Posts by: Britney Han

Commissioner Mulready Announces Workers’ Compensation Loss Cost Will Decrease in 2023

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For Immediate Release:
November 4, 2022

Commissioner Mulready Announces Workers’ Compensation Loss Cost Will Decrease in 2023

 

OKLAHOMA CITY – Insurance Commissioner Glen Mulready today announced that Oklahoma businesses should see another rate decrease in workers’ compensation insurance beginning on January 1, 2023. The Oklahoma Insurance Department has approved an annual filing with an 8.2 percent decrease in workers’ compensation insurance loss costs for 2023.

This marks the 12th consecutive year that the department has approved loss cost decreases for workers’ compensation insurance. Oklahoma’s loss cost has decreased significantly from 2016 to 2021, averaging a 9.5 percent decrease per year. Oklahoma’s cost decreases have exceeded countrywide decreases over the last 10 years. Moreover, Oklahoma’s lost-time claim frequency has come down significantly over the last 15 years (by almost 50%) and is projected to continue to decline into 2023.

“We are pleased to announce another significant loss cost decrease that will help support Oklahoma workers and businesses who have struggled with inflation and economic difficulties caused by the pandemic,” Commissioner Mulready said. “Through our administrative system overseen by the Workers’ Compensation Commission, the continued reform policies enacted by the Governor and legislature, and our cost-efficient, competitive workers’ compensation insurance market, we continue to show employers that Oklahoma is an attractive place to do business.”

Loss costs are the average cost of lost wages and medical payments of workers injured per $100 of payroll or as a percentage of payroll. The new loss costs will go into effect for new and renewing policies effective January 1, 2023.

If you have insurance questions or issues with your insurance company, please contact the Oklahoma Insurance Department at 1-800-522-0071 or visit our website at www.oid.ok.gov.

 

Questions or comments should be directed to
Chief of Communications, Liz Heigle
Liz.Heigle@oid.ok.gov | (405) 819-2221

Special Notice to Oklahoma Insurance Professionals (Commercial Modernization Order)

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Special Notice to Oklahoma Insurance Professionals


To:          All Property and Casualty Insurers Licensed in Oklahoma and All Advisory Organizations Licensed in the State of Oklahoma

From:     Glen Mulready, Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner

Date:      November 3, 2022

Re:         Commercial Modernization Order


On October 26, 2022, the Commissioner of the Oklahoma Insurance Department (“Department”) issued an order exempting certain types of insurance from the form filing and approval requirements and from the rate filing and review requirements. Oklahoma law allows the Commissioner by order to exempt from the filing requirements any insurance document or form which are, in his opinion, not desirable or necessary for the protection of commercial policyholders or the public.

Therefore, per the order, certain specialty commercial insurance products are now exempt from policy form approval and rate filing requirements. The order can be found here: https://www.oid.ok.gov/about-oid/divisions-programs/legal-division/final-orders/final-order-2022/. Please note the minimum premium per policy amounts required to be met before a policy or rate is exempt.

Questions concerning this bulletin should be directed to Kim Hunter, General Counsel, at kim.hunter@oid.ok.gov, Cuc Nguyen, Director Rate and Form Compliance Division, at cuc.nguyen@oid.ok.gov, and/or the Oklahoma Insurance Department located at 400 NE 50th Street, Oklahoma City, OK 73105-1816.

Steve Kinion to Lead Oklahoma Captive Division

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For Immediate Release:
November 2, 2022

Steve Kinion to Lead Oklahoma Captive Division

OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner Glen Mulready announced the appointment of Steve Kinion as the Oklahoma Insurance Department’s new Captive Director.

Kinion previously served 13 years as the captive director for the Delaware Insurance Department. Captive Review magazine has named him multiple times to its global “Power 50” listing the 50 most influential figures in the global captive insurance industry. He holds the Associate in Captive Insurance (ACI) designation which is the highest professional designation for captive insurance. Fewer than 650 persons in the world have earned the ACI.

“Steve is a recognized leader and effective advocate of the booming captive insurance sector,” said Insurance Commissioner Glen Mulready. “His extensive knowledge and experience with captive insurance and insurance law and regulation will ensure that Oklahoma stays an extremely competitive jurisdiction. We look forward to welcoming Steve back to Oklahoma.”

“Oklahoma’s strengths as a captive insurance domicile is having regulators who understand captive insurance and its statewide commitment to captive insurance in both the business community and all sectors of state government. I look forward to taking the lead role in furthering Commissioner Mulready’s goal to bring the Sooner State’s captive insurance program to a higher level of excellence,” said Kinion.

Kinion first joined the Oklahoma Insurance Department in 1995 as counsel to the Oklahoma State Board for Property and Casualty Rates and as an assistant general counsel. From 2001 to 2008, he served as the chairman of the board of directors for the Oklahoma Health Insurance High Risk Pool. He is a former chair of the American Bar Association Insurance Regulation Committee and is a member of the Federation of Regulatory Counsel. He served more than 30 years in the U.S. Army Reserve, retiring in 2017 at the rank of lieutenant colonel.

Captive insurance is a form of self-insurance. Captive insurance companies are owned by entities wishing to better manage the cost and administration of their risks. Oklahoma’s business-friendly laws and regulatory infrastructure make it the leading jurisdiction for business. The OID is committed to ensuring the state’s statutes and regulations keep pace with the changing needs of the global captive insurance industry. To learn more about Oklahoma captives, visit oid.ok.gov/captive.

Kinion began his new role on November 1, 2022.

 

Questions or comments should be directed to
Communications Director, Liz Heigle
Liz.Heigle@oid.ok.gov | (405) 819-2221

Steve Kinion to Lead Oklahoma Captive Division

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For Immediate Release:
November 2, 2022

Steve Kinion to Lead Oklahoma Captive Division

OKLAHOMA CITY – Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner Glen Mulready announced the appointment of Steve Kinion as the Oklahoma Insurance Department’s new Captive Director.

Kinion previously served 13 years as the captive director for the Delaware Insurance Department. Captive Review magazine has named him multiple times to its global “Power 50” listing the 50 most influential figures in the global captive insurance industry. He holds the Associate in Captive Insurance (ACI) designation which is the highest professional designation for captive insurance. Fewer than 650 persons in the world have earned the ACI.

“Steve is a recognized leader and effective advocate of the booming captive insurance sector,” said Insurance Commissioner Glen Mulready. “His extensive knowledge and experience with captive insurance and insurance law and regulation will ensure that Oklahoma stays an extremely competitive jurisdiction. We look forward to welcoming Steve back to Oklahoma.” 

“Oklahoma’s strengths as a captive insurance domicile is having regulators who understand captive insurance and its statewide commitment to captive insurance in both the business community and all sectors of state government. I look forward to taking the lead role in furthering Commissioner Mulready’s goal to bring the Sooner State’s captive insurance program to a higher level of excellence,” said Kinion.

Kinion first joined the Oklahoma Insurance Department in 1995 as counsel to the Oklahoma State Board for Property and Casualty Rates and as an assistant general counsel. From 2001 to 2008, he served as the chairman of the board of directors for the Oklahoma Health Insurance High Risk Pool. He is a former chair of the American Bar Association Insurance Regulation Committee and is a member of the Federation of Regulatory Counsel. He served more than 30 years in the U.S. Army Reserve, retiring in 2017 at the rank of lieutenant colonel.

Captive insurance is a form of self-insurance. Captive insurance companies are owned by entities wishing to better manage the cost and administration of their risks. Oklahoma’s business-friendly laws and regulatory infrastructure make it the leading jurisdiction for business. The OID is committed to ensuring the state’s statutes and regulations keep pace with the changing needs of the global captive insurance industry. To learn more about Oklahoma captives, visit oid.ok.gov/captive.

Kinion began his new role on November 1, 2022.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Questions or comments should be directed to
Communications Director, Liz Heigle
Liz.Heigle@oid.ok.gov | (405) 819-2221

HEALTH COVERAGE OPTIONS FOR THE UNEMPLOYED

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HEALTH COVERAGE OPTIONS FOR THE UNEMPLOYED

 

  1. COBRA – Upon separation from your employer you may have certain rights depending on the size of your employer, your status while working and if you were covered by your employer’s health, dental and/or vision plans. If you are eligible for COBRA, your employer or their administrator will send you a COBRA packet to your home address (the plan administrator has 14 days to notify you after being notified of your separation by your employer) which will tell you what benefits you are eligible to continue, the cost, the time frame to apply, how to apply and pay for your benefits. COBRA premiums can be expensive (full retail cost plus 2% administration fee) but can be an option for those who may need to continue care with your current network of doctors along with the benefits you are accustomed to receiving, plus your already accumulated out-of-pocket expenses. Pay close attention to your deadlines to enroll and pay, these are hard deadlines, no exceptions. 
  2. SPOUSAL COVERAGE – Should your own spouse work and have employer coverage, you may be eligible for coverage due to your own qualifying event (loss of job coverage). You will want to call your spouse’s employer human resources department to find out the details or refer to your spouse’s company policy handbook or summary plan There is a deadline to notify your spouse’s company and enroll.  Be sure to understand the benefits and costs. 
  3. UNDER AGE 26 – If your parents have coverage through their own employers, you may still be an eligible dependent if you are under the age of 26. You do not have to live with your parents, be single or in college.If you have a spouse and/or children, they will not be eligible to have coverage with you under your parents’ plan. Your parents will have to add you as their dependent to their employer plan.  There is a deadline to add you as their dependent due to your own loss of coverage so they would have to act on your behalf.

     

  4. INDIVIDUAL FULLY COMPREHENSIVE MEDICAL INSURANCE PLANS- At the current time you may buy ACA compliant  plans which are fully comprehensive medical individual plans on the Federal Exchange at www.healthcare.gov  or directly from a licensed agent or broker or insurance carrier selling in Oklahoma off the Exchange. Your loss of health insurance through your employer qualifies you to buy individual insurance through what is called a Special Enrollment Period (SEP). This period lasts for 60 days upon the date you lose your employer health insurance. Please keep in mind, you are not covered during this 60-day window if your coverage is already expired. If you miss this opportunity, your next enrollment period would be during the Annual Open Enrollment Period from November 1st through December 15th of each year. These carriers accept you as is and covers all pre-existing conditions and no health questions.  This applies both on the Federal Exchange or if you buy directly from the licensed agent or company off the Exchange. Find out if you are eligible for federal premium assistance by visiting www.healthcare.gov.
  5. SOONERCARE- Comprehensive health, dental and vision care for dependent children under the age of 19 and adults ages 19-64. To see if you or your family qualify visit: www.mysoonercare.org.

 

Note: Information is current and is subject to change due to the uncertainty in change t o the federal law. Special protections  under  Federal Law are granted to Native Americans, please see your Tribal Administration Office or www.healthcare.gov.

  • Federal Poverty Level {FPL} and program eligibility has changed  due to Medicaid  Expansion effective 1.2021

Revised October 2022

Predetermination Process

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INSTRUCTIONS TO REQUEST A DETERMINATION REGARDING CRIMINAL HISTORY

Pursuant to 59 O.S. §4000.1(F), a person with a criminal history record may request from the Oklahoma Insurance Department (“OID”) a determination of whether his or her criminal history record may disqualify him or her from obtaining the desired license. This determination may be requested prior to obtaining any required education or training for such license.

If you would like a determination regarding your criminal history record, please submit a request in writing and include either:

  • A certified copy of your criminal history record with an explanation of each conviction mentioned in the criminal history record; or
  • A statement describing each criminal conviction including the date of each conviction, the court of jurisdiction and the sentence imposed.

Also with your request, include the email or physical address that you would like the determination sent to, along with any additional evidence you wish OID to take into consideration. If you were incarcerated, your request must include the date of your release.

Requests can be sent to:
Oklahoma Insurance Department
Attn: Licensing Division
400 NE 50th Street
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105
licensing@oid.ok.gov

OID will provide the determination within ninety (90) days of your request. Please call (405) 521-3916 or email licensing@oid.ok.gov if you have any questions.

Bright Health Will No Longer Offer Individual Health Plans to Oklahomans in 2023

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For Immediate Release:
October 24, 2022

Bright Health Will No Longer Offer Individual Health Plans to Oklahomans in 2023

 

OKLAHOMA CITY – Bright Health will stop offering individual health plans in 2023 in all the Affordable Care Act (ACA) markets across the country. In Oklahoma, roughly 14,000 people in Oklahoma, Canadian and Cleveland counties will be impacted by this decision. The Oklahoma Insurance Department (OID) has been monitoring the company’s activities and ensures consumer protection is its top priority.

Earlier this year, members enrolled in impacted plans received a letter from Bright Health informing them that the company was exiting the Oklahoma market in 2023. For more details regarding Bright Health’s decision, please read their press release or visit www.brighthealthgroup.com.

Coverage Remains Effective for the Remainder of Plan Year 2022 

Bright Health members can continue to use their health insurance through the end of this year. Members need to continue to pay premiums through the end of 2022 to maintain access to their health insurance benefits and coverage. Members can contact Bright Health member services at 855-827-4448 with any questions or concerns. If you experience difficulties working with the company, please contact the OID at 800-522-0071 or visit www.oid.ok.gov. 

New Coverage for Bright Health Members in 2023 

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will move all Bright Health memberships to other companies in the Oklahoma ACA Market using automatic enrollment procedures effective January 1, 2023. Consumers can keep their auto-assigned plan or select another insurance company during the open enrollment period from November 1, 2022, through January 15, 2023. While the auto-assigned plans closely match the benefit plans consumers have with Bright Health, the cost and benefits of these plans will vary. All Bright policyholders will receive a notification about pricing and benefit information regarding their new plans.

If you have questions, please contact the Oklahoma Insurance Department at 1-800-522-0071 or visit our website at www.oid.ok.gov.

 

Questions or comments should be directed to
Chief of Communications, Liz Heigle
Liz.Heigle@oid.ok.gov | (405) 819-2221

BULLETIN NO. 8-2022

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BULLETIN NO. 8-2022

To: All Health Insurance Companies and Other Interested Parties
Re: Enhanced Cash Surrender Value Programs
From: Glen Mulready, Insurance Commissioner
Date: October 19, 2022

 

The Oklahoma Insurance Department (“Department”) is releasing this bulletin with the purpose of providing its position on endorsements offering enhanced cash surrender value (“ECSV”) benefits.

Oklahoma adopted the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (“NAIC”) Model Standard Nonforfeiture Law (Model #808), codified at 36 O.S. § 4029. The Standard Nonforfeiture Law contains a smoothness requirement in that intends to require a reasonably orderly progression in the cash value of life insurance policies and prohibits sharp increases in the same. See 36 O.S. § 4029(L). The smoothness requirement, applied in addition to mandated minimum values, serves to avoid erratic cash values and the offering of discontinuous benefits.

There is an ongoing and increasing concern that ECSV endorsements offered to policyholders of universal life insurance policies conflict with the smoothness requirement and are therefore in violation of the Standard Nonforfeiture Law. In order to relieve this concern, the Insurance Commissioner has requested that the NAIC Life Insurance and Annuities (A) Committee and NAIC Life Actuarial (A) Task Force clarify whether the ECSV endorsements violate the Standard Nonforfeiture Law. The National Council of Insurance Legislators (“NCOIL”) is also reviewing this matter.

ECSV endorsements filed by life insurers with the Department in the past were approved for use. However, until clarification on the Standard Nonforfeiture Law’s impact on such endorsements is received, future ECSV endorsement filings will not be approved by the Department.

Questions concerning this bulletin should be directed to Kim Hunter, General Counsel, at kim.hunter@oid.ok.gov, Molly Clinkscales, Assistant General Counsel, at molly.clinkscales@oid.ok.gov, and/or the Oklahoma Insurance Department located at 400 NE 50th Street, Oklahoma City, OK 73105-1816.

 

Commissioner Mulready Receives Autism Speaks’ Public Service Award

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For Immediate Release:
October 19, 2022

Commissioner Mulready Receives Autism Speaks’ Public Service Award

 

OKLAHOMA CITY – Insurance Commissioner Glen Mulready was recognized earlier this month with the 2022 Public Service Award presented by Autism Speaks, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of those affected by autism.

Autism Speaks’ Director of State Government Affairs Christa Stevens, Vice President of Government Affairs at Council of Autism Service Providers Judith Ursitti and Tara Hood, a parent of two children with autism and a long-time volunteer advocate for the Oklahoma autism community, presented the award.

“We are honored to recognize Commissioner Mulready with an Autism Speaks’ 2022 Public Service Award,” Stevens said. “Using his experience as an insurance professional, state legislator and now a regulator, Commissioner Mulready has applied his deep understanding of the current insurance landscape to ensure compliance with required coverage for autism therapies and treatments. His leadership will make a lifetime of difference for Sooner families.”

“I am humbled to receive this award and pleased to share this honor with the team at OID,” Mulready said. “I’d like to acknowledge our Legal and Consumer Assistance Divisions for their hard work and dedication to protecting all Oklahomans.”

Commissioner Mulready is selected for this award for his exceptional contributions to the autism community in Oklahoma in several ways over the past couple of years. In particular, the Life and Health Bulletin No. 2021-03 he issued last year helped knock down significant barriers to individuals with autism getting access to evidence-based treatments to help with the challenges caused by autism.

If you have questions about other insurance issues, please contact the Oklahoma Insurance Department at 1-800-522-0071 or visit our website at www.oid.ok.gov.

From left to right are Christa Stevens, Insurance Commissioner Glen Mulready, Judith Ursitti and Tara Hood on October 13, 2022. Oklahoma Insurance Department, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Questions or comments should be directed to
Communications Director, Liz Heigle
Liz.Heigle@oid.ok.gov | (405) 819-2221

Get Ready for Fire Prevention Week: Prepare Your Home This Fall Season

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For Immediate Release:
October 10, 2022

Get Ready for Fire Prevention Week:
Prepare Your Home This Fall Season

By Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner Glen Mulready

After a long summer of fun in the sun, the fall season has finally arrived in Oklahoma. Fall brings cool, crisp weather and beautiful colors. It also brings new hazards and risks along with falling leaves and cooler temperatures. While it’s nice to warm up next to a fire or with a heated blanket, it’s important to understand the risks involved. Home fires and related injuries increase in the fall with the use of candles, space heaters, stoves for cooking and fireplaces to keep warm. 

As we ease into the colder months and get ready for Fire Prevention Week, now is a great time to make sure your home heating system is working properly, and that you understand the importance of seasonal inspections. Proper maintenance protects your family from avoidable fire dangers and protects all of Oklahoma from fire disasters and increasing insurance rates. Last year, insurance companies paid out over $1.3 billion in claims for fire-related damages nationwide.

During Fire Prevention Week, I’d like to share helpful reminders to Oklahomans on fire safety. Here are a few simple tips to help you protect your family and property as you crank up the heat.

Inside Your Home 

  • Make sure your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are working properly. 
  • Clean fireplaces and chimneys. 
  • Install fire extinguishers in your home. 
  • Keep flammable objects away from furnaces, fireplaces and other heating units. 
  • Never leave burning candles or items on the stove unattended. 
  • Never use a range or an oven as a supplemental heating device. Not only is it a safety hazard, but it can also be a source of potentially toxic fumes. 


Outside Your Home
 

  • Remove dead leaves and other debris around the house and from the roof.
  • Clean or replace the furnace filter and clean the entire furnace area to remove debris. 
  • Have heating units inspected by a licensed contractor. 
  • Never discard hot ashes near the home. Place them in a metal container outside and well away from the house.

Many fire departments, including Oklahoma City and Tulsa, offer free smoke detectors, batteries and installation to residents who request it. It’s a product that can save your life, so I strongly encourage you to get it installed. After learning these safety tips, I hope we can all remain safe and healthy while enjoying the fall season without any fires. 

If you have questions about other insurance issues, please contact the Oklahoma Insurance Department at 1-800-522-0071 or visit our website at www.oid.ok.gov.

 

Questions or comments should be directed to
Communications Director, Liz Heigle
Liz.Heigle@oid.ok.gov | (405) 819-2221