Weekly Dispatch: May 30, 2024

May 30, 2024


Don’t miss the most exciting event in the cosmos—the PIANJ | PIANY Annual Conference

Are you ready for the PIANJ | PIANY Annual Conference? While preregistration has closed, you can still purchase tickets at the door! This multiday conference, which will be held from June 2-4, 2024, at the Hard Rock Hotel Casino in Atlantic City, N.J., will be a constellation of some of the finest stars the insurance industry has to offer. While there, get to know professional agents in your orbit, pick up valuable trade techniques that will launch your practice to the moon and attend education courses, which have been approved for continuing-education credits in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania, for cosmic insurance knowledge.

NOAA predicts ‘above-normal’ 2024 Atlantic hurricane season

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration issued a forecast for an above-normal hurricane season in the Atlantic basin. NOAA’s outlook for the 2024 Atlantic hurricane season, which spans from June 1 to Nov. 30, predicts an 85% chance of an above-normal season, a 10% chance of a near-normal season and a 5% chance of a below-normal season. This above-normal activity has multiple causes, including, “near-record warm ocean temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean, development of La Nina conditions in the Pacific, reduced Atlantic trade winds and less wind shear, all of which tend to favor tropical storm formation.” To keep up with the season, check out PIA’s Hurricane Info Central, which has resources to help your clients and your agency during the hurricane season. If you would like to send customized materials to your clients, email PIA’s Design & Print.

N.Y.: Municipalities apply for pro-housing certification

On May 23, 2024, 213 New York municipalities applied to be certified as Pro-Housing Communities, including 61 local governments that already have been certified. This program encourages localities to contribute to housing growth in the state. As part of the FY 2025 Enacted Budget, an agreement was struck to make the Pro-Housing Community certification a requirement for up to $650 million in state discretionary funding.


Conn.: Property tax exemption for veterans law signed

Gov. Ned Lamont signed legislation on May 23, 2024, to create a state law that exempts the primary residence or motor vehicle of former members of the United States Armed Forces who have a permanent and total disability rating resulting from their active-duty service from property taxes. The exemption applies to a house that is owned by an eligible service member that is his or her primary residence. If an eligible service member does not own a house, the exemption will apply to one motor vehicle owned by the service member.

N.Y.: Circular letter issued encouraging p/c insurers to offer loss mitigation tool

The New York Department of Financial Services Superintendent Adrienne A. Harris issued a new circular letter encouraging property/casualty insurers to offer loss mitigation tools and services to policyholders for free or a reduced fee, such as smart water monitors and shutoff devices in connection with homeowners insurance policies. The guidance advises that, when including these tools and services in a policy, the policy should specify what is being offered, who is paying for the tools and services, and how much a policyholder must pay.


New overtime rule challenged by business groups

Last month, the U.S. Department of Labor issued a final rule that would expand overtime protections under the Fair Labor Standards Act. This ruling is set to go into effect Monday, July 1, 2024, and it will have a major impact on all sectors of the American economy. However, in reporting from Reuters, business groups filed a lawsuit to block the rule, claiming that it “will force many smaller employers and nonprofits operating on fixed budgets to cut critical programming, staffing, and services to the public.” The groups involved in the lawsuit include the National Federation of Independent Business, the International Franchise Association and the National Retail Federation.

N.Y.: New push for Grieving Families Act, same challenges

The bipartisan Grieving Families Act has received renewed support as the 2024 legislative session comes to a close: this is after it had been vetoed twice by Gov. Kathy Hochul in the 2022 and 2023 legislative sessions. The Grieving Families Act, also known as New York’s Wrongful Death bill, would amend the Estates, Powers, and Trusts Law, to authorize the families of wrongful death victims to recover damages for emotional anguish or grief, loss of love or companionship, loss of services and support, and the loss of nurture and guidance.

Vt.: Mandatory flood risk disclosure bill passes state Senate

The Vermont Legislature passed a significant piece of legislation to enhance transparency in real estate transactions and rental agreements concerning flood risk. The measure, which is part of a larger piece of legislation, would mandate that sellers, landlords and mobile-home park owners disclose flood hazard information to potential buyers and tenants. This bill aims to protect buyers and tenants by ensuring they are fully informed about potential flood risks associated with their property. By mandating clear and upfront disclosure, the bill is designed to prevent future disputes and financial losses related to flood damage.


Keeping an eye out for undisclosed operators

Sometimes, what you don’t know can hurt you: this is true in the case of undisclosed operators. Undisclosed operators, which are individuals who are not listed as regular operators of a motor vehicle in a policy, serve as an unknown quantity for underwriters. It’s a throw of the dice whether the driver is someone who obeys the rules of the road, or someone who doesn’t. To learn more about this class of operator and the risks they pose, PIA members can access Who is really driving Miss Daisy? in the PIA QuickSource library.

Conn.: PHL Variable Insurance enters rehabilitation

The Connecticut Superior Court, Hartford judicial district, placed PHL Variable Insurance Co., and subsidiaries into rehabilitation on May 17, 2024, and it appointed Connecticut Insurance Department Commissioner Andrew Mais as the rehabilitator. PHL Variable Insurance is licensed to write life insurance and annuity products in several states, including Connecticut, New Hampshire, New Jersey and Vermont. The rehabilitation order is the first step to developing and implementing a plan of rehabilitation to help protect consumers and ensure the availability of financially sound insurance. For additional information, see the press release and rehabilitation order.


N.J.: Commercial auto liability minimum limits to increase, effective July 1

New Jersey will raise the minimum limits for commercial automobile insurance customers in the state, effective Monday, July 1, 2024. Under P.L. 2023, c. 276, intrastate commercial vehicles with a gross vehicle weight of more than 26,000 pounds are required to carry minimum liability limits of at least $1.5 million. Commercial vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating of 10,001 or more pounds, but less than 26,001 pounds—will be required to carry at least $300,000 of liability coverage. PIANJ reached out to the Department of Banking and Insurance for clarification on the law, which PIA Northeast members can find here.

Register now

June 2-4, 2024: PIA New Jersey | PIA New York Annual Conference

Sunday, June 2, 2024: NJYIP Nitecap—part of the PIA New Jersey | PIA New York Annual Conference

Tuesday, June 4, 2024: NJYIP Fun Run to benefit Special Olympics New Jersey

Thursday, June 13, 2024: PIWA Spring Reception—sponsorships are available

Tuesday, June 18, 2024: CTYIP Golf Open

Monday, Aug. 5, 2024: NY-YIP Golf Open

Save the date

Thursday, July 25, 2024: NJYIP Networking Reception

Thursday, Aug. 29, 2024: New Hampshire Symposium

Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2024: NY-YIP Capital Region Fall Reception

Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2024: NJYIP Holiday Social

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