HOUSE BILL No. 5706

 

May 31, 2012, Introduced by Reps. Cotter, Horn, Heise, Somerville, Ananich, Yonker, Johnson, Kowall, Callton, Olson, MacGregor, Damrow and Hughes and referred to the Committee on Insurance.

 

     A bill to amend 1956 PA 218, entitled

 

"The insurance code of 1956,"

 

by amending sections 3020 and 3104 (MCL 500.3020 and 500.3104),

 

section 3020 as amended by 2006 PA 106 and section 3104 as amended

 

by 2002 PA 662.

 

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF MICHIGAN ENACT:

 

     Sec. 3020. (1) A policy of casualty insurance, except worker's

 

compensation and mortgage guaranty insurance, including all classes

 

of motor vehicle coverage, shall not be issued or delivered in this

 

state by an insurer authorized to do business in this state for

 

which a premium or advance assessment is charged, unless the policy

 

contains the following provisions:

 

     (a) That the policy may be canceled at any time at the request

 

of the insured, in which case the insurer shall refund the excess

 


of paid premium or assessment above the pro rata rates for the

 

expired time, except as otherwise provided in subsections (2), (3),

 

and (4), and (8).

 

     (b) Except as otherwise provided in subdivision (d), that the

 

policy may be canceled at any time by the insurer by mailing to the

 

insured at the insured's address last known to the insurer or an

 

authorized agent of the insurer, with postage fully prepaid, a not

 

less than 10 days' written notice of cancellation with or without

 

tender of the excess of paid premium or assessment above the pro

 

rata premium for the expired time.

 

     (c) That the minimum earned premium on any policy canceled

 

pursuant to under this subsection, other than automobile insurance

 

as defined in section 2102(2)(a) and (b), shall not be less than

 

the pro rata premium for the expired time or $25.00, whichever is

 

greater.

 

     (d) That an insurer may refuse to renew a malpractice

 

insurance policy only by mailing to the insured at the insured's

 

address last known to the insurer or an authorized agent of the

 

insurer, with postage fully prepaid, a not less than 60 days'

 

written notice of refusal to renew. As used in this subdivision,

 

"malpractice insurance" means malpractice insurance as described in

 

section 624(1)(h).

 

     (2) An insurer may file a rule with the commissioner providing

 

for a minimum retention of premium for automobile insurance as

 

defined in section 2102(2)(a) and (b). The rule shall describe the

 

circumstances under which the retention is applied and shall set

 

forth the amount to be retained, which is subject to the approval

 


of the commissioner. The rule shall include, but need not be

 

limited to, the following provisions:

 

     (a) That a minimum retention shall be applied only when the

 

amount exceeds the amount that would have been retained had the

 

policy been canceled on a pro rata basis.

 

     (b) That a minimum retention does not apply to renewal

 

policies.

 

     (c) That a minimum retention does not apply when a policy is

 

canceled for the following reasons:

 

     (i) The insured is no longer required to maintain security

 

pursuant to under section 3101(1).

 

     (ii) The insured has replaced the automobile insurance policy

 

being canceled with an automobile insurance policy from another

 

insurer and provides proof of the replacement coverage to the

 

canceling insurer.

 

     (3) Notwithstanding subsection (1), an insurer may issue a

 

noncancelable, nonrefundable, 6-month prepaid automobile insurance

 

policy in order for an insured to meet the registration

 

requirements of section 227a of the Michigan vehicle code, 1949 PA

 

300, MCL 257.227a.

 

     (4) An insurer may provide for a short rate premium for

 

insurance on a motorcycle, watercraft, off-road vehicle, or

 

snowmobile. As used in this subsection:

 

     (a) "Motorcycle" means that term as defined in section 3101.

 

     (b) "Off-road vehicle" means an ORV as defined in section

 

81101 of the natural resources and environmental protection act,

 

1994 PA 451, MCL 324.81101.

 


     (c) "Snowmobile" means that term as defined in section 82101

 

of the natural resources and environmental protection act, 1994 PA

 

451, MCL 324.82101.

 

     (d) "Watercraft" means that term as defined in section 80301

 

of the natural resources and environmental protection act, 1994 PA

 

451, MCL 324.80301.

 

     (5) Cancellation as prescribed in this section is without

 

prejudice to any claim originating before the cancellation. The

 

mailing of notice is prima facie proof of notice. Delivery of

 

written notice is equivalent to mailing.

 

     (6) A notice of cancellation, including a cancellation notice

 

under section 3224, shall be accompanied by a statement that the

 

insured shall not operate or permit the operation of the vehicle to

 

which notice of cancellation is applicable, or operate any other

 

vehicle, unless the vehicle is insured as required by law.

 

     (7) An insurer who wishes to provide for a short rate premium

 

under subsection (4) shall file with the commissioner pursuant to

 

chapter 24 or 26 a rule establishing a short rate premium. The rule

 

shall describe the circumstances under which the short rate is

 

applied and shall set forth the amount or percentage to be

 

retained.

 

     (8) The portion of a paid premium that reflects an assessment

 

of the catastrophic claims association under section 3104 shall not

 

be refunded to the insured on cancellation of the policy to which

 

the premium applies.

 

     Sec. 3104. (1) An unincorporated, nonprofit association to be

 

known as the catastrophic claims association , hereinafter referred

 


to as the association, is created. Each insurer engaged in writing

 

insurance coverages that provide the security required by section

 

3101(1) within this state, as a condition of its authority to

 

transact insurance in this state, shall be a member of the

 

association and shall be bound by the plan of operation of the

 

association. Each insurer engaged in writing insurance coverages

 

that provide the security required by section 3103(1) within this

 

state, as a condition of its authority to transact insurance in

 

this state, shall be considered a member of the association, but

 

only for purposes of premiums under subsection (7)(d). Except as

 

expressly provided in this section, the association is not subject

 

to any laws of this state with respect to insurers, but in all

 

other respects the association is subject to the laws of this state

 

to the extent that the association would be if it were an insurer

 

organized and subsisting under chapter 50.

 

     (2) The association shall provide and each member shall accept

 

indemnification for 100% of the amount of ultimate loss sustained

 

under personal protection insurance coverages in excess of the

 

following amounts in each loss occurrence:

 

     (a) For a motor vehicle accident policy issued or renewed

 

before July 1, 2002, $250,000.00.

 

     (b) For a motor vehicle accident policy issued or renewed

 

during the period July 1, 2002 to June 30, 2003, $300,000.00.

 

     (c) For a motor vehicle accident policy issued or renewed

 

during the period July 1, 2003 to June 30, 2004, $325,000.00.

 

     (d) For a motor vehicle accident policy issued or renewed

 

during the period July 1, 2004 to June 30, 2005, $350,000.00.

 


     (e) For a motor vehicle accident policy issued or renewed

 

during the period July 1, 2005 to June 30, 2006, $375,000.00.

 

     (f) For a motor vehicle accident policy issued or renewed

 

during the period July 1, 2006 to June 30, 2007, $400,000.00.

 

     (g) For a motor vehicle accident policy issued or renewed

 

during the period July 1, 2007 to June 30, 2008, $420,000.00.

 

     (h) For a motor vehicle accident policy issued or renewed

 

during the period July 1, 2008 to June 30, 2009, $440,000.00.

 

     (i) For a motor vehicle accident policy issued or renewed

 

during the period July 1, 2009 to June 30, 2010, $460,000.00.

 

     (j) For a motor vehicle accident policy issued or renewed

 

during the period July 1, 2010 to June 30, 2011, $480,000.00.

 

     (k) For a motor vehicle accident policy issued or renewed

 

during the period July 1, 2011 to June 30, 2013, $500,000.00.

 

Beginning July 1, 2013, this $500,000.00 amount shall be increased

 

biennially on July 1 of each odd-numbered year, for policies issued

 

or renewed before July 1 of the following odd-numbered year, by the

 

lesser of 6% or the consumer price index, and rounded to the

 

nearest $5,000.00. This biennial adjustment shall be calculated by

 

the association by January 1 of the year of its July 1 effective

 

date.

 

     (3) An insurer may withdraw from the association only upon

 

ceasing to write insurance that provides the security required by

 

section 3101(1) in this state.

 

     (4) An insurer whose membership in the association has been

 

terminated by withdrawal shall continue to be bound by the plan of

 

operation, and upon withdrawal, all unpaid premiums that have been

 


charged to the withdrawing member are payable as of the effective

 

date of the withdrawal.

 

     (5) An unsatisfied net liability to the association of an

 

insolvent member shall be assumed by and apportioned among the

 

remaining members of the association as provided in the plan of

 

operation. The association has all rights allowed by law on behalf

 

of the remaining members against the estate or funds of the

 

insolvent member for sums money due to the association.

 

     (6) If a member has been merged or consolidated into another

 

insurer or another insurer has reinsured a member's entire business

 

that provides the security required by section 3101(1) in this

 

state, the member and successors in interest of the member remain

 

liable for the member's obligations.

 

     (7) The association shall do all of the following on behalf of

 

the members of the association:

 

     (a) Assume 100% of all liability as provided in subsection

 

(2).

 

     (b) Establish procedures by which members shall promptly

 

report to the association each claim that, on the basis of the

 

injuries or damages sustained, may reasonably be anticipated to

 

involve the association if the member is ultimately held legally

 

liable for the injuries or damages. Solely for the purpose of

 

reporting claims, the member shall in all instances consider itself

 

legally liable for the injuries or damages. The member shall also

 

advise the association of subsequent developments likely to

 

materially affect the interest of the association in the claim.

 

     (c) Maintain relevant loss and expense data relative to all

 


liabilities of the association and require each member to furnish

 

statistics, in connection with liabilities of the association, at

 

the times and in the form and detail as may be required by the plan

 

of operation.

 

     (d) In a manner provided for in the plan of operation,

 

calculate and charge to members of the association a total premium

 

sufficient to cover the expected losses and expenses of the

 

association that the association will likely incur during the

 

period for which the premium is applicable. The premium shall

 

include an amount to cover incurred but not reported losses for the

 

period and may be adjusted for any excess or deficient premiums

 

from previous periods. Excesses or deficiencies from previous

 

periods may be fully adjusted in a single period or may be adjusted

 

over several periods in a manner provided for in the plan of

 

operation. Each member shall be charged an amount equal to that

 

member's total written car years of insurance providing the

 

security required by section 3101(1) or 3103(1), or both, written

 

in this state during the period to which the premium applies,

 

multiplied by the average premium per car. The average premium per

 

car shall be the total premium calculated divided by the total

 

written car years of insurance providing the security required by

 

section 3101(1) or 3103(1) written in this state of all members

 

during the period to which the premium applies. A member shall be

 

charged a premium for a historic vehicle that is insured with the

 

member of 20% of the premium charged for a car insured with the

 

member. As used in this subdivision:

 

     (i) "Car" includes a motorcycle but does not include a historic

 


vehicle.

 

     (ii) "Historic vehicle" means a vehicle that is a registered

 

historic vehicle under section 803a or 803p of the Michigan vehicle

 

code, 1949 PA 300, MCL 257.803a and 257.803p.

 

     (e) Require and accept the payment of premiums from members of

 

the association as provided for in the plan of operation. The

 

association shall do either of the following:

 

     (i) Require payment of the premium in full within 45 days after

 

the premium charge.

 

     (ii) Require payment of the premiums to be made periodically to

 

cover the actual cash obligations of the association.

 

     (f) Receive and distribute all sums money required by the

 

operation of the association.

 

     (g) Establish procedures for reviewing claims procedures and

 

practices of members of the association. If the claims procedures

 

or practices of a member are considered inadequate to properly

 

service the liabilities of the association, the association may

 

undertake or may contract with another person, including another

 

member, to adjust or assist in the adjustment of claims for the

 

member on claims that create a potential liability to the

 

association and may charge the cost of the adjustment to the

 

member.

 

     (8) In addition to other powers granted to it by this section,

 

the association may do all of the following:

 

     (a) Sue and be sued in the name of the association. A judgment

 

against the association shall not create any direct liability

 

against the individual members of the association. The association

 


may provide for the indemnification of its members, members of the

 

board of directors of the association, and officers, employees, and

 

other persons lawfully acting on behalf of the association.

 

     (b) Reinsure all or any portion of its potential liability

 

with reinsurers licensed to transact insurance in this state or

 

approved by the commissioner.

 

     (c) Provide for appropriate housing, equipment, and personnel

 

as may be necessary to assure the efficient operation of the

 

association.

 

     (d) Pursuant to the plan of operation, adopt reasonable rules

 

for the administration of the association, enforce those rules, and

 

delegate authority, as the board considers necessary to assure the

 

proper administration and operation of the association consistent

 

with the plan of operation.

 

     (e) Contract for goods and services, including independent

 

claims management, actuarial, investment, and legal services, from

 

others within or without this state to assure the efficient

 

operation of the association.

 

     (f) Hear and determine complaints of a company or other

 

interested party concerning the operation of the association.

 

     (g) Perform other acts not specifically enumerated in this

 

section that are necessary or proper to accomplish the purposes of

 

the association and that are not inconsistent with this section or

 

the plan of operation.

 

     (9) A board of directors is created , hereinafter referred to

 

as the board, which shall be that is responsible for the operation

 

of the association consistent with the plan of operation and this

 


section.

 

     (10) The plan of operation shall provide for all of the

 

following:

 

     (a) The establishment of necessary facilities.

 

     (b) The management and operation of the association.

 

     (c) Procedures to be utilized in charging premiums, including

 

adjustments from excess or deficient premiums from prior periods.

 

     (d) Procedures governing the actual payment of premiums to the

 

association.

 

     (e) Reimbursement of each member of the board by the

 

association for actual and necessary expenses incurred on

 

association business.

 

     (f) The investment policy of the association.

 

     (g) Any other matters required by or necessary to effectively

 

implement this section.

 

     (11) Each board shall include members that would contribute a

 

total of not less than 40% of the total premium calculated pursuant

 

to subsection (7)(d). Each director shall be is entitled to 1 vote.

 

The initial term of office of a director shall be is 2 years.

 

     (12) As part of the plan of operation, the board shall adopt

 

rules providing for the composition and term of successor boards to

 

the initial board, consistent with the membership composition

 

requirements in subsections (11) and (13). Terms of the directors

 

shall be staggered so that the terms of all the directors do not

 

expire at the same time and so that a director does not serve a

 

term of more than 4 years.

 

     (13) The board shall consist of 5 directors, and the

 


commissioner shall be an ex officio member of the board without

 

vote.

 

     (14) Each director shall be appointed by the commissioner and

 

shall serve until that member's successor is selected and

 

qualified. The chairperson of the board shall be elected by the

 

board. A vacancy on the board shall be filled by the commissioner

 

consistent with the plan of operation.

 

     (15) After the board is appointed, the board shall meet as

 

often as the chairperson, the commissioner, or the plan of

 

operation shall require, or at the request of any 3 members of the

 

board. The chairperson shall retain the right to vote on all

 

issues. Four members of the board constitute a quorum.

 

     (16) An annual report of the operations of the association in

 

a form and detail as may be determined by the board shall be

 

furnished to each member.

 

     (17) Not more than 60 days after the initial organizational

 

meeting of the board, the board shall submit to the commissioner

 

for approval a proposed plan of operation consistent with the

 

objectives and provisions of this section, which shall provide for

 

the economical, fair, and nondiscriminatory administration of the

 

association and for the prompt and efficient provision of

 

indemnity. If a plan is not submitted within this 60-day period,

 

then the commissioner, after consultation with the board, shall

 

formulate and place into effect a plan consistent with this

 

section.

 

     (18) The plan of operation, unless approved sooner in writing,

 

shall be considered to meet the requirements of this section if it

 


is not disapproved by written order of the commissioner within 30

 

days after the date of its submission. Before disapproval of all or

 

any part of the proposed plan of operation, the commissioner shall

 

notify the board in what respect the plan of operation fails to

 

meet the requirements and objectives of this section. If the board

 

fails to submit a revised plan of operation that meets the

 

requirements and objectives of this section within the 30-day

 

period, the commissioner shall enter an order accordingly and shall

 

immediately formulate and place into effect a plan consistent with

 

the requirements and objectives of this section.

 

     (19) The proposed plan of operation or amendments to the plan

 

of operation are subject to majority approval by the board,

 

ratified by a majority of the membership having a vote, with voting

 

rights being apportioned according to the premiums charged in

 

subsection (7)(d) and are subject to approval by the commissioner.

 

     (20) Upon approval by the commissioner and ratification by the

 

members of the plan submitted, or upon the promulgation of a plan

 

by the commissioner, each insurer authorized to write insurance

 

providing the security required by section 3101(1) in this state,

 

as provided in this section, is bound by and shall formally

 

subscribe to and participate in the plan approved as a condition of

 

maintaining its authority to transact insurance in this state.

 

     (21) The association is subject to all the reporting, loss

 

reserve, and investment requirements of the commissioner to the

 

same extent as would is a member of the association.

 

     (22) Premiums charged members by the association shall be

 

recognized in the rate-making procedures for insurance rates in the

 


same manner that expenses and premium taxes are recognized.

 

However, all of the following apply to the portion of a premium

 

charged to an insured that reflects an amount for a premium charged

 

to a member by the association:

 

     (a) The entire portion shall be included in the first billing

 

provided to the insured under a new or renewed policy.

 

     (b) The insurer shall not allow the portion to be paid in

 

installments or financed.

 

     (c) After payment, the portion shall not be refunded on

 

cancellation of the policy.

 

     (d) The insurer shall pay the portion to the association.

 

     (23) The commissioner or an authorized representative of the

 

commissioner may visit the association at any time and examine any

 

and all the association's affairs.

 

     (24) The association does not have liability for losses

 

occurring before July 1, 1978.

 

     (25) As used in this section:

 

     (a) "Association" means the catastrophic claims association

 

created in subsection (1).

 

     (b) "Board" means the board of directors created in subsection

 

(9).

 

     (c) (a) "Consumer price index" means the percentage of change

 

in the consumer price index for all urban consumers in the United

 

States city average for all items for the 24 months prior to

 

October 1 of the year prior to the July 1 effective date of the

 

biennial adjustment under subsection (2)(k) as reported by the

 

United States department of labor, bureau of labor statistics, and

 


as certified by the commissioner.

 

     (d) (b) "Motor vehicle accident policy" means a policy

 

providing the coverages required under section 3101(1).

 

     (e) (c) "Ultimate loss" means the actual loss amounts that a

 

member is obligated to pay and that are paid or payable by the

 

member, and do not include claim expenses. An ultimate loss is

 

incurred by the association on the date that the loss occurs.