OGC Op. No. 08-08-06
The Office of General Counsel issued the following opinion on August 26, 2008 representing the position of the New York Insurance Department.
RE: Commercial motor vehicle liability policies to out-of-state residents
May a New York authorized property/casualty insurer issue a commercial motor vehicle liability insurance policy in New York to an independently owned and operated livery cab owner that operates in New York, when the cab owner resides in New Jersey or Connecticut?
Yes. The New York Insurance Law does not prohibit a New York authorized property/casualty insurer from issuing a commercial motor vehicle liability insurance policy in New York to an independently owned and operated livery cab owner that resides in New Jersey or Connecticut. However, the Insurance Department’s Office of General Counsel (“OGC”) will not opine on New Jersey or Connecticut law.
The inquirer reports that he represents a New York authorized property/casualty insurer that seeks to issue commercial motor vehicle liability insurance on independently owned and operated livery cabs. Although all of the cabs are operated in New York, in some instances, the cab drivers live in New Jersey or Connecticut. For those individuals, the inquirer has provided the Department with evidence that the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles has issued New York State drivers’ licenses, which show New Jersey or Connecticut addresses. The DMV also has permitted those cabs to be registered in this state and to operate with New York license plates. Further, the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission requires that any liability policy issued on the cabs contain the same address as that on the driver’s license. Accordingly, the inquirer questions whether an authorized New York insurer may issue a policy with a New Jersey or Connecticut address, even if the insurer he represents is not licensed to write insurance in those states.
The Insurance Law does not prohibit, and in fact permits, see N.Y. Ins. Law §§ 1101 and 1102 (McKinney 2006), an authorized property/casualty insurer to solicit, issue, or deliver in New York a commercial motor vehicle liability insurance policy to a livery cab driver that operates a cab in this state, even if the driver resides in New Jersey or Connecticut, as long as the policy forms have been approved by the Insurance Department. However, OGC will not opine as to whether such a policy would satisfy the laws of New Jersey or Connecticut. Therefore, the Insurance Department suggests that the inquirer contact the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance, or the Connecticut Insurance Department, as the case may be.
For further information you may contact Senior Attorney Sapna Maloor at the New York City Office.