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Notice of Public Hearing on Long-Term Care Insurance, Including Premium Rate Increases and Policyholder Protections

7/28/2015 10:14:43 AM


Notice to Hold August 27, 2015 Public Hearing on Long-Term Care Insurance, Including Premium Rate Increases and Policyholder Protections 

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that, Mike Rothman, Commissioner of Commerce, will hold a public hearing pursuant to Minnesota Statute section 45.027(3)-(4) on the state of long-term care insurance and appropriate regulatory guidelines, including discussion of premium rate increase requests and policyholder protections.


PUBLIC HEARING


August 27, 2015 
Expected Start Time: 10:00 AM 
Location: Minnesota Department of Revenue 
Skjegstad Conference Room 
600 North Robert Street 
Saint Paul, MN 55101

Purpose of Hearing


The purpose of the hearing is to assist the Department’s fact-finding effort on long-term care insurance industry issues. The hearing will provide consumers, insurance companies, and other interested parties the opportunity to share statements or testimony about the state of the long-term care insurance industry including issues related to rate increase requests, claims handling, policyholder protections, and ideas for guidelines on regulatory matters for long-term care insurance.

Comments may be in writing or may be presented orally at the hearing. Please submit requests to testify and written comments by August 20, 2015 via mail or e-mail to the Minnesota Department of Commerce.

Minnesota Department of Commerce 
Attn: Long-Term Care Hearing Public Comments 
85 7th Place East, Suite 500 
Saint Paul, MN 55101 
commerce.commissioner@state.mn.us

Long-Term Care Insurance Background

Since its inception in the late 1980s, long-term care insurance has been marketed and sold to Minnesotans as a way for individuals to plan ahead to meet their needs for future costs associated with certain types of health or personal care services that may be necessary and are not covered under traditional health insurance plans.

Recently, long-term care insurance companies have requested larger rate increases with greater frequency as policies approach the time when policyholders on a fixed-income are nearing the stage in their lives when benefits may be used. Policyholders are often faced with making a decision to either pay increased costs to keep their policies, or to let their policies go.

In Minnesota, the process for an insurance company to increase premium rates is to file a request for the increase with the Commissioner for approval at least 60 days prior to the notice to the policyholders. An insurance company must meet the requirements under Minnesota law and receive approval from the Commissioner before it may increase the premiums for its current and new long-term care policyholders.

Hearing Details

The upcoming public hearing is part of a fact-finding effort to inform the Commerce Department regarding the appropriate regulatory approach for long-term care insurance. Among the issues to be discussed in the hearing will be the following:

  • What are the insurance industry’s challenges for pricing long-term care insurance?
  • What are potential solutions to ongoing rate increase requests to make the situation more stable and transparent for consumers and industry?
  • What are the challenges for policyholder protections, including claims handling?

The Department is working with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), the Society of Actuaries (SOA), and others to gather information on how to appropriately evaluate the long-term care industry. It is important that regulators obtain this information to help maintain appropriate regulatory guiderails and inform the public on the challenges in the long-term care insurance industry. Pending company-specific filings will not be discussed.

For further information regarding the hearing please contact Peter Brickwedde at (651) 539-1443 or email inquiries may be sent to Peter.Brickwedde@state.mn.us.

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