11 CRR-NY 216.6NY-CRR
11 CRR-NY 216.6
11 CRR-NY 216.6
216.6 Standards for prompt, fair and equitable settlements.
(a) In any case where there is no dispute as to coverage, it shall be the duty of every insurer to offer claimants, or their authorized representatives, amounts which are fair and reasonable as shown by its investigation of the claim, providing the amounts so offered are within policy limits and in accordance with the policy provisions.
(b) Actual cash value, unless otherwise specifically defined by law or policy, means the lesser of the amounts for which the claimant can reasonably be expected to:
(1) repair the property to its condition immediately prior to the loss; or
(2) replace it with an item substantially identical to the item damaged. Such amount shall include all monies paid or payable as sales taxes on the item repaired or replaced. This shall not be construed to prevent an insurer from issuing a policy insuring against physical damage to property, where the amount of damages to be paid in the event of a total loss to the property is a specified dollar amount.
(c) Within 15 business days after receipt by the insurer of a properly executed proof of loss and receipt of all items, statements and forms which the insurer requested from the claimant, the claimant, or the claimant's authorized representative, shall be advised in writing of the acceptance or rejection of the claim by the insurer. When the insurer suspects that the claim involves arson, the foregoing 15 business days shall be read as 30 business days pursuant to section 2601 of the Insurance Law. If the insurer needs more time to determine whether the claim should be accepted or rejected, it shall so notify the claimant, or the claimant's authorized representative, within 15 business days after receipt of such proof of loss, or requested information. Such notification shall include the reasons additional time is needed for investigation. If the claim remains unsettled, unless the matter is in litigation or arbitration, the insurer shall, 90 days from the date of the initial letter setting forth the need for further time to investigate, and every 90 days thereafter, send to the claimant, or the claimant's authorized representative, a letter setting forth the reasons additional time is needed for investigation. If the claim is accepted, in whole or in part, the claimant, or the claimant's authorized representative, shall be advised in writing of the amount offered. In any case where the claim is rejected, the insurer shall notify the claimant, or the claimant's authorized representative, in writing, of any applicable policy provision limiting the claimant's right to sue the insurer.
(d) The company shall inform the claimant in writing as soon as it is determined that there was no policy in force or that it is disclaiming liability because of a breach of policy provisions by the policyholder. The insurer must also explain its specific reasons for disclaiming coverage.
(e) In any case where there is no dispute as to one or more elements of a claim, payment for such element(s) shall be made notwithstanding the existence of disputes as to other elements of the claim where such payment can be made without prejudice to either party.
(f) Every insurer shall pay any amount finally agreed upon in settlement of all or part of any claim not later than five business days from the receipt of such agreement by the insurer, or from the date of the performance by the claimant of any condition set by such agreement, whichever is later, except as provided in section 331 of the Insurance Law as respects liens by tax districts on fire insurance proceeds.
(g) Checks or drafts in payment of claims; releases.
No insurer shall issue a check or draft in payment of a first-party claim or any element thereof, arising under any policy subject to this Part, that contains any language or provision that expressly or impliedly states that acceptance of such check or draft shall constitute a final settlement or release of any or all future obligations arising out of the loss. No insurer shall require execution of a release on a first- or third-party claim that is broader than the scope of the settlement.
(h) Any notice rejecting any element of a claim involving personal property insurance shall contain the identity and the claims processing address of the insurer, the insured's policy number, the claim number, and the following statement prominently set forth:
“Should you wish to take this matter up with the New York State Department of Financial Services, you may file with the department either on its website at http://www.dfs.ny.gov/consumer/fileacomplaint.htm or you may write to or visit the Consumer Assistance Unit, Financial Frauds and Consumer Protection Division, New York State Department of Financial Services, at: One State Street, New York, NY 10004; One Commerce Plaza, Albany, NY 12257; 1399 Franklin Avenue, Garden City, NY 11530; or Walter J. Mahoney Office Building, 65 Court Street, Buffalo, NY 14202.”
RESEARCH REFERENCES AND PRACTICE AIDS:
68 NY Jur 2d, Insurance § 1930(supp).
11 CRR-NY 216.6
Current through April 15, 2018
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