Circular Letter No. 14 (2000)

May 1, 2000


All Licensed Fraternal, Life and Accident And Health, Title, Property and Casualty, Reciprocal, Financial Guaranty and Mortgage Guaranty Insurers, Medical Malpractice Insurance Association, Cooperative Property/Casualty Insurers Operating on the Advance Premium Plan, Assessment Cooperative Companies, The State Insurance Fund, United States Branches, Accredited Reinsurers of the Aforementioned Types of Companies, Hospital, Health, Medical, and Dental Service or Indemnity Article 43 Corporations, and Public Health Law Article 44 Health Maintenance Organizations


Furnishing of Fax Numbers in Connection with Complaints

As announced in the New York State Insurance Department's press release dated April 14, 1999, the Consumer Services Bureau "has launched an innovative on-line computer system to track and manage the resolution of consumer complaints. The new system, called Consumer's Information and Imaging Management System (CIIMS), fully automates the complaint processing and workflow of the Department's Consumer Services Bureau."

As part of the implementation of CIIMS, new functionality has been introduced that enables the Consumer Services Bureau to fax complaints and inquiries, together with attachments, directly from CIIMS to insurers and HMOs. In addition, responses to the Department can be faxed directly into CIIMS.

In order to initiate this new functionality, and in addition to the requirements of Regulation 64, Part 216.4(c) and Circular Letter 11 (1978), each Insurance Company and HMO licensed in New York State should provide us with a current fax number to which we may transmit complaints.

You are requested to acknowledge receipt of this letter and provide your fax number to Sandra Glindmyer, Principal Clerk, by emailing her at [email protected]. After the initial submission of a fax number, should an insurer or HMO change that fax number, we request that you notify the Department by emailing Ms. Glindmyer.

As a result of the above, the following changes will be made to the Bureau's exchange of information with insurers and HMOs:

1. Effective upon receipt of each company's current fax number, all complaints with file numbers constructed as CSB- (number) will be faxed to insurers and HMOs. A hard copy of the complaint will only be sent on these files if our system attempts to fax the file three times and all three attempts fail. YOU WILL CONTINUE TO RECEIVE HARD COPIES OF COMPLAINTS WITH FILE NUMBER CONSTRUCTION OTHER THAN CSB- (number).

2. Effective as of the date of this circular letter, the Bureau is also requesting that insurers and HMOs fax their responses to the files with the CSB- (number) construction to the Bureau at one of the following fax numbers: (212) 480-6282 or (212) 480-6283. PLEASE DO NOT FAX A RESPONSE AND ALSO MAIL A HARD COPY OF YOUR RESPONSE, UNLESS SPECIFICALLY ASKED. Please continue to mail hard copies of responses on all file numbers other than CSB- (number). Should you encounter problems in the transmission of faxes to this Department, please call the Preparation Unit at the number listed on the bottom of our letter to you.

3. If you are faxing your responses, it is imperative that you send a separate fax transmission for each file. If the system receives several responses in a single fax, only the first file will get the response. Follow up letters will continue to generate on all the other files.

4. In a further attempt to automate this process, we are requesting that every response to this Bureau include the author's fax number. It is also requested that each response provide the Department's file number along with the author's return mailing address and telephone number.

Any questions concerning this Circular Letter may be directed to Patricia Douglas, Senior Insurance Examiner at (518) 473-7933 or email to [email protected].

Salvatore Castiglione
Chief, Consumer Services Bureau