Regulate the insurance industry to protect Alaskan consumers.
- Rates and Forms
- Consumer Services
|Mission Results||Core Services|
|Mission Results||Core Services|
|A: Result - Insurance companies and persons transacting insurance comply with Alaska laws and are financially solvent.|
|A1: Core Service - Licensing|
Target #1: 80 percent of insurance company applications processed and licenses issued within 60 days.
Analysis of results and challenges: The division processed 14 insurance company licensing applications for certificate of authority in FY2021; and 86% (12) were processed within 60 days. Applications were completed in 28 days on average.
The review of applications from new insurance companies seeking to do business in Alaska is an important responsibility for the financial section. Completing the approval process for these applications in a timely manner fosters a competitive market and insurance options for Alaskan consumers.
Target #2: Producer applications processed within 10 days.
Analysis of results and challenges: The Licensing section experienced high staff turnover in FY2021. During this fiscal year, the section operated with a 50% vacancy rate, which impacted processing times for applications. In FY2021, the average processing time was 33 days, and the licensing section processed 47,195 applications.
|A2: Core Service - Compliance|
Target #1: 100 percent of financial examinations of domestic insurance companies are completed every three years.
Analysis of results and challenges: The examination of domestic insurance companies for solvency and statutory compliance, at least every three calendar years, is a division priority. The Alaska examination cycle requirement also satisfies accreditation standards established by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) for multi-state domestic companies. Conducting examinations is a critically important function of the division, helping to ensure financial solvency and the ability of insurance companies to pay claims.
Two full-scope examinations of domestic insurers were slated for completion in FY2021: Alaska National Insurance Company (ANIC) and Alaska Timber Insurance Exchange. Both examinations were complete by the statutory deadline of June 30, 2021 and within the NAIC's 18-month accreditation guidelines. ANIC is part of the CopperPoint Insurance Company holding company system domiciled in AZ and the examination was coordinated with the Arizona Department of Insurance and the California Department of Insurance.
The division also monitors the financial solvency of domestic insurers through quarterly and annual financial statements, annual audited financial statements, actuarial opinions, and other financial filings. All financial statements and filings are reviewed and analyzed in a timely manner. The division communicates regularly with all domestic companies regarding examinations, financial analyses, and other regulatory matters.
Target #2: Perform market conduct examinations, analyses, and investigations in order to resolve compliance, market conduct and access issues.
Analysis of results and challenges: Market conduct examinations, analyses, and investigations are used to assess compliance with the law, identify best practices, and correct behavior. In FY2021, the division performed 36 market regulatory activities.
The Division of Insurance performs its own market conduct examinations and participates in multi-state examinations, which are collaborative examinations among jurisdictions. Examinations range from review of sales materials and advertising content and practices to use of approved rates, forms, and claims practices, to the use of agent training. The process may involve checking publicly available information, information companies provide to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners or other state governments, direct communication with the company or other states, and onsite visits, including review of documents and creation of reports.
Market regulation is expanding beyond using market conduct examinations as the primary method of resolving market conduct issues. Beginning in FY2012, the division began collecting data on other types of market regulatory activities in addition to market conduct examinations. The high number of activities in FY2013 was in response to Bulletin B12-02, which required insurers to submit information on associations to validate that the associations are eligible for group insurance under Alaska law.
Premium Tax Audits are a targeted market conduct examination performed on surplus lines brokers. The issues reviewed are their filing of quarterly reports and the subsequent payment of premium taxes and filing fees as well as diligent search efforts, disclosure and notification requirements for using a non-admitted insurer, and prompt delivery of material facts to insured. There were five premium tax audits completed in FY2021. These examinations were incorporated into the chart for the first time in FY2019.
|A3: Core Service - Investigations|
Target #1: 75 percent of investigations and consumer complaint cases approved by the director are completed within one year.
Analysis of results and challenges: In FY2021, the Investigations unit initiated 47 cases and closed 41 cases (including cases from prior years) for a closure rate of 100%. Since FY2010, the unit has closed 95% of its cases. In FY2021, consumer services opened 207 complaint cases and closed 195 cases for a closure rate of 94%. Consumer services also processed 30 External Healthcare Reviews with a 100% closure rate.
In FY2021, consumer services and the investigation unit successfully pursued consumer protection cases. The efforts resulted in consumer services recovering through the complaint filing process $391,826.57 for Alaskan consumers. The investigation unit and consumer services consider the investigation of producer misrepresentation a priority because of the potential harm this type of fraud represents for Alaska consumers.
The Investigations unit in FY2021 successfully pursued cases for criminal prosecution, resulting in seven convictions in Alaska District Court, the submission to the Department of Law of ten cases for prosecution and ten warning letters to subjects of investigations.
The Consumer Services section actively monitors consumer complaints for problematic market conduct trends. In FY2021, Consumer Services responded to more than 1,300 consumer inquiries, complaints, and External Healthcare Reviews.
|B: Result - Competitive, up-to-date insurance products are available to Alaskan consumers.|
Target #1: 70 percent of rate and policy form filing approvals completed within 30 days.
Analysis of results and challenges: In FY2021, 58.7% of all filings were completed within 30 days. Filings were completed within 30 days 57% in FY2020 of life/health filings and FY2020 59.2% of property/casualty filings.
The complexity of insurance products available today and the time required to review and approve these products have significant impacts on staff specialists. Greater numbers of confidentiality requests extended response times.
The division aims to respond to a filing or filing objection within 30 days for 90% of filings. The division's first action, either approving the filing or sending an objection letter, occurred within 30 days 89.9% in FY2020 of all filings. The first action occurred within 30 days for 83.0% in FY2020 of life/health filings and 92.9% in FY2020 of property/casualty filings. Numbers fell early in the fiscal year, likely due to Bulletin 20-06 which extended filing review deadlines. Numbers have since returned to normal and the division anticipates exceeding the target of 90% in the next report.
When the division requests additional information or changes to a rate or form filing, an insurer has 30 days to respond, and the filing is disapproved for use until adequate amendments have been made.
|B1: Core Service - Rates and Forms|
Target #1: The top five insurers share 65 percent or less of the property and casualty market.
Analysis of results and challenges: No undue concentration exists in the property and casualty markets. The current market share percentage of the top five insurers is indicative of a competitive insurance market. The division met their target that the top five insurers control no more than 65 percent of the property and casualty market. The top five insurers controlled 30.9% of the market in FY2021.
|B2: Core Service - Consumer Services|
Target #1: Identify and provide needed consumer resources on emerging and general insurance-related topics.
Analysis of results and challenges: The Division has issued bulletins on topics such as Coverage for COVID-19 Vaccines, Fair Treatment to Consumers Following the Flooding in Southeast Alaska, and Non-Grandfathered Health Plan Extended Transition. The focus continues to be providing consumer content through Insurance.Alaska.Gov.
The Consumers web page on the Division website has received many updates including, guides related to Transportation Network Company Operations and Delivery Driving, Short Term, Limited-Duration Health Insurance, Health Care Sharing Ministries, and Cybercrime. The COVID-19 and Your Insurance page has received frequent updates to publications such as the COVID-19 Vaccination Cost Fact Sheet for Health Care Providers. The Division's Post-Disaster Claims Guide was also distributed to the Alaska Red Cross offices and web-content was added under Emergency Preparedness and Your Insurance. The Division also provided content for the department social media page concerning National Flood Insurance Program Training for Agents and Help with Your Claim After the Landslide.
Target #2: Six outreach programs conducted annually.
Analysis of results and challenges: In FY2021, Director Wing-Heier was involved with many COVID-19 response groups. Specifically, she was involved in efforts to roll out the COVID-19 vaccinations and negotiating payment for COVID-19 testing in Alaska. Notably, the Director was on the National Association of Insurance Commissioner’s (NAIC) COVID-19 panel, and the NAIC Regulatory Framework Task Forces, she also participated as a panelist at the NAIC’s inaugural Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Conference. In addition to her speaking engagements, the Director was also a guest on the NAIC’s monthly podcast “The Regulators”.
Current as of November 22, 2021