(1) Application for a license to be an adjuster must be made to the commissioner upon forms furnished by the commissioner.
(a) As a part of or in connection with the application, each resident applicant, and nonresident applicant designating Washington as the applicant's home state must furnish information concerning his or her identity, including fingerprints for submission to the Washington state patrol, the federal bureau of investigation, and any governmental agency or entity authorized to receive this information for a state and national criminal history background check, personal history, experience, business record, purposes, and other pertinent facts, as the commissioner may reasonably require. If, in the process of verifying fingerprints, business records, or other information, the commissioner's office incurs fees or charges from another governmental agency or from a business firm, the amount of the fees or charges must be paid to the commissioner's office by the applicant.
(b) A nonresident person holding an adjuster's license or equivalent in a state other than Washington that is the applicant's home state, or is designated as the applicant's home state, must comply with the requirements of this section, with the exception of the fingerprint requirement contained in (a) of this subsection.
(2) Any person willfully misrepresenting any fact required to be disclosed in any application shall be liable to penalties as provided by this code.
(3) The commissioner licenses as an adjuster only an individual or business entity which has otherwise complied with this code and the individual or responsible officer of the business entity has furnished evidence satisfactory to the commissioner that the individual or responsible officer of the business entity is qualified as follows:
(a) Is eighteen or more years of age;
(b) Is a bona fide resident of this state, or is a resident of a state which will permit residents of this state to act as adjusters in such other state;
(c) Is a trustworthy person;
(d) Has had experience or special education or training with reference to the handling of loss claims under insurance contracts, of sufficient duration and extent reasonably to make the individual or responsible officer of the business entity competent to fulfill the responsibilities of an adjuster;
(e) Has successfully passed any examination as required under this chapter;
(f) If for a public adjuster's license, has filed the bond required by RCW 48.17.430
(g) If a nonresident business entity, has designated an individual licensed adjuster responsible for the business entity's compliance with the insurance laws and rules of this state.
(4) If an applicant's principal place of residence or principal place of business is located in a state or province that does not have laws governing adjusters substantially similar to those of this state, the applicant may designate this state or another state or province in which the applicant is licensed and acts as an adjuster to be the applicant's home state for the purposes of this chapter.
(5) If the applicant designates this state or another state or province as the applicant's home state, to be eligible for licensure in this state, the applicant must have satisfied the requirements for licensure as a resident adjuster under the laws of the applicant's designated home state.
(6)(a) Each licensed nonresident adjuster, by application for and issuance of a license, has appointed the commissioner as the adjuster's attorney to receive service of legal process against the adjuster in this state upon causes of action arising within this state. Service upon the commissioner as attorney constitutes effective legal service on the adjuster.
(b) The appointment of the commissioner as attorney is irrevocable, binds any successor in interest or to the assets or liabilities of the adjuster, and remains in effect for as long as there could be any cause of action against the adjuster arising out of the adjuster's transactions in this state. The service of process must be accomplished and processed in the manner prescribed under RCW 48.02.200
(7) The commissioner may require any documents reasonably necessary to verify the information contained in an application and may, from time to time, require any licensed adjuster to produce the information called for in an application for a license.
[2012 c 211 § 12; 2011 c 47 § 10; 2009 c 162 § 23; 2007 c 117 § 18; 1981 c 339 § 15; 1971 ex.s. c 292 § 48; 1947 c 79 § .17.38; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.17.38.]
Effective date—2009 c 162:
See note following RCW 48.03.020
Severability—1971 ex.s. c 292:
See note following RCW 26.28.010