1997 Regular Session
By: Representatives Formby, King
House Bill 527
AN ACT TO DEFINE A GENERAL INSURANCE AGENCY; TO PROVIDE PENALTIES FOR VIOLATIONS OF THE INSURANCE LAWS OF THIS STATE BY AN INSURANCE AGENCY; TO AMEND SECTION 27-15-85, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO PROVIDE THAT ONLY ONE PRIVILEGE LICENSE IS REQUIRED FOR A GENERAL INSURANCE AGENCY THAT SOLICITS ALL LINES OF INSURANCE; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. The following section shall be codified as Section 83-17-2, Mississippi Code of 1972:
83-17-2. A general insurance agency is a domestic entity that meets the definition provided in Sections 79-4-1.40(4), 79-10-5(b), 79-14-201 or 79-29-902(b) and that is authorized to solicit all lines of insurance described in Sections 83-17-101 and 83-17-201.
SECTION 2. The following section shall be codified as Section 83-17-4, Mississippi Code of 1972:
83-17-4. (1) An insurance agency license may be refused or a license duly issued may be suspended or revoked or the renewal thereof refused by the commissioner or monetary penalties imposed if, after notice and hearing as herein provided, he finds that the applicant or licensee:
(a) Has wilfully violated any provision of the insurance laws of this state or rules, regulations or orders of the commissioner; or
(b) Has committed any act which would result in an insurance agent's license being revoked, suspended, nonrenewed or the issuance thereof denied under Section 83-17-123(1) or 83-17-221.
(2) All monetary penalties imposed under this section shall be deposited into the Special Insurance Department Fund.
(3) Before any agency license shall be refused, suspended, revoked or the renewal thereof refused or monetary penalties imposed, the commissioner shall give notice of his intention to do so, by certified mail, to the applying agency and shall set a date not less than ten (10) days from the date of mailing such notice when the applicant or licensee may appear to be heard and produce evidence in response to the notice. In the conduct of such hearing, the commissioner or any regular salaried employee specifically designated by him for such purpose shall have power to administer oaths, to require the appearance of and examine any person under oath and to require the production of books, records or papers relevant to the inquiry upon his own initiative or upon the request of the applicant or licensee. Upon the termination of such hearing, findings shall be reduced to writing and, upon approval by the commissioner or his deputy, shall be sent by certified mail to the applicant or licensee.
(4) The commissioner, in lieu of the hearing provided for herein, may file a petition to suspend or revoke any agency license issued in the chancery court of the county of the applicant or licensee or in the Chancery Court of the First Judicial District of Hinds County, Mississippi. All costs of such cause shall be paid by the applicant or licensee, if found guilty.
(5) No applicant or licensee whose license has been revoked hereunder shall file an application for license for one (1) year from the effective date of the revocation.
(6) Any applicant or licensee aggrieved by any action or decision of the Commissioner of Insurance under this section may appeal therefrom to the Chancery Court of the First Judicial District of Hinds County, Mississippi. Such appeal shall be without supersedeas and shall be by writ of certiorari, upon giving bond as approved by the chancery clerk. All costs of such cause shall be paid by the applicant or licensee if the appeal is unsuccessful.
SECTION 3. Section 27-15-85, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
27-15-85. (1) Upon each incorporated insurance agency licensed to represent only fire, casualty, liability, fidelity, surety, guaranty and inland marine insurance companies in municipalities of Classes 1, 2, 3 and 4 $100.00.
Upon each such incorporated insurance agency in municipalities of Classes 5, 6, 7 and elsewhere in the
The license issued to such incorporated agency shall specify the type, types or kinds of insurance that such incorporated agency is licensed and qualified to transact. Every person acting as agent or solicitor for any such agency shall qualify under the provisions of Sections 83-17-201 through 83-17-225; and no person shall be exempt from the privilege tax placed on insurance agents by this section by reason of the fact that he is a stockholder or officer in any such incorporated agency, or by reason of the fact that he represents such an agency, but every agent or solicitor, except two (2) executive officers of such agency, shall pay the privilege tax herein imposed.
(2) Upon each incorporated general agent, as defined in Section 83-17-203 $100.00.
(3) Upon each incorporated "supervising general agent" for life, health and accident insurers as defined in Section 83-17-101 $100.00.
(4) Upon each general insurance agency defined in Section 1, House Bill No. , 1997 Regular Session $100.00.
The privilege licenses issued under this section to "supervising general agents" shall not constitute authority to solicit business within the State of Mississippi, and shall be renewed annually at the time and in the manner prescribed by Section 83-17-25 on application forms which shall be furnished by the Commissioner of Insurance and shall show the name of the insurance company or companies such "supervising general agent" represents, and other additional information as may be required by the Commissioner of Insurance.
SECTION 4. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 1997.