Maryland Manual On-Line - www.mdmanual.net

MARYLAND INSURANCE ADMINISTRATION

ORIGIN & FUNCTIONS


[photo, St. Paul Plaza, 200 St. Paul Place, Baltimore, Maryland] The Maryland Insurance Administration began in 1872 as the Insurance Department under the Comptroller of the Treasury (Chapter 388, Acts of 1872). Renamed the State Insurance Department, it became an independent agency in 1878 (Chapter 106, Acts of 1878). As the Insurance Division, it moved to the Department of Licensing and Regulation in 1970 (Chapter 402, Acts of 1970). It was reorganized as the Maryland Insurance Administration, an independent agency, in 1993 (Chapter 538, Acts of 1993).

St. Paul Plaza, 200 St. Paul Place, Baltimore, Maryland, January 2001. Photo by Diane F. Evartt.


Periodically, the Administration examines all companies organized under the laws of Maryland and scrutinizes nonresident companies doing business in the State. The Administration also investigates consumer complaints and questions concerning insurance companies operating in Maryland, and resolves insurance appeals and grievances concerning coverage decisions or claims denials.

MARYLAND INSURANCE COMMISSIONER

The Administration is directed by the Maryland Insurance Commissioner who ensures that all insurance laws of the State are faithfully executed, and counsels and advises the Governor on all matters assigned to the Administration. The Commissioner authorizes and licenses insurance companies, producers, adjusters, and advisors for fire, casualty, life, accident, health, title, bail bonds, and other insurance and annuities. The Commissioner also approves all insurance policies offered for sale in Maryland by authorized companies, authorizes rating bureaus and advisory organizations, and approves or rejects the rates for most lines of insurance.

The Maryland Insurance Commissioner is appointed to a four-year term by the Governor with Senate advice and consent. Subject to the Governor's approval, the Commissioner appoints the Deputy Commissioner (Code Insurance Article, secs. 2-101 through 2-408).

Under the Commissioner, the Administration is organized into seven sections: Administration; Compliance and Enforcement; Consumer Education and Advocacy; Examination and Auditing; Insurance Fraud Division; Life and Health; and Property and Casualty.


ADMINISTRATION

Formed in 2001, Administration consist of three units: Fiscal Services; Human Resources; and Producer Licensing.

HUMAN RESOURCES
Human Resources started as Professional and Consumer Services and adopted its present name in 2000. The office conducts administrative services, including personnel management, training, and facility support services.

PRODUCER LICENSING
Created as Licensing in 1997, Producer Licensing was renamed in 2001. The Office licenses insurance producers and other professionals (including bail bondsmen), and reviews and approves continuing education courses. The office conducts background investigations of applicants for agent and broker certificates of qualification, as well as of officers, directors and major stockholders of insurance companies licensed in Maryland. The office also verifies that agents and brokers meet continuing education requirements. For Maryland residents applying for licenses in other states, Licensing issues letters of certification or clearance.


COMPLIANCE & ENFORCEMENT SECTION

The Compliance and Enforcement Section was formed in 2002 when the Agent Enforcement and Market Conduct Examination units of the Life and Health Section merged with those of the Property and Casualty Section.

The Section oversees the regulation of insurance companies in Maryland, insurance producers, title agents, public adjusters, and issuers of bail bonds. It conducts general and target market-conduct examinations, which include a review of sales practices, advertising and materials, underwriting practices, and claims handling practices. The Section also investigates insurance producers and other unauthorized entities for compliance with insurance laws and regulations.


CONSUMER EDUCATION & ADVOCACY SECTION

Origins of the Consumer Education and Advocacy Section trace to September 1997, when the Inquiry and Investigation units of the Life and Health Section and the Property and Casualty Section merged to form the Consumer Complaint Investigation Section. The Section received its present name in September 2004.

The Section investigates and resolves complaints made by insurance policyholders, claimants, beneficiaries, and providers of health care. It also provides insurance information to the public.


EXAMINATION & AUDITING SECTION

The Examination and Auditing Section licenses all insurance companies conducting business in Maryland. It conducts financial analyses and examinations of licensed insurers as often as the Commissioner deems advisable, but at least every five years. In addition, the Section performs audits of the annual statements and quarterly and annual premium tax reports of insurers.

Under the Section are Company Licensing, Financial Analysis, Financial Examination, and Premium Tax.


INSURANCE FRAUD DIVISION

The Insurance Fraud Division was established as a unit within the Department of Licensing and Regulation in 1992 by the Governor (Executive Order 01.01.1992.24). The unit transferred to the Office of the Governor in 1993 (Chapter 538, Acts of 1993; Executive Order 01.01.1994.16). In July 1995, the unit became part of the Maryland Insurance Administration.

In cooperation with the Department of State Police and the Office of the Attorney General, the Division investigates and prosecutes individuals and companies who commit insurance fraud. In addition, the Division reviews anti-fraud plans and annual fraud statistics submitted by insurance companies.


LIFE & HEALTH SECTION

The Life and Health Section reviews the life, health and dental insurance policies used by Maryland insurance providers. The Section also reviews each annuity contract and each health maintenance organization (HMO) subscriber and provider contract used in Maryland. To ensure that premium rates are not excessive, inadequate, or discriminatory, the Section reviews initial rate filings by insurers.

Under the Section are three units: Life and Health Complaints; Managed Care; and Medical Director and Private Review Agent Oversight.


PROPERTY & CASUALTY SECTION

The Property and Casualty Section reviews policy forms for property, casualty, surety, mortgage guaranty and title insurance used in Maryland. The Section reviews rate filings to ensure the fairness of premium rates. The Section also reviews nonfinancial activities of property and casualty insurers.

The Section oversees three units: Property and Casualty Complaints; Property and Casualty Rates; and Rates and Forms Review.

Maryland Constitutional Offices & Agencies
Maryland Departments
Maryland Independent Agencies
Maryland Executive Commissions, Committees, Task Forces, & Advisory Boards
Maryland Universities & Colleges
Maryland Counties
Maryland Municipalities
Maryland at a Glance


Maryland Manual On-Line

Search the Manual
e-mail: mdmanual@mdarchives.state.md.us

 Maryland Manual On-Line, 2009

July 1, 2009   
Note: In this past edition of Maryland Manual, some links are to external sites.  View the current Manual

The use of any username and password on our site is for personal and educational purposes only, and constitutes agreement to abide by any and all copyright restrictions. In most instances the username aaco and password aaco# will work. Contact ref@mdsa.net if you have any questions or have difficulty accessing files.


Tell Us What You Think About the Maryland State Archives Website!


[ Archives' Home Page  ||  All About Maryland  ||  Maryland Manual On-Line  ||  Reference & Research
||  Search the Archives   ||  Education & Outreach  ||  Archives of Maryland Online ]

Governor     General Assembly    Judiciary     Maryland.Gov

Copyright June 26, 2009 Maryland State Archives