(1) No insurance policy form or application form where written application is required and is to be attached to the policy, or printed life or disability rider or endorsement form may be issued, delivered, or used unless it has been filed with and approved by the commissioner. This section does not apply to:
(a) Surety bond forms;
(c) Forms exempted from filing requirements by the commissioner under RCW 48.18.103
(d) Manuscript policies, riders, or endorsements of unique character designed for and used with relation to insurance upon a particular subject;
(e) Contracts of insurance procured under the provisions of chapter 48.15
(f) Forms filed under the requirements of RCW 48.43.733
(2) Every such filing containing a certification, in a form approved by the commissioner, by either the chief executive officer of the insurer or by an actuary who is a member of the American academy of actuaries, attesting that the filing complies with Title 48 RCW and Title 284 of the Washington Administrative Code, may be used by the insurer immediately after filing with the commissioner. The commissioner may order an insurer to cease using a certified form upon the grounds set forth in RCW 48.18.110
. This subsection does not apply to certain types of policy forms designated by the commissioner by rule.
(3) Except as provided in RCW 48.18.103
, every filing that does not contain a certification pursuant to subsection (2) of this section must be made not less than thirty days in advance of issuance, delivery, or use. At the expiration of the thirty days, the filed form shall be deemed approved unless prior thereto it has been affirmatively approved or disapproved by order of the commissioner. The commissioner may extend by not more than an additional fifteen days the period within which he or she may affirmatively approve or disapprove any form, by giving notice of the extension before expiration of the initial thirty-day period. At the expiration of the period that has been extended, and in the absence of prior affirmative approval or disapproval, the form shall be deemed approved. The commissioner may withdraw any approval at any time for cause. By approval of any form for immediate use, the commissioner may waive any unexpired portion of the initial thirty-day waiting period.
(4) The commissioner's order disapproving any form or withdrawing a previous approval must state the grounds for disapproval.
(5) No form may knowingly be issued or delivered as to which the commissioner's approval does not then exist.
(6) The commissioner may, by rule, exempt from the requirements of this section any class or type of insurance policy forms if filing and approval is not desirable or necessary for the protection of the public.
(7) Every member or subscriber to a rating organization must adhere to the form filings made on its behalf by the organization. Deviations from the organization are permitted only when filed with the commissioner in accordance with this chapter.
(8) Medical malpractice insurance form filings are subject to the provisions of this section.
(9) Variable contract forms; disability insurance policy forms; individual life insurance policy forms; life insurance policy illustration forms; industrial life insurance contract, individual medicare supplement insurance policy, and long-
term care insurance policy forms, which are amended solely to comply with the changes in nomenclature required by RCW 48.18A.035
, and 48.76.090
are exempt from this section.
[2015 c 19 § 2; 2008 c 217 § 12; 2006 c 8 § 214; 2005 c 223 § 8; 1997 c 428 § 3; 1989 c 25 § 1; 1982 c 181 § 16; 1947 c 79 § .18.10; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.18.10.]
Intent—2015 c 19: "It is the intent of the legislature to enhance competition and create regulatory uniformity in the filing requirements for group health benefit plans other than small group plans, as well as stand-alone dental plan and stand-alone vision plan rates and forms in order to increase competition among carriers and provide a more competitive market for these products." [2015 c 19 § 1.]
Severability—Effective date—2008 c 217:
See notes following RCW 48.03.020
Findings—Intent—Part headings and subheadings not law—Severability—2006 c 8:
See notes following RCW 5.64.010
Effective date—1989 c 25: "This act shall take effect on September 1, 1989." [1989 c 25 § 10.]
Severability—1982 c 181:
See note following RCW 48.03.010
Format of disability policies: RCW 48.20.012