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Utah Insurance

Insurance Tips for Wildfire Season

Five answers to common fire-related questions

Wildfire season has arrived in Utah. Summer’s higher temperatures and lower precipitation make it easier for fires to start and harder to put out. This can increase the number of damaged structures and homes in areas affected by wildfires.

“This time of year is especially hazardous for homes near wilderness areas,” said Utah Insurance Commissioner Todd E. Kiser. “But taking the appropriate steps early in wildfire season can be helpful if you need to file a claim. I always advise taking the first step of making a home inventory as a general precaution.”

These are some common questions that people ask during wildfire season:

How do I prove what possessions were lost in the fire?

The best way to prove your losses is to have a home inventory. This is a portfolio of your possessions that you can give your insurer during the claims process. With the rise of smartphones, it’s easy to take photos of your home and possessions and save them on a computer or in the cloud (think services like Google Drive or iCloud). These photos can be used as evidence of your claims when the insurer is determining the value of your overall claim.

What do I do after a fire?

Call your insurance agent or the insurer’s claims hotline as soon as it’s safe to do so. Your policy might require notification within a certain time frame, so get your insurance company involved as soon as possible. Describe the damage to your agent as best you can, and take photos of everything. Photos are helpful in documenting the extent of the damage and making sure you are fairly compensated for your losses.

What do I do if someone says they can fix my house?

If someone approaches you offering to fix your property, proceed with caution. Home repair fraud is common after disasters. Be wary of aggressive contractors or demands for up-front repair payment. If you have concerns, contact the Insurance Department at 801-538-3035.

How do I get my house repaired or rebuilt?

Work with your insurance agent. They can give you detailed timelines and requirements for repairs, as well as recommendations for local contractors. Your agent can offer advice and assistance as you go through the process of getting back to normal.

What happens while my house is being fixed?

The first thing to do is find a place to be safe. Many insurance policies will pay for hotel stays after a fire and while a home is being repaired. You’ll want to ask about any limitations — most policies will only pay for a set amount of nights. Secure what’s left as best you can. Your policy may cover losses due to a fire, but not subsequent losses due to weather damage or theft.

Commissioner Kiser notes that all homeowners policies include coverage for fires, but they don’t always cover the same things. “It is critical for homeowners to read their insurance policies so they understand what is covered. Some policies cover other structures on the property, while others don’t. Some policies replace destroyed items, while others pay fair market value. Your insurance agent can help you understand how your policy applies to your situation.”

 

Press Release
Insurance Tips for Wildfire Season

Related Pages
Disaster Prep Guide: Wildfires
Disaster Preparedness
Disaster Claims Process
How to Create a Home Inventory

Notice of Public Hearing of American Enterprise Mutual Holding Company and American Republic Insurance Company’s Proposed Acquisition of Control of Great Western Insurance Company

Please take notice that the Utah Insurance Commissioner has received an application from American Enterprise Mutual Holding Company, an Iowa domiciled mutual insurance holding company (“AEMHC”), and American Republic Insurance Company, an Iowa corporation (“American Republic” and, together with AEMHC, the “Applicants”), to acquire control of Great Western Insurance Company, a Utah domestic insurance company (“GWIC”). The acquisition of control will be accomplished by American Republic purchasing all of GWIC’s issued and outstanding shares of capital stock from JAMEL, Ltd., a Utah limited partnership and sole securityholder of GWIC.

Pursuant to Utah Insurance Code 31A-16-103, the acquisition of control of a Utah domestic insurer requires a public hearing before the Utah Insurance Commissioner. The public and all policyholders, enrollees, providers and other affected persons are hereby notified that a public hearing will be held regarding the acquisition of control of GWIC by the Applicants on January 26, 2018 at 10:00 a.m. in Room 3112 of the Utah State Office Building, 350 North State Street, Salt Lake City, Utah 84114. During the hearing, the Utah Insurance Commissioner, or his designee, will receive evidence, testimony and oral and written arguments regarding the following issues:

  1. Whether, after the acquisition of control, GWIC would not be able to satisfy the requirements for the issuance of a license to write the line or lines of insurance for which it is presently licensed;
  2. Whether the effect of the acquisition of control would substantially lessen competition in insurance in Utah or tend to create a monopoly in insurance;
  3. Whether the financial condition of the Applicants would jeopardize the financial stability of GWIC or prejudice the interest of its policyholders or any remaining securityholders who are unaffiliated with the Applicants;
  4. Whether the terms of the acquisition are unfair and unreasonable to the securityholders of GWIC;
  5. Whether the plans or proposals the Applicants (if any) have to liquidate GWIC, sell its assets, or consolidate or merge it with any person, or to make any other material change in its business or corporate structure or management, are unfair and unreasonable to the policyholders of GWIC and are not in the public interest; and
  6. Whether the competence, experience and integrity of those persons who would control the operation of GWIC are such that it would not be in the interest of the policyholders of GWIC and the public to permit the merger or other acquisition of control.

See Utah Ins. Code 31A-16-103(8).

ANY POLICYHOLDER, ANNUITANT OR OTHER AFFECTED PERSON IS ENTITLED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE PUBLIC HEARING AND MAY RECEIVE A SUMMARY OF THE APPLICANTS’ APPLICATION OR OTHER NON-CONFIDENTIAL MATERIALS ON FILE WITH THE COMMISSIONER BY SENDING A REQUEST IN WRITING AND A COPYING FEE OF $.25/PAGE TO:

American Republic Insurance Company
Attn: Ryan Cole
1010 N. 102nd Street
Omaha, NE 68114

ALTERNATIVELY, ARRANGEMENTS TO REVIEW A COPY OF THE NON-CONFIDENTIAL FORM A APPLICATION MATERIALS MAY BE MADE BY CALLING RYAN COLE AT (402) 496-8213.

IF YOU WISH TO PARTICIPATE IN THE PUBLIC HEARING OR ANY PROCEEDINGS PRELIMINARY TO THE PUBLIC HEARING, YOU MUST NOTIFY THE COMMISSIONER IN WRITING NO LATER THAN THREE CALENDAR DAYS PRIOR TO THE HEARING THAT YOU WANT TO PARTICIPATE. FAILURE TO DO SO MAY AFFECT YOUR PARTICIPATION.

Dated this 18th day of January, 2018

Todd E. Kiser
Utah Insurance Commissioner

 

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Utah PMN Posting

Health Insurance Open Enrollment Window Closes Friday

Shop now to enroll in coverage that starts in January 2018

Utahns who need health insurance coverage on January 1, 2018 must sign up before open enrollment closes on December 15. Open enrollment is the one time during the year when all Utahns can buy insurance through the individual market either on Healthcare.gov or directly from an insurer.

“It is especially important to consider your options during this year’s open enrollment period,” said Utah Insurance Commissioner Todd E. Kiser. “We’ve seen many changes in the market over the past 12 months and all Utahns should take the time to shop around to find the coverage that works best for their families.”

Shopping around will be very important for Utahns this year. Pricing for many policies has changed and one insurer — Molina — is no longer selling insurance on Healthcare.gov. While Healthcare.gov auto-enrolls members into similar plans when an insurer leaves the marketplace, those members can select any plan available in the individual market. It is important for Molina members to take the time to find a plan that best meets their needs and provides access to their doctors. “Although Healthcare.gov offers federal subsidies and tax credits, they aren’t available to all Utahns,” said Commissioner Kiser. “Between increasing costs and Molina’s exit, many families will be best served by shopping their options both on Healthcare.gov and off-exchange in the wider insurance market.”

Shopping for insurance isn’t easy, but the Utah Insurance Department has resources to help. Talking to a licensed insurance agent is free, and they can help make sense of complicated policies and plan designs. “I always recommend that people talk to an insurance agent before they buy any kind of insurance,” said Commissioner Kiser. “It’s especially important with health insurance. We have an Agent Search tool on our website that can help Utahns find a local agent in their area.”

With December 15 rapidly approaching, now is the time to shop. “Whether you work with an insurance agent already or you visit insurance.utah.gov to find one, all Utahns need to assess their needs now,” said Commissioner Kiser. “Your opportunity to review plans and switch to one that better fits your needs will end on Friday, so do it soon, if not today.”

Press Release
Health Insurance Open Enrollment Window Closes Friday

Urgent Message to Provider Claimants

The Liquidator intends to make a partial distribution of money owed to claimants by the Arches estate in the near future.

If you have changed your address or name since services were provided to Arches’ patients please update that information with the Special Deputy Liquidator immediately.

Updated information should be emailed to mkeithley@utreceivers.com.

FAILURE TO UPDATE INFORMATION COULD RESULT IN DELAY OR MISDIRECTION OF YOUR DISTRIBUTION.

arches liquidation logo

Arches Health Plans News

For the latest updates regarding Arches Health Plans, please visit
Arches Health – In Liquidation
.

On October 27, 2015, the Utah Insurance Department placed Arches Health Plans into receivership. This action was taken to allow the insurance commissioner to supervise the runoff of existing policies.

On January 13, 2016, the Third Judicial District Court of Salt Lake County, State of Utah issued an Order for the Liquidation of Arches Mutual Insurance Company, a Utah health insurance company. Please see the below links for information regarding the liquidation.

Bureau of Justice Assistance Offers Resource on Damaged Vehicles

Provides Consumers with Vehicle History Information.

WASHINGTON – The Office of Justice Programs’ (OJP) Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) recommended today that in light of the anticipated high volume of flood-damaged automobiles in the aftermath of hurricanes Harvey and Irma, consumers educate themselves about a vehicle’s history before making any purchase decisions. Overseen by BJA, the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS) is designed to prevent concealment of flood damage and other vehicle histories.

After past hurricane events, authorities reported truckloads of flooded vehicles being taken out of the impact zone where they were dried out, cleaned and readied for sale to unsuspecting consumers in states that do not brand flood vehicles. It is currently estimated that due to Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma, as many as 1 million flood-damaged automobiles could potentially be passed on to unsuspecting buyers in the coming weeks and months.

The floods caused by or associated with these hurricanes have resulted in severe water damage to thousands of vehicles that can make electrical systems and airbag sensors prone to failure. Prior to purchasing a vehicle, NMVTIS allows consumers to find information on the vehicle’s title, most recent odometer reading and brand history. A “brand” is a descriptive label that states assign to a vehicle to identify the vehicle’s current or prior condition, such as “junk,” “salvage” or “flood” designation. By capturing into one system specific information from multiple entities such as state motor vehicle departments, insurance carriers, salvage auto auctions, automobile recyclers, and junk and salvage yards, NMVTIS offers states and consumers protection from title fraud and potentially unsafe vehicles.

“BJA remains committed to ensuring the consumer protection benefits provided by NMVTIS,” said Acting BJA Director Tracey Trautman. “We encourage prospective purchasers to consider obtaining a NMVTIS vehicle history report and have the vehicle checked by a trusted mechanic as part of making an informed used car-buying decision.” The list of approved NMVTIS vehicle history report providers can be found on the official NMVTIS website at: https://www.vehiclehistory.gov/nmvtis_vehiclehistory.html.

The Office of Justice Programs, headed by Acting Assistant Attorney General Alan R. Hanson, provides federal leadership in developing the nation’s capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice and assist victims. OJP has six bureaus and offices: the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; the Office for Victims of Crime; and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering and Tracking. More information about OJP and its components can be found at: www.ojp.gov.

Press Release
Bureau of Justice Assistance Offers Resource on Damaged Vehicles

Notice of Public Hearing of Steward Health Care System LLC’s Proposed Acquisition of Control of Health Choice Utah, Inc.

Please take notice that the Utah Insurance Commissioner has received an application from Steward Health Care System LLC (“Steward”), a Delaware limited liability company, to acquire control of Health Choice Utah, Inc. (“Health Choice”), a Utah health maintenance organization and indirect, wholly-owned subsidiary of, and controlled by, IASIS Healthcare Corporation (“IASIS”). The acquisition of control will be accomplished in a reverse triangular merger in which IASIS will become a wholly-owned direct subsidiary of Steward, and thus the result of the transaction will be that the Steward will indirectly control Health Choice.

Pursuant to Utah Insurance Code § 31A-16-103, the acquisition of control of a Utah domestic insurer or health maintenance organization requires a public hearing before the Utah Insurance Commissioner. The public and all policyholders, enrollees, providers and other affected persons are hereby notified that a public hearing will be held regarding the acquisition of control of Health Choice by Steward on September 22, 2017 at 2:00 p.m. in Room 3110 of the Utah State Office Building, 350 North State Street, Salt Lake City, Utah 84114. During the hearing, the Utah Insurance Commissioner, or his designee, will receive evidence, testimony and oral and written arguments regarding the following issues:

  1. Whether, after the acquisition of control, Health Choice would not be able to satisfy the requirements for the issuance of a license to write the line or lines of insurance for which it is presently licensed;
  2. Whether the effect of the acquisition of control would substantially lessen competition in insurance in Utah or tend to create a monopoly in insurance;
  3. Whether the financial condition of Steward would jeopardize the financial stability of Health Choice or prejudice the interest of its policyholders or any remaining securityholders who are unaffiliated with Steward;
  4. Whether the terms of the acquisition are unfair and unreasonable to the securityholders of Health Choice;
  5. Whether the plans or proposals Steward (if any) has to liquidate Health Choice, sell its assets, or consolidate or merge it with any person, or to make any other material change in its business or corporate structure or management, are unfair and unreasonable to the policyholders of Health Choice and are not in the public interest; and
  6. Whether the competence, experience and integrity of those persons who would control the operation of Health Choice are such that it would not be in the interest of the policyholders of Health Choice and the public to permit the merger or other acquisition of control.

See Utah Ins. Code § 31A-16-103(8).

ANY ENROLLEE, PROVIDER OR OTHER AFFECTED PERSON IS ENTITLED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE PUBLIC HEARING AND MAY RECEIVE A SUMMARY OF THE STEWARD APPLICATION OR OTHER NON-CONFIDENTIAL MATERIALS ON FILE WITH THE COMMISSIONER BY SENDING A REQUEST IN WRITING AND A COPYING FEE OF $.25/PAGE TO:

Locke Lord LLP
Attn: Tim Farber
111 S. Wacker Drive
Chicago, IL 60606

ALTERNATIVELY, ARRANGEMENTS TO REVIEW A COPY OF THE NON-CONFIDENTIAL FORM A APPLICATION MATERIALS MAY BE MADE BY CALLING ERIC C. SHOWGREN AT (801) 537-9174.

IF YOU WISH TO PARTICIPATE IN THE PUBLIC HEARING OR ANY PROCEEDINGS PRELIMINARY TO THE PUBLIC HEARING, YOU MUST NOTIFY THE COMMISSIONER IN WRITING NO LATER THAN THREE CALENDAR DAYS PRIOR TO THE HEARING THAT YOU WANT TO PARTICIPATE. FAILURE TO DO SO MAY AFFECT YOUR PARTICIPATION.

Dated this 15th day of September, 2017

[SIGNED]
Brett J. Barratt, Deputy Commissioner
for
Todd E. Kiser
Utah Insurance Commissioner

 

The call-in number for the hearing is: 1-877-820-7831; passcode 827555#. If you wish to participate in the public hearing or any proceedings preliminary to the public hearing, you must notify the commissioner in writing no later than three calendar days prior to the hearing that you want to participate. Failure to do so may affect your participation.

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Utah PMN Posting

Notice of Company Applying to become a Utah Certified Reinsurer

September 12, 2017 — Hannover Rück SE of Hannover, Germany (AA-1340125 and NAIC Company Code 10241) has applied to become a Certified Reinsurer in the State of Utah. Please contact Eric Showgren (eshowgren@utah.gov or 801-537-9174) with the Utah Insurance Department no later than October 13, 2017, with any concerns or questions you may have.

Utah PMN Posting

UID news

Public Meeting Regarding Insurance Testing — August 17, 2017 at 1pm

PSI and representatives from the Utah Insurance Department will hold a webinar to discuss the testing program for insurance licenses. The objective of the webinar is to discuss the recently completed Exam Review Committee findings, review any exam content outline changes, view current exam pass rate statistics, and obtain feedback from any interested parties.

The pertinent information regarding the events is listed below. Please RSVP no later than Friday, August 11, 2017.

WEBINAR DATE: August 17, 2017 from 1:00 p.m. MST to 2:00 p.m. MST

Please RSVP at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ZMLFFJF

Prior to the event, if you have any questions please contact Jason McCartney at jmccartney@psionline.com or 800-367-1565 x7318.

Attachment
Public Meeting Webinar Regarding Insurance License Testing