Nebraska Revised Statute 44-2707

Chapter 44

44-2707.

Association; powers and duties; enumerated.

In addition to the powers and duties enumerated in the Nebraska Life and Health Insurance Guaranty Association Act:

(1) If a member insurer is an impaired insurer, the association may, at its discretion and subject to any conditions imposed by the association that do not impair the contractual obligations of the impaired insurer and that are approved by the director:

(a) Guarantee, assume, reissue, or reinsure, or cause to be guaranteed, assumed, reissued, or reinsured, any or all the covered policies or contracts of the impaired insurer; and

(b) Provide such money, pledges, loans, notes, guarantees, or other means as are proper to effectuate subdivision (1)(a) of this section and assure payment of the contractual obligations of the impaired insurer pending action under subdivision (1)(a) of this section;

(2) If a member insurer is an insolvent insurer, the association shall, in its discretion, either:

(a)(i)(A) Guarantee, assume, reissue, or reinsure, or cause to be guaranteed, assumed, reissued, or reinsured, the covered policies or contracts of the insolvent insurer; or

(B) Assure payment of the contractual obligations of the insolvent insurer; and

(ii) Provide such money, pledges, notes, guarantees, or other means as are reasonably necessary to discharge the association's duties; or

(b) Provide benefits in accordance with the following provisions:

(i) With respect to covered policies and contracts, assure payment of benefits that would have been payable under the policies or contracts of the insolvent insurer for claims incurred:

(A) With respect to group policies and contracts, not later than the earlier of the next renewal date under these policies or contracts or forty-five days but not less than thirty days after the date on which the association becomes obligated with respect to the policies and contracts; and

(B) With respect to nongroup policies, contracts, and annuities, not later than the earlier of the next renewal date if any under the policies or contracts or one year but not less than thirty days after the date on which the association becomes obligated with respect to the policies or contracts;

(ii) Make diligent efforts to provide all known insureds, enrollees, or annuitants, for nongroup policies and contracts, or group policy or contract owners with respect to group policies and contracts, thirty days' notice of the termination made pursuant to subdivision (2)(b)(i) of this section of the benefits provided;

(iii) With respect to nongroup policies and contracts covered by the association, make available to each known insured, enrollee, or annuitant, or owner if other than the insured or annuitant, and with respect to an individual formerly insured, enrolled, or an annuitant under a group policy who is not eligible for replacement group coverage, make available substitute coverage on an individual basis in accordance with the provisions of subdivision (2)(b)(iv) of this section if the insureds, enrollees, or annuitants had a right under law or the terminated policy, contract, or annuity to convert coverage to individual coverage or to continue an individual policy, contract, or annuity in force until a specified age or for a specified time, during which the insurer or health maintenance organization had no right unilaterally to make changes in any provision of the policy, contract, or annuity or had a right only to make changes in premium by class;

(iv)(A) In providing the substitute coverage required under subdivision (2)(b)(iii) of this section, the association may offer either to reissue the terminated coverage or to issue an alternative policy or contract at actuarially justified rates, subject to the prior approval of the director.

(B) Alternative or reissued policies or contracts shall be offered without requiring evidence of insurability and shall not provide for any waiting period or exclusion that would not have applied under the terminated policy or contract.

(C) The association may reinsure any alternative or reissued policy or contract;

(v)(A) Alternative policies or contracts adopted by the association shall be subject to the approval of the director. The association may adopt alternative policies or contracts of various types for future issuance without regard to any particular impairment or insolvency.

(B) Alternative policies or contracts shall contain at least the minimum statutory provisions required in this state and provide benefits that shall not be unreasonable in relation to the premium charged. The association shall set the premium in accordance with a table of rates that it shall adopt. The premium shall reflect the amount of insurance to be provided and the age and class of risk of each insured but shall not reflect any changes in the health of the insured after the original policy was last underwritten.

(C) Any alternative policy or contract issued by the association shall provide coverage of a type similar to that of the policy issued by the impaired or insolvent insurer, as determined by the association;

(vi) If the association elects to reissue terminated coverage at a premium rate different from that charged under the terminated policy, the premium shall be actuarially justified and set by the association in accordance with the amount of insurance provided and the age and class of risk, subject to approval of the director;

(vii) The association's obligations with respect to coverage under any policy or contract of the impaired or insolvent insurer or under any reissued or alternative policy or contract shall cease on the date the coverage or policy or contract is replaced by another similar policy or contract by the policy owner, the insured, the enrollee, or the association; and

(viii) When proceeding under subdivision (2)(b) of this section with respect to a policy or contract carrying guaranteed minimum interest rates, the association shall assure the payment or crediting of a rate of interest consistent with subdivision (2)(b)(iii) of section 44-2703;

(3) Nonpayment of premiums within thirty-one days after the date required under the terms of any guaranteed, assumed, alternative, or reissued policy or contract or substitute coverage terminates the association's obligations under the policy or coverage under the act with respect to the policy or coverage, except with respect to any claims incurred or any net cash surrender value which may be due in accordance with the provisions of the act;

(4) Premiums due for coverage after entry of an order of liquidation of an insolvent insurer shall belong to and be payable at the direction of the association. If the liquidator of the insolvent insurer requests, the association shall provide a report to the liquidator regarding such premiums collected by the association. The association shall be liable for unearned premiums due to policy or contract owners arising after the entry of the order;

(5) The protection provided by the act shall not apply if guaranty protection is provided to residents of this state by the laws of the domiciliary state or jurisdiction of the impaired or insolvent insurer other than this state;

(6) In carrying out its duties under subdivision (2) of this section, the association may, subject to approval by a court in this state:

(a) Impose permanent policy or contract liens in connection with a guarantee, assumption, or reinsurance agreement if:

(i) The association finds that the amounts which can be assessed under the act are less than the amounts needed to assure full and prompt performance of the association's duties under the act; or

(ii) That the economic or financial conditions as they affect member insurers are sufficiently adverse to render the imposition of such permanent policy or contract liens, to be in the public interest; and

(b) Impose temporary moratoriums or liens on payments of cash values and policy loans or any other right to withdraw funds held in conjunction with policies or contracts in addition to any contractual provisions for deferral of cash or policy loan value.

If the receivership court imposes a temporary moratorium or moratorium charge on payment of cash values or policy loans or on any other right to withdraw funds held in conjunction with policies or contracts out of the assets of the impaired or insolvent insurer, the association may defer the payment of cash values, policy loans, or other rights by the association for the period of the moratorium or moratorium charge imposed by the receivership court, except for claims covered by the association to be paid in accordance with a hardship procedure established by the liquidator or rehabilitator and approved by the receivership court;

(7) A deposit in this state which is held pursuant to law or required by the director for the benefit of creditors, including policy and contract owners, and not turned over to the domiciliary liquidator upon the entry of a final order of liquidation or order approving a rehabilitation plan of an insurer domiciled in this state or in a reciprocal state, pursuant to section 44-4852, shall be promptly paid to the association. The association shall be entitled to retain a portion of such amount equal to the percentage determined by dividing the aggregate amount of policy or contract owners' claims related to that insolvency for which the association has provided statutory benefits by the aggregate amount of all policy or contract owners' claims in this state related to that insolvency. The association shall remit to the domiciliary receiver the amount so paid to the association and not retained pursuant to this subdivision. Any amount paid to the association less the amount not retained by it shall be treated as a distribution of estate assets pursuant to section 44-4834 or similar provision of the state of domicile of the impaired or insolvent insurer;

(8) If the association fails to act within a reasonable period of time with respect to an insolvent insurer, as provided in subdivision (2) of this section, the director shall have the powers and duties of the association under the act with respect to the insolvent insurer;

(9) At the request of the director, the association may give assistance and advice to the director concerning rehabilitation, payment of claims, continuance of coverage, or the performance of other contractual obligations of an impaired or insolvent insurer;

(10) The association shall have standing to appear before any court or administrative agency in this state with jurisdiction over an impaired or insolvent insurer concerning which the association is or may become obligated under the act or with jurisdiction over any person or property against which the association may have rights through subrogation or other basis. Such standing shall extend to all matters germane to the powers and duties of the association, including, but not limited to, proposals for reinsuring, reissuing, modifying, or guaranteeing the policies or contracts and contractual obligations of the impaired or insolvent insurer and the determination of the covered policies and contractual obligations. The association shall also have the right to appear or intervene before a court or agency in another state with jurisdiction over an impaired or insolvent insurer for which the association is or may become obligated or with jurisdiction over any person against whom the association may have rights through subrogation or otherwise;

(11)(a) Any person receiving benefits under the act shall be deemed to have assigned his or her rights under and any causes of action against any person for losses arising under the covered policy or contract to the association to the extent of the benefits received because of the act whether the benefits are payments of, or on account of, contractual obligations, continuation of coverage, or provision of substitute or alternative policies, contracts, or coverages. The association may require an assignment to it of such rights by any enrollee, payee, policy or contract owner, certificate holder, beneficiary, insured, or annuitant as a condition precedent to the receipt of any rights or benefits conferred by such act upon such person.

(b) The subrogation rights of the association under this subdivision shall have the same priority against the assets of the impaired or insolvent insurer as that possessed by the person entitled to receive benefits under such act.

(c) In addition to subdivisions (11)(a) and (b) of this section, the association shall have all common-law rights of subrogation and any other equitable or legal remedy that would have been available to the impaired or insolvent insurer or owner, beneficiary, enrollee, or payee of a policy or contract with respect to the policy or contracts. Such common-law rights and equitable or legal remedies include, in the case of a structured settlement annuity, any rights of the owner, beneficiary, or payee of the annuity, to the extent of benefits received pursuant to the act, against a person originally or by succession responsible for the losses arising from the personal injury relating to the annuity or payment therefor. Nothing in this subdivision shall include any such person responsible solely by reason of serving as an assignee in respect of a qualified assignment under section 130 of the Internal Revenue Code.

(d) If the provisions of this subdivision are invalid or ineffective with respect to any person or claim for any reason, the amount payable by the association with respect to the related covered obligations shall be reduced by the amount realized by any other person with respect to the person or claim that is attributable to the policies or contracts or portion of such amount covered by the association.

(e) If the association has provided benefits with respect to a covered obligation and a person recovers amounts as to which the association has rights as described in subdivision (11) of this section, the person shall pay to the association the portion of the recovery attributable to the policies or contracts or any portion of such recovery covered by the association;

(12) The association may:

(a) Enter into such contracts as are necessary or proper to carry out the provisions and purposes of the act;

(b) Sue or be sued, including taking any legal actions necessary or proper for recovery of any unpaid assessments under section 44-2708 and to settle claims or potential claims against it;

(c) Borrow money to effect the purposes of the act. Any notes or other evidence of indebtedness of the association not in default shall be legal investments for domestic insurers and may be carried as admitted assets;

(d) Employ or retain such persons as are necessary or appropriate to handle the financial transactions of the association and to perform such other functions as become necessary or proper under the act;

(e) Negotiate and contract with any liquidator, rehabilitator, conservator, or ancillary receiver to carry out the powers and duties of the association;

(f) Take such legal action as may be necessary to avoid or recover payment of improper claims;

(g) Exercise, for the purposes of the act and to the extent approved by the director, the powers of a domestic life or health insurer or health maintenance organization, but in no case may the association issue insurance policies or contracts other than those issued to perform its obligations under the act;

(h) Organize itself as a corporation or in other legal form permitted by the laws of the state;

(i) Request information from a person seeking coverage from the association in order to aid the association in determining its obligations under the act with respect to the person, and the person shall promptly comply with the request;

(j) Unless prohibited by law, in accordance with the terms and conditions of the policy or contract, file for actuarially justified rate or premium increases for any policy or contract for which it provides coverage under the act;

(k) Take other necessary or appropriate action to discharge its duties and obligations under the act or to exercise its powers under the act; and

(l) Join an organization of one or more other state associations of similar purposes to further the purposes and administer the powers and duties of the association;

(13)(a) At any time within one hundred eighty days after the coverage date, the association may elect to succeed to the rights and obligations of the ceding member insurer that accrue on or after the coverage date and that relate to policies, contracts, or annuities covered, in whole or in part, by the association under any one or more indemnity reinsurance agreements entered into by the member insurer as a ceding insurer and selected by the association. For purposes of this section, coverage date means the date on which the association becomes responsible for the obligations of a member insurer. The election shall be effected by the association, or the National Organization of Life and Health Insurance Guaranty Associations on behalf of the association, sending written notice, return receipt requested, to the affected reinsurers. To facilitate the earliest practicable decision about whether to assume any of the contracts of reinsurance, and in order to protect the financial position of the estate, the receiver and each reinsurer of the ceding member insurer shall make available upon request to the association, or the National Organization of Life and Health Insurance Guaranty Associations on behalf of the association, as soon as possible after commencement of formal delinquency proceedings copies of in-force contracts of reinsurance and all related files and records relevant to the determination of whether such contracts should be assumed, and notices of any defaults under the reinsurance contracts or any known event or condition which with the passage of time could become a default under the reinsurance contracts. If the association makes an election, subdivisions (13)(a)(i) through (vi) of this section apply to the reinsurance contracts selected by the association:

(i) The association shall be responsible for all unpaid premiums due under the reinsurance contracts for periods both before and after the coverage date and shall be responsible for the performance of all other obligations to be performed after the coverage date in each case that relates to policies, contracts, or annuities covered, either in whole or in part, by the association. The association may charge policies, contracts, or annuities covered in part by the association, through reasonable allocation methods, the costs for reinsurance in excess of the obligations of the association and shall provide notice and an accounting of these charges to the liquidator;

(ii) The association shall be entitled to any amounts payable by the reinsurer under the reinsurance contracts with respect to losses or events that occur in periods after the coverage date and that relate to policies, contracts, or annuities covered by the association, in whole or in part, except that on receiving such amounts, the association shall pay to the beneficiary under the policy, contract, or annuity on account of which the amounts were paid a portion of the amount equal to the lesser of: (A) The amount received by the association, and (B) the excess of the amount received by the association over the amount equal to the benefits paid by the association on account of the policy, contract, or annuity, less the retention by the insurer applicable to the loss or event;

(iii) Within thirty days after the association's election, the association and each reinsurer under the contracts assumed by the association shall calculate the net balance due to or from the association under each reinsurance agreement as of the date of the association's election with respect to policies, contracts, or annuities covered, in whole or in part, by the association, giving full credit to all items paid by either the member insurer, or its receiver, rehabilitator, or liquidator, or the reinsurer during the period between the coverage date and the date of the association's election. The association or reinsurer shall pay the net balance due the other within five days after the completion of such calculation. If the receiver, rehabilitator, or liquidator has received any amounts due the association pursuant to subdivision (13)(a)(ii) of this section, the receiver, rehabilitator, or liquidator shall, as promptly as practicable, pay such amounts to the association. Any disputes over the amounts due to either the association or the reinsurer shall be resolved by arbitration pursuant to the terms of the affected reinsurance contracts or, if the contract contains no arbitration clause, as otherwise provided by law;

(iv) If the association, or receiver on behalf of the association, within sixty days after the election, pays the unpaid premiums due for periods both before and after the coverage date that relate to policies, contracts, or annuities covered by the association in whole or in part, the reinsurer shall not be entitled to terminate the reinsurance agreements for failure to pay premiums to the extent that the agreements relate to policies, contracts, or annuities covered by the association either wholly or partially and may not set off any unpaid amounts due under other contracts, or unpaid amounts due from parties other than the association, against amounts due the association;

(v) During the period from the coverage date until the election date or, if the election date does not occur, one hundred eighty days after the date of the order of liquidation, (A) neither the association nor the reinsurer shall have any rights or obligations under reinsurance contracts that the association has the right to assume under subdivision (13)(a) of this section, whether for periods prior to or after the date of the order of liquidation, and (B) the reinsurer, the receiver, and the association shall, to the extent practicable, provide each other data and records upon reasonable request, provided that once the association has elected to assume a reinsurance contract, the rights and obligations of the parties shall be governed by subdivision (13)(a) of this section; and

(vi) If the association does not elect to assume a reinsurance contract by the election date pursuant to subdivision (13)(a) of this section, the association shall have no rights or obligations, in each case for periods both before and after the coverage date, with respect to the reinsurance contract;

(b) When policies, contracts, or annuities or covered obligations with respect thereto are transferred to an assuming insurer, reinsurance on the policies, contracts, or annuities may also be transferred by the association, in the case of contracts assumed under subdivision (13)(a) of this section, subject to the following:

(i) Unless the reinsurer and the assuming insurer agree otherwise, the reinsurance contract transferred shall not cover any new policies of insurance, contracts, or annuities in addition to those transferred;

(ii) The obligations described in subdivision (13)(a) of this section shall not apply on and after the date the reinsurance contract is transferred to the third party insurer; and

(iii) Notice shall be given in writing, return receipt requested, by the transferring party to the affected reinsurer not less than thirty days prior to the effective date of the transfer;

(c) The provisions of subdivision (13) of this section shall supersede the provisions of any law of this state or of any affected reinsurance contract that provides for or requires any payment of reinsurance proceeds on account of losses or events that occur in periods after the coverage date to the receiver, liquidator, or rehabilitator of the insolvent member insurer. The receiver, rehabilitator, or liquidator shall remain entitled to any amounts payable by the reinsurer under the reinsurance contract with respect to losses or events that occur in periods prior to the coverage date, subject to applicable setoff provisions; and

(d) Except as otherwise expressly set forth in subdivision (13) of this section, nothing in such subdivision shall alter or modify the terms and conditions of any reinsurance contract. Nothing in the subdivision shall abrogate or limit any rights of any reinsurer to claim that it is entitled to rescind a reinsurance contract. Nothing in such subdivision shall give a policyowner, contract owner, enrollee, certificate holder, or beneficiary an independent cause of action against a reinsurer that is not otherwise set forth in the reinsurance contract. Nothing in this section shall limit or affect the association's rights as a creditor of the estate against the assets of the estate. Nothing in this section shall apply to reinsurance agreements covering property or casualty risks;

(14) The board of directors of the association shall have discretion and may exercise reasonable business judgment to determine the means by which the association is to provide the benefits of the act in an economical and efficient manner;

(15) If the association has arranged or offered to provide the benefits of the act to a covered person under a plan or arrangement that fulfills the association's obligations under the act, such person shall not be entitled to benefits from the association in addition to or other than those provided under the plan or arrangement; and

(16) Venue in an action against the association arising under the act shall be in the district court of Lancaster County. The association shall not be required to give an appeal bond in an appeal that relates to a cause of action arising under the act.

Source

Annotations

  • This section does not encompass the liability of an insolvent insurer arising under law rather than under the provisions of the policy such insurer issued. Nebraska Life & Health Ins. Guar. Assn. v. Dobias, 247 Neb. 900, 531 N.W.2d 217 (1995).