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Iowa May Expand Surplus Lines Role

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A Midwestern state may open up to suppliers of new types of accident and health insurance.

The Iowa Insurance Division is asking members of the public for comments about whether it should permit some types of accident and health insurance to be written in the nonstandard surplus lines market.

In 1993, Iowa regulators issued a bulletin prohibiting surplus lines agents from writing accident and health insurance.

“It has been brought to our attention that due to changes in the market place, there has been an increased call for coverage in areas such as high limit disability insurance and ‘special hazards’ coverage,” Roseanne Mead, an assistant insurance commissioner in Iowa, writes in a recent notice to parties interested in surplus lines. “These areas are reportedly not being covered in our standard market.”

The division is deciding whether it should propose 2009 legislation that ease restrictions on surplus lines agents’ ability to write accident and health insurance, Mead writes.

Comments are due June 18.