1997 Regular Session
By: Senator(s) Kirby
Senate Bill 2052
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 83-13-21, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE THE METHOD USED BY THE STATE CHIEF DEPUTY FIRE MARSHAL, THE COMMISSIONER OF INSURANCE OR ANY OTHER AUTHORIZED LAW ENFORCEMENT AUTHORITY TO RELEASE CERTAIN INFORMATION REGARDING FIRE LOSSES; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 83-13-21, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
83-13-21. (1) The State Chief Deputy Fire Marshal, the Commissioner of Insurance or any other authorized law enforcement authority charged with the responsibility of investigating a fire loss of real or personal property which may have resulted from a fire of incendiary origin may require, in writing, any insurance company insuring the loss under investigation to release any information in its possession which is pertinent to such a loss. The information shall include, but is not limited to:
(a) Any insurance policy relevant to a fire loss under investigation and any application for such a policy;
(b) Policy premium payment records;
(c) History of previous claims made by the insured for fire loss; and
(d) Material relating to the investigation of the loss, including statements of any person, proof of loss, and any other relevant information or evidence.
(2) In the absence of malice any insurance company or agent thereof who furnishes information on its behalf shall be immune from liability for damages in a civil action arising by virtue of compliance with the provisions of this section.
(3) As used in this chapter, "insurance company" shall include the Mississippi Insurance Underwriting Association.
(4) Any insurance company providing information to an authorized agency pursuant to subsection (1) of this section, or any owner, insured tenant or resident of property which is the subject of a report, shall have the right to request of such agency relevant information in accordance with Section 45-11-1.
(5) Any insurance company that willfully violates the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be fined not more than One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00) and the Commissioner of Insurance may revoke the license of such company to transact the business of insurance in this state.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 1997.