Chairman says group ‘will not rest’ until resolution is found
(DeWitt, New York, Dec. 19, 2013) — Despite Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s veto of a bill dealing with certificates of insurance abuse, the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of New York today said it will not give up on the issue.
“We will continue to work with the governor’s office and the legislature to address their concerns and find a solution agreeable to all parties to secure passage of this legislation,” said IIABNY Chair of the Board Andrew Kaufman.
Certificates of insurance are one- or two-page forms that businesses commonly give other businesses or government entities for which they are doing work. These forms summarize the terms of the businesses’ insurance policies.
In recent years, insurance producers in New York and throughout the U.S. have reported increasing demands from many organizations about certificates. Organizations have insisted that producers make statements on certificates to change a policy’s terms. They often insist that certificates promise lengthy advance notice if the insurance company or the insured business cancels the policy or makes any changes. Another common demand is for guarantees of complete coverage for indemnity agreements between the organization and the insured business. Producers are also pressed to make warrantees that the policies comply with all requirements of often-complex contracts. Those who refuse to meet these demands face threats of losing their customers.
To stop the abuse of certificates, IIABNY and a coalition of other groups developed legislation sponsored by Senate Insurance Committee Chair James L. Seward (R-Milford) and Assembly Majority Leader Joseph D. Morelle (D-Irondequoit). It would have authorized only a few standard certificate forms, and prohibited:
Demands for wording that would change the policies
Requiring insurance producers to certify coverage
Using certificates as warrantees of coverage
Requiring certificates that misstate coverage
The bill passed both chambers of the New York State Legislature last June and was delivered to the governor on December 6. He vetoed it earlier this week.
In a video message to IIABNY members (click image below), Kaufman said. “Your association understands the problems you face every day with unlawful certificate requests, and we will not rest until we reach a resolution on this important issue.”
The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of New York, Inc. has represented the common business interests of independent insurance professionals since 1882. More than 1,750 agencies and their 13,000 plus employees currently rely on the DeWitt, New York-based not-for-profit trade association for legislative advocacy, continuing education and other means of industry support. In addition, most IIABNY members proudly identify themselves as Trusted Choice® agents and brokers, a national consumer brand uniting more than 21,000 independent agencies across the United States. For more information, go to www.trustedchoice.com or www.iiabny.org.