FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DEPARTMENT ISSUES ADDITIONAL GUIDANCE
REGARDING NEW YORKS MILITARY PERSONNEL
Continues to Follow Through on Governors Directive Under the "Patriot Plan" by Exempting Department Licensees Serving in Active Duty from Continuing Ed. Reqts
Superintendent of Insurance Gregory V. Serio today announced additional guidance to assist New Yorks military personnel called to duty. The guidance, Circular Letter #8 of 2003, extends an exemption from continuing education requirements to all Insurance Department licensees called to active military duty during the term of their license(s).
Today's action is taken in conjunction with Governor Pataki's "Patriot Plan" which was announced on March 4. The "Patriot Plan" will assist troops and their families who face potential added expenses and disruptions caused by being called to active duty in the nation's ongoing war against terrorism and military action in Iraq.
"With the activation of United States military personnel for service both overseas and to protect our homeland, the Insurance Department recognizes there are concerns regarding the continuation of licenses for those individuals," said Serio. "In order to avoid imposing additional burdens and hardships on those who have put aside their personal and professional interests to serve their country, the Department will grant an exemption from the requirements of Section 2132 (continuing education) to all those licensees called to active military duty during the term of their license(s). Without this exemption an applicant for renewal or relicensing would be ineligible to apply until all continuing education requirements were completed."
Earlier in the month, the Department issued guidance and recommendations to ensure that all of New Yorks members of the U.S. Military, including Reserves and the National Guard, who are ordered to active duty will continue to receive their health benefits and will be allowed temporary suspension of certain property casualty insurance policies while on duty. The Insurance Department issued Circular Letter #7 advising Health Insurers and Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) of their obligations under the New York Insurance Law. Military personnel are afforded additional rights of conversion, continuation and suspension of health insurance coverage.
Circular Letters number 5-8 of 2003 are available on the Insurance Department's Web site at www.ins.state.ny.us.