N.Y.: PIA-priority bill to update NYSIF introduced in state Assembly, association advocates for the change

April 18, 2023

For years, PIANY has campaigned for changes in the way the New York State Insurance Fund conducts business. Currently, NYSIF is the largest writer of workers’ compensation insurance policies in the state by a comfortable margin. In fact, it is one of the top 10 workers’ compensation carriers in the country—despite writing almost exclusively in New York state.

As the law stands right now

Despite the market-dominance enjoyed by NYSIF, it is not regulated like other workers’ compensation carriers. Unlike private carriers, NYSIF does not need to be licensed by the New York Department of Financial Services. In addition, NYSIF does not pay any compensation to insurance brokers who place business in the NYSIF. Those policyholders looking to exit NYSIF for another carrier will find that process complicated by a current rule that only provides with a narrow 30-day window in which to terminate a policy without penalty.

What could change

Right now, the current law makes working with NYSIF difficult for both the insurance-buying community and insurance agents. However, A.6256, which was introduced in the state Assembly earlier this month, would address many of the aforementioned issues by making several significant changes to the way NYSIF operates.

What does the bill do?

If passed into law, this bill would:

  • remove the licensing exemption that NYSIF currently enjoys under the law;
  • grant authority to the superintendent of the DFS to approve the rules adopted by NYSIF;
  • enlarge the purpose of NYSIF to allow the compensation of insurance brokers through the payment of commissions; and
  • remove the 30-day cancellation window, which would allow policyholders to cancel their policy at any time by giving written notice to NYSIF.

PIANY has long advocated for common-sense changes like these to NYSIF. PIANY enthusiastically supports A.6256 and the association would like to thank Assemblyman David Weprin, D-24, for sponsoring the bill.

Bradford J. Lachut, Esq.
PIA Northeast

Bradford J. Lachut, Esq., joined PIA as government affairs counsel for the Government & Industry Affairs Department in 2012 and then, after a four-month leave, he returned to the association in 2018 as director of government & industry affairs responsible for all legal, government relations and insurance industry liaison programs for the five state associations. Prior to PIA, Brad worked as an attorney for Steven J. Baum PC, in Amherst, and as an associate attorney for the law office of James Morris in Buffalo. He also spent time serving as senior manager of government affairs as the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, a chamber of commerce serving the Buffalo, N.Y., region, his hometown. He received his juris doctorate from Buffalo Law School and his Bachelor of Science degree in Government and Politics from Utica College, Utica, N.Y. Brad is an active Mason and Shriner.

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