New York State
Insurance Department


ISSUED: 6/17/2002

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DEPARTMENT ANNOUNCES COMPLETION OF LICENSING MODERNIZATION INITIATIVE
Agents and Brokers Can Also Now Apply For Original Licenses Via The Internet

          Superintendent of Insurance Gregory V. Serio today announced the completion of the Department’s licensing modernization initiative. Now all agents and brokers can apply for original licenses on-line signifying that all producers can currently apply and renew their licenses via the internet.

          "I am proud to announce that this latest piece of the on-line licensing initiative allows us to categorically state that for producers who choose to apply or renew on-line the Department will never be closed. Last year the Department debuted on-line renewal licensing and now original licenses can be completed via the internet," said Serio. "As I travel throughout the State producers applaud the Department’s use of technology to streamline the licensing process and I would like to add my own praise to this system which improves customer service and enhances efficiency and communication between regulators and the industry."

          As with the other on-line applications producers applying over the internet will do so in a secure, encrypted environment. When the application is accessed instructions appear to assist in completing the application. Once the application is completed, the applicant is asked if they want to pay by credit card or check. Licenses are issued to those who pay by credit card within 24-48 hours, while those who decide to pay by check are mailed their licenses upon receipt of payment by the Department.

          Original on-line licenses posed a unique challenge, particularly for agents. New York Insurance Law requires that before an agent’s license can be issued an insurer must appoint the applicant. An electronic appointment process was necessary. This was resolved by creating electronic mailboxes for all licensed insurers that appoint agents in New York. When an applicant submits an on-line application a "copy" of the application is electronically mailed to the insurer identified in the application as the appointing company. When the application is complete and the insurer confirms the appointment the license is issued.

          Last year the Department debuted on-line renewal licensing for life and accident health agents. This past February an on-line renewal application for property casualty agents was rolled out. Already, over 12,000 agents have renewed electronically, many on Saturdays and Sundays. Brokers will be afforded the opportunity to apply and renew on-line in July of this year utilizing the same technology.

          "Electronic applications have allowed the Department to be open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. During the licensing renewal process, the on-line system has received hundreds of applications over the weekend and after work hours, proving that producers were utilizing the on-line convenience just as we had hoped," added Serio. "I anticipate that the original on-line system will offer this same unique 24x7 convenience to new licensees."

          The Department has also established a dedicated telephone line (518) 474-6630 to assist anyone requiring assistance in completing the application on-line. Additional information on this licensing application process is also available on the Department’s Web site at www.ins.state.ny.us.


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