2005 Regular Session
By: Representative Moak
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 83-17-1, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE THE DEFINITION OF THE TERM AGENT AS USED IN THE LAWS REGULATING THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 83-17-1, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
83-17-1. Whenever used in this chapter, the following words shall have the meanings ascribed herein unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
(a) "Agent" means a person required to be licensed under the laws of this state to sell, solicit or negotiate insurance.
(b) "Insurance solicitor" refers to and includes any person directly connected with and principally employed by and authorized by an insurance agent to solicit and negotiate or assist in any manner in the sale and issuance of policies or contracts of insurance solely on behalf of such agents, and no license shall be renewed for any solicitor unless it is conclusively shown that more than fifty percent (50%) of his total annual employment income for the preceding year is derived from commissions on insurance. The agent appointing such solicitor shall be responsible for the acts of the solicitor. Any violation of the insurance laws by the solicitor may be grounds for revocation of license of both the agent and the solicitor after proper hearing. The commission of any unlawful act by the solicitor shall be prima facie evidence that the agent had knowledge of such act.
(c) "Inactive agent" means an individual who is retired, disabled or has not obtained from the Commissioner of Insurance a current continuous certificate. An inactive agent shall not solicit new business or service existing businesses, but may receive renewal commissions.
(d) "Supervising general agent" refers to and includes any person, partnership, association or corporation having authority to serve as trustees, managers or administrators, except attorneys at law, for such licensed insurance companies or their insureds in the handling of insurance programs underwritten by such licensed insurance companies, or in which they may be participating.
(e) "Excess risk" means all or any portion of an insurance risk or contract of annuity for which application is made to an agent and which exceeds the amount of insurance or annuity which will be provided by the insurer for which such agent is licensed.
(f) "Rejected risk" means an insurance risk or annuity contract for which application has been made to an agent and which insurance or annuity contract is declined by the insurer for which such agent is licensed.
(g) "Insurance producer" means an agent as defined under this section.
(h) "Commissioner" means the Commissioner of Insurance of the State of Mississippi.
(i) "Controlled business" means policies of insurance to be issued to a producer, agent or solicitor or to his relatives, business associates, employers or employees, or in which they or either of them have an interest. No license shall be granted or renewed to any agent or producer until the applicant files an affidavit with the Commissioner of Insurance that the applicant shall in good faith engage in the insurance business as agent, producer or solicitor, and that he is not seeking a license for the purpose of acquiring or saving commissions, premiums or other valuable considerations on "controlled business." A violation of this paragraph shall be deemed to be probable if the commissioner finds that during any twelve-month period aggregate commissions or other compensations accruing in favor of the applicant with respect to his own interests or those of his family, relatives, employers, employees or business associates, as provided herein, have exceeded or will exceed thirty-five percent (35%) of the aggregate amount of commissions accruing to him as agent or his agency during such period of time. Nothing herein contained shall prohibit the licensing under a limited license as to motor vehicle physical damage insurance, any person employed by or associated with a motor vehicle sales agency with respect to insurance on a motor vehicle sold, serviced or financed by it. Whenever employment is terminated of any such person employed by or associated with any such agency, the Commissioner of Insurance shall be notified, and the license shall be cancelled immediately. It is further provided that the provisions of this paragraph likewise shall not apply with respect to sales of insurance by a lender or its affiliate covering the insurable interest of the lender.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2005.