an applicant who is not a victim of abuse;

(2) The fact that an individual is, has been, or may be the victim of abuse may not be considered a physical or mental condition; and

(3) The underwriting or rating is not used to evade the intent of this law or any other provision of law. A person may not be held civilly or criminally liable for any cause of action which may be brought because of compliance with this section.

WVC 33 - 4 - 21 §33-4-21. Deceptive sales on military bases prohibited; rules.
No person in the business of insurance may engage in dishonest or predatory insurance sales practices on federal land or facilities in this state. The commissioner may promulgate emergency rules pursuant to the provisions of section fifteen, article three, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code to identify certain false, misleading, deceptive and unfair insurance sales practices as dishonest or predatory and to protect service members of the United States armed forces from these practices. To the extent permitted by federal law, the commissioner may enforce this chapter and the rules promulgated pursuant to this chapter on federal land and facilities in this state.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2014 1st Special Session
The WV Code Online is an unofficial copy of the annotated WV Code, provided as a convenience. It has NOT been edited for publication, and is not in any way official or authoritative.
This Web site is maintained by the West Virginia Legislature's Office of Reference & Information.  |  Terms of Use  |   Web Administrator   |   © 2014 West Virginia Legislature **