NAIFA - North Dakota  

President's Message

Local Reports

2012 State Convention


Professional Development

Health Care Reform Review

Government Relations




Print Friendly and PDF Dakota Advisor
Summer 2011


Presidents Message
by Pat Saltsman, CLTC

Greetings to all my fellow agents!!!

I realize I have big shoes to fill as Keith did a great job for two years.  Thank you Keith for giving us two years of your life in making sure our industry continues to grow and that the younger agents will have a career.  I hope I can lead our NAIFA as well as you did.

 So begins a great year and I am really excited with all that we will accomplish!!! 

 First of all, I ask that you keep our fellow NAIFA-Minot members in your prayers as we have 12 members that have been affected by the flood.  Their homes and offices are lost.  We have established a fund that accepts donations to help them out, so if you would like to contribute, send a check payable to NAIFA to Nancy and we will give it to the association.  They can distribute it however they choose.  I don’t know if you have seen pictures, video or gone there to experience first hand but they need us……  So I am asking us to step up to the plate.  I figured we raised circa $15,000 for children in Afghanistan at our Minot convention, we should be able to get that or more for our fellow NAIFA-Minot members.

 As we all know, membership is our number one priority.  We need to have a strong unified voice and in order to do that, we need numbers.  We all know numbers speak volumes.  Do you know why AARP is so powerful in Washington, because old people band together!!!  Bottom line - be passionate about your industry.  Sell it like you would sell one of your products.  If you work in an office – ask your coworkers “Do you belong to NAIFA-ND?” if not, let them know why it is so important.  We are agents, we know how to sell products we believe in – and we believe in our association, so let’s sell it!  We may not be old, but we can still band together!

 Marc Siverson has agreed to be the state membership chair, so expect a call or visit from him.  Marc and I have been working together to get some articles and information on what is going on in the industry to help you recruit members.  Marc is very excited about increasing our membership and will do what is needed to get it done. 

 I strongly encourage all of you to take the online academy through the National NAIFA website.  It has 6 sessions that you take at your own pace.  I really appreciated them as the first one who gave the history of NAIFA and that was an eye opener!!  We have quite a history and have been very instrumental and active in Washington.  You say, geez Pat that is not a news flash.  Okay, then check it out yourself and see if you learn anything new……I will bet you will.  So please make it your goal to go through the online academy and learn about your industry!!! 

 The first Tuesday of every month, the 7 local presidents and I have a conference call.  If there is anything that you would like us to discuss or share with the other associations please let your president know so he/she can put it on the agenda.  This is YOUR association so YOU have a voice and we will listen.

 One last thing I would like to talk about is the National and State conventions .  We have an opportunity to meet face to face with to our representatives in Washington at our National Convention  September 10-14th.  We ask that two delegates from each association join us in Washington DC for this great convention.  The state board has come up with money to help with expenses for people to attend. 

 The state convention will be in Grand Forks May 2-4th, 2012.  Put it on your calendar now as Grand Forks is going all out to welcome us and lining up some great speakers/sessions. 

 My fellow agents, I am excited to be your state President and want to increase our membership and with all your help, WE can achieve this. 

 Let’s make it a great year.

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         NAIFA-ND 2012 State Convention

The 2012 NAIFA-ND State Convention will be held in Grand Forks at the Ramada Inn on May 2-4, 2012. Mark your calendars and plan to attend!!

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NAIFA - Minot

By Jim Simons, President

 As I begin my year as NAIFA-Minot Association President I want to start out by thanking Lyle Kraft and his board for the great job they did in 2010-2011.  We had excellent CE at our meetings and we were instrumental in furthering the outstanding relationships we have with our local legislators.  My biggest concern for this year is the impact of the flooding in our area.  Twelve of our forty members either had their home, office or home and office flooded.  Most did not have flood insurance.  We have asked for assistance from NAIFA National in the form of a reprieve of dues for the year for these twelve members.  Keith Phillips, NAIFA-ND past president has started a fund for Minot.  We are very grateful for his concern and leadership.  I ask for everyone’s support in this effort, especially from my fellow advisors in Minot.  If you were fortunate enough to not be directly affected by the flooding to reach into your pockets and send your donation to NAIFA-ND 1811 E Thayer Ave Bismarck, ND 58501. 

 We have a full year of CE planned for each of our monthly membership meetings.  I am scheduled to represent the local association at this year’s NAIFA Convention in Washington DC.  I am looking forward to meeting with our members in Congress and discussing those issues which affect us most.

 For those of you who have not completed the NAIFA on line Leadership Academy I can’t over emphasize how important this is.  The training is excellent and covers the most important areas of our business as leaders. 

 I look forward to working with everyone in our local and our state association as well as our friends at NAIFA National.  Let’s have a great membership year!

 NAIFA - Lake Region
by Harlynn Bjerke, President

The Lake Region September meeting will provide 3 hours of continuing education on Ethics - by an attorney, Social Services, and an administrator from a Long Term Care facility.  We are working on getting our APIC contacts up to date along with IFAPAC contributions. We will be promoting the Minot flood relief efforts, next year's State Convention in Grand Forks, and working on increasing membership.


 NAIFA - North Valley
by Shari Hanson, President

The NAIFA-North Valley association will be working hard this year to increase membership. We will be hosting the 2012 NAIFA-ND Convention and are working hard on securing great speakers.  As it has been several years since the convention was held in Grand Forks, we will make the return here spectacular and hope to have great attendance.  Please mark your calendars now for May 2-4, 2012 and plan to attend!!


NAIFA - Roughrider
by Todd Otto, President

We had a busy summer trying to get the next year’s budget, meeting schedule and other activities planned.  Mix in the distractions of helping our friends in Bismarck and Minot with the Flood Fight, and that doesn’t leave much time for the typical fun of summer!

 Meetings for the upcoming year have been moved to the 2nd Friday of each month beginning in September – still at Lady J’s.  Meetings will be as follows:  11:00AM Board Meeting, 11:30 General Meeting, 12:15 Lunch

 At this point, the plan is still for quarterly CE.  My understanding is that the NAIFA-ND may pay filing fees for a couple classes from the Commissioners of Insurance, Banking and Financial Services and also possibly one for State Legislators to come in and share Financial Services Issues in the Legislature – if successful, this may allow us to go back to some monthly CE and still keep our costs down.

 We held a Picnic in June, but didn’t get very good attendance since it fell on the same day as a couple other Picnic Activities for DSU and a Bank that were more prominently advertised.  Still working to identify and recruit new members.


NAIFA - Fargo-Moorhead
by Phil Haug, President

As we begin our new year of leadership I would like to thank and recognize the leadership from the past year.  Tim Deitemeyer has done a wonderful job of taking this organization to a new level with a renewed level of commitment and focus.  The work done by he and his leadership team have positioned us to grow our membership, commitment, and involvement for our local association.  Thank you Tim for your efforts and time dedicated to NAIFA and the FM Local Association!

 This year will present us with challenges that are not unfamiliar to our industry.  As we speak, talk out of Washington and our elected leaders is of balancing the budget and raising revenue.  As a nation, our years of spending must be addressed to ensure the future of our country, give our children and grand children the same opportunity to enjoy the same things we have come to value.   Less money will be spent and more money will be raised by our government if you listen to our elected leaders.  Our industry has benefited from proper tax treatment and the public initiative to take personal responsibility.  Life Insurance has been given tax favorability based off of a handshake with founding members of our organization and the President of the United States at the advent of the personal income tax.  Since then, process and procedure has changed over the years.  We no longer can rely on handshakes and promises, we have to be active and involved. The scope of our organization has also changed over that period to meet those challenges and has represented us well for decades and decades to come.   

 Today we are faced with headwinds similar to those we have always faced, only stronger!  It is our duty as professional advisors to advocate for our career and our industry.  It is a burden that cannot be ignored, pushed off, or delegated.  We as a group must come together to grow and grow our voice in the process.  One person working for a cause can start a movement, but a group can make it explode to prosperity.  We have the opportunity to grow our membership to levels that represent the commitment we all share for this noble profession.  There are several individuals who benefit from the initiatives that we fight for who are not members.  This year our challenge will be to introduce what we can do together to continue our prosperity for years to come.  I personally challenge each member to invite a guest to a NAIFA meeting and ultimately invite them to be a member this year. 

 Several of our members are reaching the second half of their career.  Each of us has a business that we are working on maintaining and growing.  If we are to all prosper, our business must be appreciating.  If you were to own a business and look to sell it, growing it will net us the largest sale price and create a legacy.  If the business were to be shrinking, we would expect to get less for our business.  NAIFA is similar.  In our drive to thrive, we must make our organization appreciate.  This is done through increasing our membership and involvement.  Each of us has made “promises” to our clients over the years.  Promises that we all fully expect to deliver on, we can and will do this.  It will take a level of commitment to your industry to do this.  The battles that we will face are won in the trenches, not on the sidelines.  Everyone needs to get into this for us to win.

 I have deep conviction that 2011 will be the year that revitalizes the NAIFA organization and the local FM Chapter.  Too much is at stake to let it go the other direction.  My wife and I are expecting our first child in the beginning of May.  As I am faced with the prospect of being a Father for the first time, new thoughts have entered my mind.  What will she be like?  What will she grow up to be?  Will she have the same opportunities that I had, or more, or less?  These things will play out with time and I hope that she has every opportunity she could ever want or need as she grows up.  I know that things that we do TODAY will help her many years down the road.  When she is entering her career choices, I want her to have the same industry to enter that we have today.  It will take involvement by all of this to happen.  I am sure that each of you has someone that you would like to get into the business with the same wishes.  We must work together today to create a future for the next generation as well as help ourselves grow.

 The part of our organization is in the first half of their career.  They face the same challenges that we all faced when starting.  Growing product knowledge, growing their business, finding their next prospect, paying their bills each month, things we have all gone through in our career.  These new Representatives have a hunger and a drive to take our industry to new highs.  They will also be protecting the next generation of our country.  We should all work to leave this career better than we entered it.  The promises you made will most likely be delivered by this next generation.  We are all in this together.  As a manager, nothing is more rewarding than bringing someone into the career and seeing them succeed.  As a NAIFA member, nothing is more rewarding than working to give them the same chance to succeed that you were given and I was given. LUTCF courses at our local level are educating our next top producers to help all community reach financial security through education and involvement.  LILI has started to develop new leaders who are members that will direct our organization for future years.  Those members are found by inviting new Reps to join our organization when they enter our career.  At a leadership convention in Washington DC a stat was shared with the group that rings loud in my head, 8 out of 10 NAIFA members are still in the business after 5 years in the business and 2 out of 10 NON-NAIFA members are in the business after 5 years.  Membership does matter!  When you find a new person entering our career, encourage them to join!  You may recruit the next Board Member or even National President!

 This year will be fun and challenging.  We have great momentum working in our direction and a passion for our career that will not be ignored.  As I enter my year as the local president, I look forward to working with all of you to reach our full potential.  I encourage everyone to recruit a new member, contribute to IFAPAC and make an effort to be an active member of NAIFA, too much is at stake not be involved. 

 Benjamin Franklin in his later years was quoted as saying, “The greatest act of unselfishness is planting an oak tree at 80 years old knowing you will never enjoy its shade.”  Our time is now, the opportunity is here, we all have the chance to plant our tree for our next generations!

 Thank you for your membership and commitment to our career, you are doing great things for generations to come!

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APIC - State

By Jim Simons, Chair

Your APIC committee has been very active from April-June 2011.  We had two meetings with Congressman Berg during his return to North Dakota in April.  We emphasized the issues provided by NAIFA.  Thank you to all who participated in the meetings in Bismarck and Fargo.  Be prepared to meet in the district offices during August.  We will keep you informed.  We conducted APIC Training with a teleconference Association Leadership Conference on July 21, 2011.  We discussed an APIC overview and provided sample APIC plans for each of the locals.  Please complete these plans and get them back to me by 30 September.  We also sent out the APIC contact lists for both the national and state level.  If you have a relationship with either a federal or state representative, make sure you notify your local APIC Chair.  Consider holding a legislative membership meeting this fall to highlight IFAPAC and APIC.  Invite national or state leaders or their staffers to your meeting.  There are district offices in Bismarck, Fargo, Grand Forks and Minot. 

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Professional Development
By Gregg Webster, Chair

Continuing Education (CE) is part of our career.  We need to continually improve, update, and stay current.  CE can be obtained in several ways; one of which is through participation in NAIFA meetings.

 The National NAIFA Meeting has several CE seminars.  Our State NAIFA Convention has and will continue to feature CE as part of the program.  Most local organizations offer CE when possible.

 Continuing Education in North Dakota and neighboring states has changed significantly in recent years.  While change can be difficult, it is a reality.  All CE must have prior approval.  Fortunately, the North Dakota Insurance Department responds relatively quickly.  Furthermore, the course presenter can change as the course provider chooses.

 Since all of our local NAIFA organizations are approved CE providers, the next step is to develop an outline and submit the course for approval.  If someone else has a course approved, check with them about offering the course.  There is an additional offering provision that saves the course filing fee.

 Some CE providers will come as a guest speaker for a meeting.  The ND Insurance Dept website lists all providers and approved courses.


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.Health Care Reform Review Committee
by David Middaugh

The Health Care Reform Review Committee chaired by Rep. George Keiser, and consisting of 15 Representatives (including NAIFA-ND member Jim Kasper) and 5 Senators met on Thursday, July 7th to review the status of North Dakota’s implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), with a focus on creation of a State Health Care Exchange.

Insurance Commissioner Adam Hamm gave the first testimony.  His presentation included:

 1)      An update of the status of State implementation of the Affordable Care Act

2)       2) An update of the status of Federal Health and Human Services (HHS) guidelines regarding the ACA, and

3)      3) A summary and discussion regarding the National Association of Insurance Commissioners proposed American Health Benefit Exchange Model Act.

 Commissioner Hamm commended the Committee for voting earlier to proceed with a State Exchange instead of opting for the National Exchange, but testified that HHS was soon releasing 800 pages of regulation regarding exchanges, and urged the Committee that, while planning for a State Exchange should continue, they should reserve their option to opt for the Federal Exchange, should the regulations prove to be too onerous.

 Lisa Carlson of Sanford Health then testified on the Utah Exchange, pointing out that it was established prior to ACA passing, and as such needs revisions to be ACA compliant.  But it is functioning in the small group market as a defined contribution plan approach, is agent friendly, and had agent backing.  Currently 94% of the small groups using the Exchange are done through agents, and 24% of the enrollees are people who previously had no insurance.

 Next there was a panel discussion with Brad Bartle representing Blue Cross of North Dakota, Geoffrey Bartsh, Medica, and Lisa Carlson, Sanford.  All indicated they see a substantial number of existing groups going through the Exchange after 1/1/14.

 The second panel discussion involved Dave Middaugh representing NAIFA-ND, Jerry Jurena, President of the ND Hospital Association, Courtney Koebele, ND Medical Association, and representatives of AARP and the ND Chamber of Commerce.

 Dave gave a 10 minute review of the role of the insurance agent, and the need to have insurance agents included in, and compensation by, the Exchange as they are in Utah.

 Comments were also given by Lisa Feldner, Chief Information Officer, Information Technology Department, regarding how other states are implementing Health Care Exchanges, and Amy Smith, Deputy State Health Officer State Department of Health, regarding applying for Federal Grants, and Maggie Anderson, Director Medical Services Division, Department of Human Services, regarding Medicaid management information system issues, the status of Rhode Island’s Medicaid block grant, and Medicaid eligibility under ACA.

 The 7 hour hearing was then adjourned, with the next Committee meeting scheduled for Friday, August 5th, in Fargo.

Copies of written testimony are available through NAIFA-ND.

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Government Relations
by Norbert Mayer, Chair

Below is a summary of the new laws affecting insurance companies and producers that went into effect on August 1, 2011

Financial Examinations

HB 1083 - Risk-based capital reports (26.1-03.1-03(1), 26.1-03.2-03(1)). This bill adds a trend test to the Company Action Level requirements for property and casualty insurers and for health organizations. The change will cause the RBC Company Action Level for property and casualty insurers to be triggered when the RBC ratio is between 200%-300% and the insurer's combined ratio (i.e., loss ratio plus expense ratio) is greater than 120%. For health organizations, the Company Action Level would be triggered with an RBC ratio between 200%-300% and a combined ratio greater than 105%. Current law already has a trend test for life insurers and property and casualty insurers writing only accident and health coverage.

HB 1121 - Confidentiality of actuarial opinion support documents (26.1-03-11.1 (3)). This billprovides confidentiality for the Actuarial Opinion Summary, Actuarial Report and supporting work papers underlying a Company's required Statement of Actuarial Opinion. Current law already provides this confidentiality for life insurers' actuarial documents; this bill extends that confidentiality to non-life insurers as well.

SB 2111 - Life and Health Insurance Guaranty Association (26.1-38.1-01, 26.1-38.1-02(12), (20) and (23), 26.1-38.1-05(1)(b), 26.1-38.1-05(2)(b)(4), 26.1-38.1-06(3), 26.1-38.1-06(14)(e), 26.1-38.1- 07(4),26.1-38.1-08(4),26.1-38.1-11, 26.1-38.1-15, 26.1-26.1-38.1-17. The key change in this bill will increase the benefit limits for specific lines of business that the North Dakota Life and Health Insurance Guaranty Association is obligated to pay in the event of an insurance company insolvency. The limits were increased from $100,000 to $300,000 for long-term care and disability insurance; from $100,000 to $500,000 for basic hospital, medical, surgical, and major medical policies; and from $100,000 to $250,000 for annuities, government retirement benefit plans and structured settlement annuities. The Guaranty Association limits for life insurance were not changed. Also, the bill specifies that Medicare Part C and Part D policies are not covered by the Guaranty Association; removes the annual $150 per member cap and the pro rata option for the Association's assessment of its administrative expenses and legal costs under the Class A assessment authority; requires the Guaranty Association to pay interest on a refund due to a member insurer at the rate earned by the Association; and requires the Guaranty Association's plan of operation to add policies and procedures for the removal of directors for cause and to address conflicts of interest.


HB 1162 - Administrative rules (28-32-08.2, 28-32-03(5), 28-32-10(1), 28-32-18(2)). An administrative agency shall attempt to make interim final rules known to every person who the agency can reasonably be expected to be affected by them. In addition to the existing notice requirements, an agency adopting emergency rules shall also provide notice to the chairman of the Administrative Rules Committee of the emergency rules. The Legislative Council shall publish the notice and emergency rules on its website. When an agency presents rules for Administrative Rules Committee consideration, the agency shall provide a fiscal note or a statement in its testimony that the rules have no fiscal effect.

Producer Licensing

HB 1123 - Surplus lines insurance (26.1-44-01, 26.1-44-01.1, 26.1-44-02, 26.1-44-03, 26.1-44-03.1, 26.1-44-04, 26.1-44-05, 26.1-44-06, 26.1-44-06.1, 26.1-44-08, 26.1-44-10, 26.1-44-11). This bill revised the law relating to surplus lines insurance to conform to requirements of the United States Nonadmitted and Reinsurance Reform Act of 2010 (NRRA). The law now applies only to the placement of surplus lines coverage, the regulation of surplus lines producers and the taxation of surplus lines premiums if the insured's home state is North Dakota. The new provisions address:
• Definition of home state
• Changes in qualifications of eligible surplus lines insurers
• Definition of exempt commercial purchasers and exemption from due diligence search requirements
• Changes to the recordkeeping and reporting requirements of surplus lines producers
• New consumer notice
• Taxation of multi-state policies

Federal law allows states to enter into a compact to allocate premium tax on multi-state policies. This bill adopts the Surplus Lines Insurance Multistate Compact (SLIMPACT) to allocate among the states the premium tax paid to the insured's home state. Ten states must adopt SLIMPACT before the compact is implemented.  This law became effective on April 19, 2011.

HB 1160 - Annuity suitability (two new sections to 26.1-34.2, 26.1-34.2-02, 26.1-34.2-03, 26.1-34.2-04). This bill is based on a recently-passed model law of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). It requires that in recommending to a consumer the purchase or exchange of an annuity, the insurance producer or the insurer must have reasonable grounds for believing that the recommendation is suitable for the consumer, which includes ensuring that the consumer has been reasonably informed of various features of the annuity, such as the surrender period, surrender charge, potential tax penalty, and expense fees. An insurer is required to establish a supervision system that is reasonably designed to achieve the insurer's and the insurer's insurance producers' compliance with these annuity suitability requirements. This law also requires every insurance producer engaged in the sale of annuity products to complete a one-time, four-hour training course to ensure that they are only recommending annuities that are suitable for the consumer based on the consumer's particular needs. The training must include information on the topics set out in the bill and must be completed by August 1, 2012. Insurers must verify that the producer has completed the training. Satisfaction of substantially similar requirements in another state will satisfy these requirements.

HB 1175 - Rebating (26.1-04-03(8), 26.1-04-06, 26.1-25-16). This law allows a limited exception to the state's anti-rebating laws. If the cost does not exceed an aggregate retail value of $50 per person per year, an insurance producer may give a gift, prize, promotional article, logo merchandise, meal, or entertainment activity directly or indirectly to a person in connection with marketing, promoting, or advertising the business. The term "person" means the named insured, policy owner, or prospective client or the spouse of any of these individuals, but the term does not include a certificate holder, child, or employee of the named insured, policy owner, or prospective client. An insurance producer may give a gift card for specific merchandise or services such as a meal, gasoline, or car wash but may not give cash, a cash card, any form of currency, or any refund or discount in premium. An insurance producer may not condition the giving of a gift, prize, promotion article, logo merchandise, meal, or entertainment activity on obtaining a quote or a contract of insurance. An insurance producer may make a donation in any amount to a nonprofit organization that is exempt from federal taxation under Internal Revenue Code Section 501 (c)(3) as long as the donation is not given as an inducement to obtain a quote or a contract of insurance.

Health Care Reform Bills

HB 1125 - Health care reform enforcement (new section to 26.1-02). This bill makes clear that the Commissioner has the authority to administer and enforce the provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). The bill also requires the Commissioner to provide regular updates to Legislative Management during the 2011-12 interim and submit any proposed legislation to Legislative Management for consideration at the special session.

HB 1126 - Health care reform exchanges (26.1-54). This bill requires that the Commissioner and the Department of Human Services plan for the implementation of an American health benefit exchange in North Dakota. The Commissioner may seek federal grant funds for the planning and implementation and adopt rules as necessary or desirable. The bill also requires the cooperation of other state agencies to ensure the success of the exchange. The bill also requires regular updates to Legislative Management.

HB 1127 - Health care reform external review, utilization review, and grievance procedures (26.1-03-01, 26.1-26.4-01, two new sections to 26.1-36, 26.1-36-44). This bill requires that health insurers must provide a utilization review (UR), grievance, and external review process that meets the minimum requirements of PPACA and its implementing regulations. If federal laws or rules relating to these processes are amended, repealed, or otherwise changed, the Insurance Commissioner shall adopt rules to ensure the process is in compliance with and equivalent to the federal requirements. The bill also provides that existing UR law applies only to grandfathered plans unless an insurer decides to apply PPACA requirements to a grandfathered plan. For independent external review, the bill provides application only to grandfathered plans. The bill also requires the Commissioner to provide regular updates to Legislative Management and submit proposed legislation at the special session.

HB 1165 - Health care reform insurance coverage not required (new section to 26.1-36). This bill provides that an individual cannot be required to obtain or maintain individual health insurance coverage, with some exceptions, unless required by a court. It is a response to the individual coverage mandate of PPACA.

HB 1252 - Health care reform study. This bill requires the Legislative Council to monitor the impact of PPACA, rules adopted by federal agencies as a result of that legislation, and any amendments to that legislation.

HB 1267 - Health care reform in special legislative session. This bill includes health care reform as a topic to be addressed in a special legislative session in November (along with redistricting).

HB 2309 - Health care reform PPACA likely unconstitutional (new section to 54-03). This bill declares that PPACA is likely not authorized by the U.S. Constitution, and that the Legislative Assembly shall consider enacting any measure to prevent its enforcement.

HCR 3015 - Health care reform sovereignty reaffirmed. This concurrent resolution reaffirms the state's sovereignty under the 10th Amendment to the Constitution and demands the federal government halt its practice of assuming powers and imposing mandates on the states for purposes not enumerated in the Constitution.

HCR 3016 - Health care reform repeal. This concurrent resolution urges Congress to repeal PPACA.

SCR 4005 -Impact of PPACA on CHAND. The Comprehensive Health Association of North Dakota (CHAND) is the high risk pool currently in place in North Dakota. Under PPACA, beginning in 2014, everyone will be eligible to purchase health insurance, so the necessity of the CHAND program is uncertain. This concurrent resolution directs a study of the impact of PPACA on CHAND, with a report to be provided to Legislative Management prior to when the 63rd Legislative Assembly convenes.

Life & Health (Non-Health Care Reform Bills)

HB 1135 - Trustees have insurable interest (59-09-13). This bill created ND.C.C. § 59-09-13, which clarifies that a trustee has an insurable interest in the life of another if the other person was the person who settled or created the trust, or if the person whose life was insured was a person for whom the settlor (the person who created the trust) could have obtained life insurance. The proceeds of the life insurance must be primarily for the benefit of trust beneficiaries who have an insurable interest in the life of the insured or who are closely related to the subject of the life insurance. The law is a product of the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws.

HB 1160 - Annuity suitability (two new sections to 26.1-34.2, 26.1-34.2-02, 26.1-34.2-03, 26.1-34.2-04). This law is based on a recently passed National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) model law and requires that in recommending to a consumer the purchase or exchange of an annuity, the insurance producer or the insurer must have reasonable grounds for believing that the annuity is suitable for the consumer, which includes ensuring that the consumer has been reasonably informed of various features of the annuity, such as the surrender period, surrender charge, potential tax penalty, and expense fees. An insurer is required to establish a supervision system that is reasonably designed to achieve the insurer's and the insurer's insurance producers' compliance with these annuity suitability requirements. This law also requires every insurance producer engaged in the sale of annuity products to complete a one-time, four-hour training course to ensure that they are only recommending annuities that are suitable for the consumer based on the consumer's particular needs. The training must include information on the topics set out in the bill and must be completed by August 1, 2012. Insurers must verify that the producer has completed the training. Satisfaction of substantially similar requirements in another state will satisfy these requirements.

SB 2075 - Excess assets in pre-need funeral service contracts (50-24.1-02.3). This law provides that any amounts in a pre-need funeral service contract that are not used for funeral or burial expenses must be returned to the estate of a Medicaid recipient, and are subject to recovery by Medicaid.

SB 2237 - Domestic abuse (26.1-04-03(7)). This law prohibits an insurer's consideration of an individual's history or status as a victim of domestic abuse in underwriting a risk or in paying a claim.

SB 2276 - Vaccine fund (new section to 23-01). This law created a program through which the state purchases vaccines through the federal vaccine purchasing contract which then furnishes the vaccines to public health units. A public health unit that receives the vaccines must administer them to program-eligible children and may not bill an insurer for the cost of the vaccine but may charge an administration fee.

Property & Casualty

HB 1142 - Agritourism liability (new chapter to Title 53). A new chapter of the North Dakota Century Code was created that provides that an agritourism participant assumes all inherent risks and permits agritourism operators the ability to use the defense of assumption of risk (for inherent risks) if registered with the Division of Tourism. Registration is effective for five years. Notice must be posted in a conspicuous place on the operator's premises and in the agritourism operator's contract that the operator is not liable for any injury to or for the death of a participant if the injury or death results from inherent risk.

HB 1174 - Medical records and bills cost (23-12-14,26.1-41-12). This law sets new caps on what a medical provider may charge for electronic copies of records and bills. A person may not charge more than $20 for the first 25 pages and 75 cents per page for every page beyond 25 pages for providing a copy of medical records or medical bills in paper or facsimile format to a basic no-fault insurer. If providing an electronic, digital, or other computerized format, a person may charge $30 for the first 25 pages and 25 cents per page after 25 pages for providing a copy of medical records or medical bills to a basic no-fault insurer. This charge includes any administrative fee, retrieval fee, and postage expense.

HB 1195 - Texting and driving (39-06.1-06(2), 39-06.1-09, new section to 39-08). This law prohibits texting while driving. It provides that a driver who is part of traffic may not use a wireless communications device to compose, read, or send an electronic message. This prohibition includes email, text, and instant message.

HB 1256 - Graduated drivers license system (39-01-01, 39-06-03(1), 39-06-04, 39-06-17, 39-06.1-09, 39-06.1-10(3)(b), new section to 39-08). Beginning January 1, 2012, this law provides that an individual who is not yet 18 years of age is not eligible for a license until that individual has had a learner's permit issued for at least 6 months or at least 12 months if under age 16. A restricted license is issued if the minor has successfully completed an approved driver's education course and has 50 hours of supervised driving in various driving conditions and situations that include night driving; driving on gravel, dirt, or aggregate surface road; driving in both rural and urban conditions; and winter driving conditions. Drivers with a restricted license may not drive between sunset or 9:00 p.m., whichever is later, and 5:00 a.m. with exceptions given for work, school, or religious activity. Individuals under age 18 may not operate an electronic communication device to talk, compose, read, or send an electronic message while driving except in emergencies or to prevent a crime.

HB 1308 - Rental car insurance secondary (26.1-40-17). This law provides that a person's own auto policy is primary when a vehicle is rented in North Dakota. Previously, the rental car company's insurance was primary.

HB 1452 -Injury to trespassers (new). This law provides immunity for landowners for injury to trespassers with exceptions. Exceptions include willful injury, knowledge of the trespasser's presence and artificial attractive nuisance.

SB 2062 - Certificates of insurance (new chapter to Title 26.1). This law relates to property and casualty certificates of insurance, requiring filing of forms with the Commissioner and setting parameters for use of certificates of insurance for producers. Producers may sign only certificates of insurance that are filed and approved by the Commissioner. A person may not demand, require, or issue a certificate of insurance that contains any false or misleading information concerning the policy of insurance to which the certificate makes reference. Producers may not knowingly prepare or issue a certificate that purports to alter, amend, or extend the coverage provided by the policy.

SB 2222 - Crop insurance proposals, development grants (new). This bill creates a new chapter that creates a crop insurance development board consisting of seven individuals to assess the feasibility and desirability of proposals submitted by individuals and public and nonpublic entities pertaining to the development and implementation of crop insurance instruments. The board may award grants to assist with future actuarial and development costs.

SB2258 - Child support data match (new section to 14-09, 26.1-02-28, 34-15-03, 34-15-04, new section to 35-34,35-34-02,35-34-03,35-34-04, 35-34-06(1), 35-34-09, 35-34-10). Insurance companies may coordinate with the Department of Human Services to exchange insured information for the purpose of liens against claimants owing child support. Some of the sections of this Act become effective on January 1, 2012, and others become effective on August 1, 2013.

SB2295 - Recreational immunity (53-08-01,53-08-02,53-08-03(2)). This bill clarifies a landowner's duty of care for recreational events. Subject to certain exceptions, a land owner owes no duty to keep premises safe for recreational purposes regardless of the location and nature of the recreational purposes and whether the entry or use by others is for their own recreational purposes or is directly derived from the recreational purposes of other persons, or to give any warning of a dangerous condition, use, structure, or activity on such premises to persons entering for such purposes. Does not apply to persons entering land to provide goods or services, and does not apply to for-profit business ventures that directly or indirectly invite members of the public onto the premises for commercial purposes.

SB2346 - Restricted licenses for minors (39-06-17(3)). This bill provides that a minor with a restricted license or permit may drive not only a parent's car but also a grandparent's, sibling's, aunt's, or uncle's car. The parent, guardian, grandparent, sibling, aunt, or uncle at all times is responsible for any damages growing out of the negligent operation of the car by the child.

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by Marc Siverson, Chair

We just had our first Membership conference Wednesday 8/3/11 at 8:00 am.  About 75% of the membership committee were on the line.  I thought we hit upon a lot of ideas that we will enlarge upon before our next conference call on Wednesday 9/7/2011 at 8:00 am.

Some of the tentative plans discussed included:

  •              Making a brochure to show what the ND NAIFA chapter succeeded with the state legislative session.  This may show prospects what we can accomplish.

  •             Set times in each community to have 4-5 members visit prospects at their place of business and make a splash with some giveaways, brochures, information and letting them know we need them to help educate politicians on some of the issues on the forefront.

  •             All members will read the online Academy sessions for input.

  •             Look for the first step to get ball rolling effectively.

            A pretty good start and discussion for a first meeting.  We’ll have more positive experiences to report next quarter.!

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by Keith Phillips, Chair

By now, I am sure that most of you have heard of LILI. However, I also believe that there are many misconceptions as to what LILI really is. Most of you have formed your opinions on the LILI class from what you have heard. Unfortunately, this can be misleading.  The only way to really understand this class, is to participate on your own.  I think one of the problems, is the perception that taking LILI is like taking a magic pill that miraculously turns you into this amazing person.  Well, for a few, that might be partially true. On the flip side, there may be no truth to it what so ever.  As the saying goes, you only get out of something what you put into it.  This class does offer a great opportunity for you to grow both personally and professionally. But, you have to put in the effort to realize the rewards of the class.
I would encourage you to fgo onto the NAIFA web site and read about the LILI opportunities. Also, you can contact me, Nancy in the state office, or  Rene Haug, the moderator of the next class. Any of us would be happy to discuss LILI with you.
I would hope that each association take the time to identify potential candidates and forward there name to us. We can contact them and fill them in on the details and answer any questions that they may have. 
The ideal number of students for a class is 10.  The class is held one day a month for 6 months. The place and time will be determined by those who enroll in the class.
I challenge and encourage you to take the " LILI Experience"

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NAIFA-North Dakota - 1811 East Thayer Avenue - Bismarck, ND 58501 (701) 258-9525