The Office of General Counsel issued the following opinion on April 25, 2005, representing the position of the New York State Insurance Department.
Re: Acting as insurance producer without a license
1. May an insurance producer licensed in New Jersey but not in New York sell a life insurance policy to a New York resident while in New Jersey?
2. May such producer sell such policy to a New York resident who telephoned the producer from New York?
1. As long as no insurance solicitation, negotiation, or other transaction pertaining to the sale of the insurance occurs while the insured is in New York, an insurance producer may solicit and sell insurance to a New York resident outside of New York State without being licensed by this Department.
2. When an insurance producer has a telephone conversation or other contact, including mail or e-mail, with a prospective insured in New York about selling insurance, such contact would be considered acting as an insurance producer in New York regardless of who initiated the contact. Therefore, the producer would need to have a New York State insurance license to engage in such activity, even if the subsequent delivery of the policy was made to an out-of-state location.
The inquirer is a licensed New Jersey insurance producer who lives and works in New Jersey. The inquirer has no New York insurance license.
N. Y. Ins. Law § 2101(a) (McKinney Supp. 2005) defines an insurance agent as one "who acts as such in the solicitation of, negotiation for, or sale of, an insurance . . . contract. . ."
N.Y. Ins. Law § 2101(c) (McKinney Supp. 2005) defines an insurance broker as one who or which "acts or aids in any manner in soliciting, negotiating or selling, any insurance. . . contract or in placing risks or taking out insurance, on behalf of an insured "
N.Y. Ins. Law § 2101(k) (McKinney Supp. 2005) defines an insurance producer as "an insurance agent, insurance broker, reinsurance intermediary, excess lines broker, or any other person required to be licensed under the laws of this state to sell, solicit or negotiate insurance."
N.Y. Ins. Law § 2102(a)(1) (McKinney Supp. 2005) prohibits a person or entity from acting as an insurance producer in this state without a license.
Any activity within the functions covered by licensing, such as a telephone conversation, mail or e-mail, about insurance with a client who is in New York during the solicitation, negotiation, or sale, requires a New York insurance license in order not to violate Section 2102.
For further information one may contact Associate Attorney Jeffrey A. Stonehill at the New York City Office.