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Property Insurers: Filing Instructions

Guidelines for Rate, Form, Territory, Classification and Rule Filings
Property Insurers: Filing Instructions
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Introduction

IMPORTANT NOTICE: As of May 25, 2020, Insurance Regulation 195 (11 NYCRR 6) §6.2(a)(2) requires any submission of a rate, rating plan, rating rule, rating manual, rating classification, territory, or insurance contract or policy form to be made through the NAIC’s System for Electronic Rates and Forms Filing (SERFF), subject to limited exceptions and exemptions as specified in §6.3 (11 NYCRR 6). Only filers meeting these exceptions, or having been approved for such exemption under §6.3, may make paper filings pursuant to these guidelines.

"Speed to Market" Program Homepage

Please note that the contents of this page has been revised and updated as of November 2020.

Links in all SERFF requirements have been redirected to this page, which now contains all Review Standards Checklists, Compliance Questionnaires, Forms, "Speed to Market" Checklists (linked in Section III below).  There have been no substantive changes to these forms at this time.

*** Filings that do not conform with general instructions or filings rules will be rejected! ***

Related Resources

I - Questions/ Contact Information

If you have questions regarding filing instructions, SERFF, Speed-To-Market procedures, completion of the review standards checklists or compliance questionnaires, please contact a DFS representative for the following areas:

Line of Business

Name of Representative and E-mail address

Phone Number

Automobile

Holford Marshall

(212) 480-5582

Liability

Denise Chatman

(212) 480-5597

Property

Daniel Sheridan

(212) 480-3885

Actuarial

Anthony Yoder

(212) 480-5500

II - General Guidelines

DFS provides the following information, to assist companies with the filing of rates, forms, territories, classifications and rules in the State of New York via SERFF. Through the use of a two-tiered checklist system-Review standards checklists and compliance questionnaires guidelines are provided regarding state requirements and review standards that are applied during the file review.

In Department Circular Letter No. 15 (2003) and Circular Letter No. 5 (2009), the Department requested that all filings should be made using the NAIC's System for Electronic Rate and Form Filing (SERFF). SERFF is a web-based electronic filing system which among other benefits facilitates communication, management, analysis and electronic storage of filings including supporting information.

As stated above, pursuant to Regulation 195, the Department accepts electronic filings only through the NAIC System for Electronic Rate and Form Filing (SERFF).

If your company is not a registered SERFF user and wish to become one, you may visit the SERFF web site for information about registering for SERFF. If you are a registered SERFF user, please see our SERFF filing instructions below. Compliance with these procedures does not guarantee acknowledgement or approval of the filing.

The following general instructions must be followed in submitting SERFF filings. They also include components that must be attached to your filings, and some that need not be included.  The company should also review the information in the New York SERFF General Instructions, State Filing requirements and any other relevant requirements when submitting a filing through SERFF.

In addition, the Industry Manual for SERFF v7, available within the SERFF system Help area, should be consulted before submitting a filing.

Complete all fields when using the SERFF filing wizard. We need the information in the Filing Wizard and on the General Information tab. This requirement is in lieu of a separate transmittal document and/or a cover letter. Also, complete all the fields related to new and revised forms, rates and rules on the appropriate schedule in SERFF. If the data and attachments are not included in the appropriate schedule your filing will be rejected.

New York has implemented the Uniform Property & Casualty Product Coding Matrix.  A copy of the current version can be downloaded from the SERFF State Participation page; from there, select the “Property and Casualty (PDF)” link underneath the “Product Coding Matrices.”

Filings received by the Department after close of business (5:00 p.m. EST) will be considered received the next business day.

A cover letter is no longer required. All information previously provided in the cover letter should be included in the Filing Description field under the General Information tab in SERFF. It should clearly explain the intent of the filing, and highlight any substantive changes (such as changes in ratemaking methodology or major coverages provided). If the filing is based on a previous filing that was not approved in New York, the Filing Description should include reference to the previous Department file number or SERFF tracking number. If the filing is currently in use in another state, this should also be indicated in the Filing Description. If more details are required, you may attach a supplementary explanatory memorandum on the supporting documentation tab.

If compliance with applicable Submission Requirements has been evidenced in a SERFF filing previously approved by the Department and there have been no changes to such portion of the filing and requirement categories are included in the current filing, such Submission Requirement may be by-passed by referencing the Department's "R" file number or SERFF tracking number with the explanation “previously submitted and approved”.

Acceptable Submission Formats

All attachments must be provided in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) format. Adobe Acrobat submissions of poor quality will be rejected. In order to avoid this potential problem and make use of the full range of Adobe Acrobat publishing tools, files should be converted to PDF format through the use of the Acrobat Distiller in lieu of merely scanning such documents. No information will be modified.

If Microsoft Excel attachments are required to support the filing or requested during the review of the filing, exact copies in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) format must also accompany the submission. Microsoft Word documents cannot be attached to SERFF filings.

The Department uses the SERFF PDF Pipeline function to assist in the review process. The PDF Pipeline will not convert individual attachments larger than 10 megabytes (MB). The easiest way to determine whether your individual attachments are larger than 10 MB is to use the PDF Pipeline before you submit the filing. Once your filing is complete and ready to submit to the state, click on “PDF Pipeline” and look at the Legend Icon. If you see the red “x” icon, at least one of the attachments associated with that Schedule Item is over 10 MB or is not a PDF document and, therefore, cannot be converted in the PDF Pipeline. From that point, you can return to the attachment and reduce the file size or separate it into multiple attachments, then submit your filing to the state.

A. Adoption or Modifications of Rate Service Organization (RSO) or Other Filings

  1. Adoptions of Rate Service Organization (RSO) filings must be only for filings that have been approved or accepted for use in New York.
  2. If new form(s), territories, classification(s), or rule(s) are being filed and there are similar ones currently approved for use by a Rate Service Organization (RSO), the reference organization, reference title, and reference number fields must be completed on the General Information tab and the Filing Description should include the Department's "R" file number or SERFF tracking number and effective date of the approval. If the filing is currently in use in another state, this should be indicated in the Filing Description.
  3. If the company wants to use an RSO’s loss costs or rating plans, you must complete the rate filing sequence checklist (linked in table below, Section III). For rating plans, a copy of the rating plan must also be submitted and attached to the Rate/Rule Schedule. For adoption of loss costs, the rate/rule page(s) containing the proposed Loss Costs Multiplier(s) must be attached to the Rate/Rule Schedule.
  4. If new form(s), territories, classification(s), or rule(s) are being filed and there are similar ones currently approved for use by another insurer, the Filing Description field on the General Information tab should include reference to the Department's file number or SERFF tracking number and effective date of the approval, or copies of the approved items should be included. If the filing is currently in use in another state, this should also be indicated in the Filing Description.

B. Requests for Confidentiality / Proprietary Material

  1. The Department does not permit the company to designate the whole filing as confidential, except as permitted by the Insurance Law (for example, credit scoring models).
  2. SERFF allows the company to designate parts of the filing confidential (Please review Industry SERFF Manual for instructions on marking the filing). If you are requesting confidentiality under the Freedom of Information Law for a part of your filing, you must identify the specific document(s): form name and number, rating supporting documentation, etc., for which confidentiality is being requested, in the Filing Description field on the General Information tab. The Filing Description field must also include the reasons why the information should be exempted from disclosure. The reasons provided must meet the standards contained in Section 87(2) of the N.Y. Public Officers Law. This law exempts from disclosure records that contain trade secrets or would cause competitive injury, if disclosed. The company must explain why the document(s) are trade secrets or if released, would cause competitive injury. The Department may reject your request for confidentiality if the reasons are not specified or are inadequate.
  3. If you are requesting confidentiality for documents and/or amendments sent after the original submission of the filing, you must identify the exact document(s): form name and number, rating supporting documentation, etc., for which confidentiality is being requested in a Note to the Reviewer including the reasons why the information should be excepted from disclosure.
  4. The request for confidentiality must be clearly stated and designated as described above and must be made by the entity submitting the filing. A request for confidentiality made by a third party other than the submitting party is not deemed to be a statutory request.
  5. Note that the process of making a determination regarding whether that portion of the filing meets the standards contained in Section 87(2)(d) of the N.Y. Public Officers Law may be done at anytime.
  6. Pursuant to Section 2806(b) of the New York Insurance Law, any filing relating to credit information is not subject to disclosure under Article 6 or Article 6A of the Public Officers Law.

C. Free Trade Zone Class 3 Risks

  1. Insurance Law §6303 (a)(3) sets forth a special risk insurance exemption ("class 3") from rate and form filing or approval requirements for certain types of policies issued to large commercial insureds that employ or retain a special risk manager to assist in the negotiation and purchase of the policies. Pursuant to Regulation 86 Section 16.4 (c)(1), insurers are required to electronically submit via SERFF all FTZ Class 3 submissions unless they have filed and received approval for a hardship exemption from the electronic filing requirement, in which case the paper filing requirements should be followed (This section is subject to expiration and has been extended several times). NOTE: The “one day certificate of insurance” and the “Supplemental Checklist filing” requirements were eliminated from the statute by Chapter 75 of the laws of 2013.
  2. Pursuant to Section 6303(a)(3)(B) of the Insurance Law the company is required to file for information only any form that has not been previously filed with the Superintendent within three business days after the first delivery of a policy using such form, but no later than 60 calendar days after the inception date of such policy. It should be noted that any policy form that an insurer previously filed with the Superintendent and that the Superintendent disapproved or rejected or that the insurer withdrew will not be considered to have been previously filed with the Superintendent. Although filing is not required except as specified in section 6303 of the Insurance Law, rates and policy forms applied to special risks must still satisfy governing standards set forth in the Insurance Law and regulations.
  3. For the SERFF submission, information is to be provided on the General Information tab and the Form Schedule tab.
  4. On the General Information tab, the Filing Description field must include the following language: "The company is submitting for informational purposes the form(s) for policies issued to a FTZ Class 3 risk which has (have) not been previously filed with the Superintendent.
  5. On the Form Schedule, for each form submitted complete the fields for the form name, form number, form type. The form(s) must be included in the “Attachment” column on the relevant lines of the schedule.
  6. Additional information on Free Trade Zone policies is available on our FAQ section here.

III - Review Standards Checklists and Compliance Questionnaires

Review Standards Checklists

To assist you in preparing filings, the Department has developed review standards checklists and compliance questionnaires, lists of which can be found within the filing rules and submission requirements for the relevant types of insurance. Note – the “types of insurance” are based upon annual statement lines of business and the Product Coding Matrix. The attachment of the appropriate Review Standards Checklist is mandatory for all filings submitted through SERFF pursuant to Supplement No. 5 to Circular Letter No. 11 (1998).

These checklists and compliance questionnaires are intended to provide guidance in regard to many of New York's minimum requirements. Please see additional information and instructions below the table.

*Please note that the Review Standards Checklists, Compliance Questionnaires, Forms and Optional "Speed to Market" Checklists forms linked below have been revised as of October 2020. As these are subject to ongoing updates, please always check to make sure you are using the current version in SERFF.

Lines of Business

TOI

Aircraft

22.0000

Boiler & Machinery

27.0000

Burglary and Theft (Commercial Crime)

26.0000

Commercial Automobile (Liability and Physical Damage)

20.0000

Commercial Multi-Peril

5.0000

Credit (Credit Personal Property)

28.0000

Fidelity

23.0000

Financial Guaranty

10.0000

Homeowners

4.0000

Inland Marine (Other Commercial Inland Marine)

9.0005

Inland Marine (Other Personal Inland Marine)

9.0006

Medical Malpractice

11.0000

Mortgage Guaranty

6.0000

Other Liability (Commercial General Liability)

17.0001

Other Liability (Commercial Umbrella/Excess)

17.0020

Other Liability (Personal Umbrella/Excess and Comprehensive Personal Liability)

17.0003 / 17.0021

Other Liability (Directors & Officers Liability)

17.0006

Other Liability (Professional Liability and Errors & Omissions)

17.0019

Other Lines of Business (Credit Card, Debit Card or Checking Account Group Policies)

33.0000

Private Passenger Automobile (Liability and Physical Damage)

19.0000

Products Liability

18.0000

Property (Commercial) Review Standards

1.0000

Surety

24.0000

Workers' Compensation

16.0000

Workers' Compensation & Employers Liability (Excess Workers' Compensation)

16.0003

These Review Standards Checklists list the categories of review standards that a filing will be expected to evidence, and must be fully completed. Documents submitted in filings made through SERFF should provide “bookmarks” to the location(s) within their filing of the provisions that comply with the requirements. If the submission is limited to minor revisions to previously approved programs, endorsements, etc. that do not include changes to regulatory requirements, insert a brief explanation on the first page of the checklist indicating the reason(s) the review standards are not applicable.

Please be advised that compliance with the review standards checklists or compliance questionnaires alone does not guarantee approval of any filing. If you have questions regarding completion of the checklists or compliance questionnaires please contact the Department representative shown above.

An applicable set of review standards checklists and the related compliance questionnaires should be completed for each coverage part included in the filing.

To complete each Review Standards Checklist, please follow these instructions:

  1. Whenever the insurer determines that all or part of a review standards checklist is not applicable to a filing due to the nature of the submission, it may use the space available on the top of the first page to so indicate and explain. Where additional comment is needed it should be included in the filing memorandum.
  2. Column One lists the categories of review standards that the filing will be expected to evidence. Where compliance is not applicable to all parts of the filing an explanation should be provided.
  3. Column Two provides the statutory or regulatory references for each requirement contained in the review standards.
  4. Column Three includes an explanation of the specific requirement standard that must be met in order to comply with the item(s) reference in Column Two. This may include a link where such specific requirements are explained or discussed in the form of direction to a compliance questionnaire or web page(s).
  5. Column Four must be completed for each of the categories indicated in order to identify the location of compliance within the filing. If the compliance is required in more than one location in the filing, attachments may be used for further explanation. Where compliance is not applicable to all parts, an explanation should be provided.

As an example, if a filing contains forms for Commercial General Liability coverage (written on an occurrence basis with defense outside limits) and Directors and Officers and Employment Practices Liability coverage parts (written on a claims-made basis with defense within limits), the insurer must complete and submit the following forms, review standards checklists, and compliance questionnaires:

  1. Two “Commercial Liability Review Standards Checklists” (one for Commercial General Liability form and one for Employment Practices Liability Coverage Part)
  2. One “Directors and Officers Review Standards Checklist” (for the Directors and Officers form)
  3. Three “Commercial Liability Insurance Form Filing Compliance Questionnaires” (for the Commercial General Liability form, Directors and Officers form, and Employment Practices Liability Coverage Part)
  4. Two “Claims-Made Policies Form Filing Compliance Questionnaires” (one for Directors and Officers Coverage Part and one for Employment Practices Liability Coverage Part)
  5. Two “Defense-Within-Limits Form Filing Compliance Questionnaires” (one for Directors and Officers Coverage Part and one for Employment Practices Liability Coverage Part);
  6. One or more “Commercial Lines Cancellation & Nonrenewal Form Filing Compliance Questionnaires” (one compliance Questionnaire for each form that contains separate cancellation and nonrenewal provisions); and
  7. One or more “Supplementary Form Information” (if needed).

Form Filing Compliance Questionnaires

As previously noted, submission of available compliance questionnaires is mandatory if the contents of the filing refers to or should have referred to a specific review standard listed in the review standards checklist.

Title and Link

Instructions

Claims Made Policies Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains one or more forms written on a Claims-Made basis.

Commercial Auto Declarations Page Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

Complete this compliance questionnaire if the filing contains a declarations page for Commercial Automobile.

Commercial Auto Liability and Physical Damage Coverages Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains one or more forms that provide coverage for Commercial Automobile Liability and/or Physical Damage.

Commercial Liability Insurance Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing containing forms for Commercial Liability (except Commercial Automobile Liability, which has its own separate compliance questionnaire). This also includes, but is not limited to, Legal Services, Directors & Officers, Employee Benefits, Commercial Excess, Commercial Umbrella and Employment Practices insurance and policies issued to Purchasing Groups.
If the form contains Legal Services insurance, the Legal Services Insurance Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire should also be completed.

Commercial Lines Cancellation and Nonrenewal Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire (NYIL §3426)

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any Commercial lines filing that contains (or should contain) cancellation and nonrenewal provisions.

Commercial Lines Property Insurance Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing containing Commercial Property forms including, but not limited to, Group Property policies, NYPIUA policies, and Credit Property policies. For Credit Property forms, the Credit Property Insurance Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire should also be completed. Note also that this compliance questionnaire does not apply to Commercial Auto Physical Damage coverage. Complete the Commercial Auto Liability and Physical Damage Coverages Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire for this line.

Consent-To-Rate Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains a request to charge a rate in excess of the rate on file, or an addition of a policy endorsement that restricts coverage without a corresponding reduction in rate (deemed an excess rate), pursuant to NYIL §2309.

Credit Card, Debit Card or Checking Account Group Policies Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains Credit Card, Debit Card or Checking Account Group forms.

Credit Property Insurance Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains Credit Property forms. In addition, the Commercial Lines Property Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire should also be completed.

Defense-Within-Limits Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains forms with a defense cost offset provision against the liability limits or the deductible, forms containing a separate defense limit for UST owners/operators, or forms providing Legal Services insurance.
If the form contains Legal Services insurance, the Legal Services Insurance Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire should also be completed.

Excess Workers' Compensation Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains forms and/or rates for Excess Workers' Compensation insurance.

Financial Guaranty Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains forms for Financial Guaranty insurance.

Forced Fire Insurance Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains forms for force placed fire coverage.

Gap Insurance Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains forms and/or rates for Gap insurance, including Lessor/Lender Gap policies and Consumer Gap policies.

Inland Marine Travel Property Insurance Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains coverage for Travel Property Insurance

Legal Services Insurance Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire (Regulation 162)

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains forms providing Legal Services insurance, including coverage for administrative proceedings, claims seeking injunctive or other non-pecuniary relief, and defense of allegations that are excluded.

Mandatory Hurricane Deductibles For Homeowners And Dwelling Fire Coverages Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any personal lines filing that adds a mandatory hurricane deductible as allowed by Regulation 159 [11 NYCRR 74.1(b)].

Mortgage Guaranty Form & Supplemental Rate Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This is a combined compliance questionnaire for Mortgage Guaranty forms and rates. If the filing contains both forms and rates, complete sections I and II. If the filing contains forms only, complete section I.

Personal Auto Cancellation and Nonrenewal Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire (NYIL §3425)

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any Personal Auto form filing that contains (or should contain) cancellation and nonrenewal provisions. For purposes of this compliance questionnaire, "auto" includes motorcycles and motor homes.
For all other Personal Lines insurance, complete the Personal Lines (other than auto) Cancellation & Nonrenewal Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire.

Personal Auto Declarations Page Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

Complete this compliance questionnaire if the filing contains a declarations page for Personal Auto. For purposes of this compliance questionnaire, "auto" includes motorcycles and motor homes.

Personal Auto Liability and Physical Damage Coverage Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire (Regulation 35-A)

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains one or more forms that provide coverage for Personal Automobile Liability and/or Physical Damage. For purposes of this compliance questionnaire, "auto" includes motorcycles and motor homes.

Personal Liability and Umbrella Insurance Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains forms for Personal Liability and/or Personal Umbrella.

Personal Lines (other than auto) Cancellation and Nonrenewal Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire (NYIL §3425)

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any Personal Lines (other than auto) form filing that contains (or should contain) cancellation and nonrenewal provisions.
For Personal Auto, complete the Personal Auto Cancellation & Nonrenewal Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire.

Personal Lines Property Insurance Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing containing Personal Property forms, including NYPIUA policies.

Product or System Group Policies Filing Compliance Questionnaire (Regulation 167)

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing containing rates and/or forms for Product or System Group policies.

Standard Fire Policy Form Filing Compliance Questionnaire (NYIL §3404)

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing containing the Standard Fire Policy.

Supplementary Form Information

This is simply a blank form that can be used to provide additional references to forms or comments pertaining to the filing that could not be provided in the other compliance questionnaires.

Rate Filing Compliance Questionnaires

Title and Link

Instructions

Consent-To-Rate Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains a request to charge a rate in excess of the rate on file, or an addition of a policy endorsement that restricts coverage without a corresponding reduction in rate (deemed an excess rate), pursuant to NYIL §2309.

Gap Insurance Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains forms and/or rates for Gap insurance, including Lessor/Lender Gap policies and Consumer Gap policies.

Excess Workers' Compensation Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing that contains forms and/or rates for Excess Workers' Compensation insurance.

Mortgage Guaranty Form & Supplemental Rate Filing Compliance Questionnaire

This is a combined compliance questionnaire for Mortgage Guaranty forms and rates. If the filing contains both forms and rates, complete sections I and II. If the filing contains rates only, complete section II.

Personal Auto Multi-Tier Filing Compliance Questionnaire (NYIL §2349; Regulation 150)

This compliance questionnaire should be included in any filing containing a Multi-Tier program for personal automobile policies.

Product or System Group Policies Filing Compliance Questionnaire (Regulation 167)

This is a combined compliance questionnaire for Product or System Group forms and rates. If the filing contains both forms and rates, complete all sections of the compliance questionnaire. If the filing contains rates only, complete sections III and V.

Rate Filing Sequence Checklist

This checklist is mandatory for all rate, rating plan, and rating rule filings. Please refer to the checklist and the related instructions

Supplementary Rating Information

This is simply a blank form that can be used to provide additional references to exhibits or comments pertaining to the filing that could not be provided in the other compliance questionnaires.

Workers' Compensation Managed Care Premium Credit Programs Filing Compliance Questionnaire

Complete this compliance questionnaire for any Workers' Compensation program providing a Managed Care Credit.

IV - Form Schedule

The SERFF form schedule must be completed for all form filings.

Each form must be listed individually on the form schedule. All form schedule fields must be completed: form name, form number, edition date, form type and attachments. The form must be included in the “Attachment” column on the relevant lines on the schedule. If a single attachment on the schedule contains more than one form, the filing will be rejected.

A sample of a completed Form Schedule is shown below:

Form Count: 2

Schedule Item Status

Form Name

Form Number

Edition Date

Form Type *

Action *

Action Specific Data

Readability Score

Attachments

08-30-2020

Name of Endorsement

12345

12 06

Endorsement/
Amendment/
Conditions

New

 

40

Attachment12.pdf

08-30-2020

Name of Endorsement

6789

12 06

Endorsement/
Amendment/
Conditions

Replaced

Previous Filing #

R2019009876

40

Attachment67.pdf

Replaced Form #

678. 06 05

V - Rate/Rule Schedule

The rate/rule schedule (including all rate data fields) must also be completed for all rate and rating rule filings (This includes adoption of rate service organization loss cost, rating plans, rating rules, symbols, deductibles, classifications, individual risk submissions, territories and other rate/rating rule filing.) with the exception of non-rating rule filings.

The company must select “yes” for the question “Add Rate Data” to display the rate data fields. Below is a screen print of the question.

Filing Instructions - Add Rate Data screenshot

D. Add Rate Data:

Complete all fields for each company included in the filing:

  • Overall percentage of last rate revision: This is the statewide average of the last percentage change implemented in the state.
  • Effective Date of last rate revision: This is the implementation date of the last overall percentage rate impact.
  • Filing Method of Last Filing (Prior Approval, File & Use, etc): This is the review method for which the last filing was submitted. See State Specific Requirements.
  • Overall % Rate Impact - This is the statewide average percentage change to the current rates for the coverages included for each company.
  • Written premium change for this program - This is the statewide change in written premium based on the proposed overall percentage rate impact for each company.
  • # of policyholders affected for this program - This is the number of policyholders affected by the overall percentage rate impact for each company.
  • Written premium for this program - This is the statewide written premium for each company.
  • Maximum % Change & Minimum % Change
    • If all the policyholders get increases, then the maximum change is the largest increase and the minimum change is the smallest increase.
    • If all the policyholders get decreases, then the maximum change is the smallest decrease and the minimum change is the largest decrease.
    • If some of the policyholders get increases and others get decreases, then the maximum change is the largest increase and the minimum change is the largest decrease.
  • Overall percentage rate impact for this filing: This is the statewide average percentage change to the accepted rates for the coverages included in the filing. This field only needs to be completed for group filings.
  • Effect of Rate Filing—Written Premium Change for this program: This is the statewide change in written premium based on the proposed overall percentage rate impact. This field only needs to be completed for group filings.
  • Effect of Rate Filing—Number of policyholders affected: This is the number of policyholders affected by the overall percentage rate impact. This field only needs to be completed for group filings.

If there are multiple companies on a filing, the Overall Rate Information (Premium and Policyholders) will automatically calculate for the user.

For rate, rating rule or adoption of rate service organization filing that results in no rate impact or a zero rate impact for the company, and for filings for new programs, the company should select “yes” to for Add Rate Data and indicate “0” for all the rate data fields which require rate change information.

Each rate/rule page must be listed individually on the Rate/Rule Schedule. The rate pages, and/or rule pages must be included in the “Attachment” column on the relevant lines on the schedule. If a single attachment on the schedule contains more than one rate/rule page the filing will be rejected. However, if the company is submitting an entire rating manual for our review, the rating manual may be included as one attachment in the Rate/Rule Schedule. The rate/rule pages for an adoption of a rate service organization does not have to be listed and attached to the Rate/Rule Schedule except for adoption of rating plans and loss costs. For rating plans, a copy of the rating plan must also be submitted and attached to the Rate/Rule Schedule. For adoption of loss costs, the rate/rule page(s) containing the proposed Loss Costs Multiplier(s) must be attached to the Rate/Rule Schedule.

VI - Credit Scoring Model Filings

The Department recommends that the company submit credit scoring model filings and any revisions as a stand-alone file. Credit scoring model filings and any revisions must be included in the Rate/Rule Schedule. For filings to adopt credit scoring models from a third party without any modifications, neither the model nor the model documentation have to be listed on the Rate/Rule Schedule. Pursuant to Section 2806(b) of the New York Insurance Law, any portion of the filing relating to credit information is not subject to disclosure under Article 6 or Article 6A of the Public Officers Law. If the filing is a stand-alone filing to adopt a credit scoring model, the company should mark the entire filing as confidential. Article 28 of the Insurance law, Regulation 182 (11 NYCRR 221) (Limitations Upon and Requirements for the Use of Credit Information for Personal Lines Insurance) and Circular Letter No. 2 (2005) provide additional requirements regarding the submission of credit scoring model filings and any revisions. One of these requirements is submission of the Insurer Credit Information Compliance Certification Form, available here.

VII - Supporting Documentation

All other documentation should be attached under the Supporting Documentation tab. Such documentation may include side-by-side comparisons, actuarial support, and checklists.

If a new form(s) or endorsement(s) modifies existing policy provision(s) currently in effect, be sure to include in the Filing Description or an explanatory memorandum a discussion of the policy provision(s) which will be affected as well as a copy of the current policy provision(s). In addition, a side-by-side comparison of the new form(s) and existing policy provision(s) should be provided. If the filing is a non-rating revision to existing form(s), territories, classification(s) or rule(s):

  • Except for simple, non-substantive changes, a side-by-side comparison of the form(s) or rule(s) being proposed and those currently in use in New York, with all changes clearly marked and explained in the Filing Description and/or explanatory memorandum must be included.
  • Revisions to classifications and territories must include a comparison between those currently on file (in New York) and those proposed.

Rate Filing Sequence Checklist

This checklist must be completed for any filing containing rates, rating rules, classifications, territories, or rating plans. Supplement No. 4 to Circular Letter No. 11 (1998) issued on August 9, 2002 amends the procedures for the filing of policy rules and rates by prescribing required exhibits. Insurers will continue to be responsible for developing their own exhibits, with the exception of the preformatted exhibits “Master List of Compliance Checklists” and “Rate and/or Rating Plan Compliance Certification“. These exhibits must be labeled according to the sequence numbering system of this checklist. The Rate Filing Sequence Checklist and exhibits should be filed in one component and bookmarked in order of appropriate exhibits contained in the filing. If you have questions or comments regarding the completion of the checklist, please contact Mr. Anthony Yoder, Supervising Actuary, by telephone at (212) 480-5500 or by email to Mr. Anthony Yoder.

Rate filings must include appropriate supporting information as outlined in the Rate Filing Sequence Checklist and Instructions to Rate Filing Sequence Checklist (linked in table above, Section III). Please note the relevant requirements contained in Section 2304 of the New York Insurance Law. For commercial lines filings subject to flex-rating under Section 2344, please refer to Regulation 129 (11 NYCRR 161). For personal auto filings subject to flex rating under Section 2350, please refer to Regulation 153 (11 NYCRR 163).

VIII - State-Specific Fields

The State Specific Fields must be completed for all filings. Please enter the appropriate code within the fields. In the event a field is not applicable, enter 0 into that field. Please refer to the following:

  • Speed-To-Market Field: enter code "98" for "Speed-To-Market" filings (see additional instructions below)
  • Terrorism Exclusion Field: enter code "46-01" for filings which includes forms, rates or rules for the Terrorism Exclusion
  • Mold (Fungi, Bacteria, Virus) Exclusion Field: enter code "46-02" for filings which includes forms, rates or rules for the Mold Exclusion
  • Rate/Rule Schedule Tab: the “Add Rate Data” button must be changed to “yes” for all rating rules and rate filings in order for the appropriate fields to be completed. Please enter “Yes” for filings with the rate data fields completed and “No” for all other filings

IX - “SPEED-TO-MARKET” Filings

To make "SPEED-TO-MARKET" filings, please follow the procedures described in Supplement No. 3 to Circular Letter No. 11 (1998) and the instructions contained in the Master List of Review Standards Checklists and Compliance Questionnaires. SERFF filings, as noted above, must be submitted with the appropriately completed review standards checklists and compliance questionnaires.

Additional requirements for a SERFF filing to be considered as being submitted on a Speed to Market basis are:

  • completion by an officer of the appropriate compliance certification forms (the link is located in the Review Standards Checklists)
  • completion of the Master List of Review Standards Checklists and Compliance Questionnaires
  • the Filing Description on the General Information tab in SERFF must clearly state that the filing is being submitted on a "Speed to Market" basis
  • the filer must enter code “98” - “Speed to Market” filings in the State Specific field

NOTE: The optional "Speed to Market" filing procedures do not apply to rate filings for the following lines of business: (i) Personal Automobile; (ii) Public Automobile; and (iii) Workers Compensation; and (iv) Physicians" & Surgeons" Medical Malpractice Liability.

Documents Requiring Signatures of Authorized Officers

Required Signature of Authorized Officer

A Speed-To-Market Filing requires the signature of an authorized officer of the company on the "Speed-To-Market" certification form(s). The Explanatory Memorandum for a filing does not require an officer's signature.

Submission by an Officer or other Company Representative:

Creation of Electronic Signature

If an officer or another person transmits the "Speed-To-Market" filing via SERFF, the "Speed-To-Market" certification form(s) signed by an officer must be attached as part of the filing. Please note that when submitting a "signed" electronic document, the Department is only able to accept the signature if it is electronically scanned from a wet signature and attached to the form or rate filing which is sent to the Department.

If the submission contains scanned or 'pictured' documents, they should be separated from the converted PDF file.

Responsibilities of the Officer and the Insurers

The Department will hold the officer whose electronic signature is affixed to the "Speed To Market" certifications responsible for the representations made therein, to the same extent that the person would be held responsible were his or her wet signature affixed to a paper certification. In addition, the insurer, on whose behalf the electronic SERFF filing is being made, will be held responsible by the Department for, and be bound by, the electronic signatures of those officers to whom it has given authority to sign the electronic certifications as to the representations contained therein. Insurers are expected, in light of their responsibilities in this regard, to implement internal controls and procedures for the utilization of electronic signatures in this context to protect against unauthorized use and, to maintain a record of those officers who have been given authority to sign these certifications electronically for the insurer.

Mandatory "SPEED TO MARKET" Forms

The forms contained in this table are mandatory for, and should only be used with, "Speed to Market" filings. Do not include these forms in filings submitted for review on a regular basis.

Form Title & Link

Instructions

Master List of Review Standards Checklists and Compliance

This form is required for all "Speed to Market" filings. Detailed instructions on how to complete the form are contained within the form itself.

Policy Form Compliance Certification

This certification must be included in any "Speed to Market" filing that contains forms .

Rate and/or Rating Plan Compliance Certification

This certification must be included in any "Speed to Market" filing that contains rates, rules, classifications, territories or rating plans.

 

X - Individual Risk Submission

Insurers are required to submit individual risk rate filings for prior approval for "a" rated risks that, upon renewal, will have a rate effect greater than +/-30% of the expiring premium, and consent-to-rate filings made in accordance with Section 2309 of NYIL. Pursuant to Circular Letter No. 4 (1996), insurers are not required to submit rate filings for policies covering individually rated commercial umbrella and other "a" rated risks that are not subject to prior approval. In lieu of individual risk rate filings in this instance, insurers are required to retain in the individual policy file the supporting information that would otherwise be provided in a properly completed form 129-C,contained in Circular Letter #19 (1992). Such information must be available for inspection by the Department for a period of five years from the date the policy is issued.

XI - Errors in Filing Submission

The Department has noted that some companies are not utilizing the SERFF design features as instructed in the SERFF Industry Manual. Some errors that have been noted are:

  1. The Form Schedule, Rate Data, or Rate/Rule Schedule have not been completed.
  2. For adoption or delayed adoption of RSO filings, the reference organization, reference title, and reference number fields are not completed on the General Information tab. These fields are required to be completed with the applicable RSO information.
  3. Companies have been using Note to Reviewer to attach filing submissions. Filing submissions should never be attached to a Note to Reviewer
  4. Forms, rates and/or rules are being attached under the Supporting Documentation tab. Forms, rates and/or rules are required to be listed and attached to the applicable Forms and/or Rates/Rules Schedule.
  5. Companies have been submitting filings that will result in a rate effect without properly completing the Rate Data portion of the Rate/Rule Schedule tab. On the Rate/Rule Schedule Tab, the "Add Rate Data" currently defaults to "No", the company must select "Yes" to display the rate data fields and properly complete them.

XII - Other General Instructions, Guidelines, Specifications and Prohibitions

Plan of Operation

Regulation 79 requires insurers to make a submission describing its plan of operation for establishing and adequately maintaining an automobile inspection system. The Department cannot accept submissions of these plans of operation via SERFF. Instructions for filing a Plan of Operation are available here.

The following is a summary of subjects that either must or must not be contained in your filings, and the required treatment of these subjects in New York. While these may not be "filing or submission requirements", the failure to address them in accordance with the instructions below will result in the rejection of your filing. 

NOTE: The following is not an exhaustive subject list. There may be other areas of concern that you may need to address upon completion of this Department’s review of the filing.

Examples of Prohibited Coverages

Punitive Damages and Corporal Punishment Coverages are not permitted in NY.

Commercial Policies

Pursuant to Section 3426(g)(2) of the New York Insurance Law, loss information must be provided by the insurer, at the insured's request, covering a period of years specified by the Superintendent by regulation or the period of time coverage has been provided by the insurer, whichever is less. Note: Since the Superintendent has not specified a period of time by Regulation, the company must provide the insured with loss information covering the period of time the insured has been with the insurer.

Computer Simulation Models

Pursuant to Circular Letter No. 7 (1998), the inclusion of computer simulation modeling results in the ratemaking process is not permitted.

Workers Compensation Drug Free Workplace Premium Credit:

The guidelines listed below must be followed when submitting a filing to the Department requesting a drug-free workplace credit. Note that requirements for an insured to qualify as a "drug-free workplace" are shown in item 9 below.

  1. In general, the maximum amount allowed for a drug-free rate credit is 5%. A request for a credit greater than 5% will be reviewed carefully by our actuaries and must contain specific statistical or judgmental support.
  2. Any approved rate modification will be effective for only four years. After four years, the actual experience will be reflected in the experience rating modification.
  3. The drug-free rate credit can only be applied to non-retrospectively rated policies.
  4. The discount should be applied on a multiplicative basis, after the experience modification and before premium discounts and expense constants.
  5. The insurer must verify from the employer the existence of a drug-free environment and explain in its filing how such verification will occur.
  6. The filing should include a copy of the format of the certification of a drug-free workplace that will be sent to all employers. The completed certification by the employer must be filed with the company for each year the modification is permitted under the program. If it is subsequently determined that the insured misrepresented its compliance with the drug-free workplace rules, the insured’s policy will be subject to an additional premium equal to the amount of credit previously granted.
  7. Policy language should include the cancellation and non-renewal guidelines in the New York Workers’ Compensation and Employers Liability Manual.
  8. The insurer must report annually to the New York Compensation Insurance Rating Board the total amount of the drug-free workplace rate modification for all policies, the standard earned premium and the net earned premium.
  9. The following constitute the minimum requirements the Department considers essential in for an insured to qualify as a drug-free workplace environment. These requirements should be included in the filing made to the Department as part of the insurer’s definition of a drug-free workplace:
    • Employers should give all employees a written policy statement notifying them of details of the program, including the consequences of testing positive for controlled substances.
    • An employer that requires an employee or job applicant to submit to a drug test must document the reasonable suspicions that warrant the testing and must provide a copy of the document to the employee upon request.
    • All employees working in safety sensitive positions, as legally allowed by the State, are subject to random urinalysis drug testing. An employee that is involved in an on- the- job accident that requires outside medical attention should submit to a drug test within a reasonable period of time.
    • In addition, the employer must ensure the integrity of the testing system as follows:
      • Specimens must be collected and documented in a manner that safeguards the privacy of the individual and in a manner that prevents substitution or contamination of the specimens.
      • A licensed and approved laboratory must conduct each initial and confirmation test (excluding the taking or collection of a specimen to be tested). If the drug test result is positive, an employee or job applicant may request that a portion of the specimen be re-tested at another certified laboratory.
      • The employee or job applicant must be informed of the test results and may submit information to the designated Medical Review Officer (MRO) explaining or contesting the test results.
      • Insurers, employers, laboratories, employee assistance programs, drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs and their agents must keep all information concerning drug test results confidential.

"Other Insurance" Provisions:

In the event that other valid and collectible insurance is applicable to a claim covered under the company's policy, the company may state that its POLICY will either contribute with or be excess over such other insurance in order to avoid duplication of payment on claims. However, the company may not exclude coverage under its policy in the event the insured has other valid and collectible insurance.