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§33-12-24. Revocation, suspension or refusal to renew license; penalty.

(a) The commissioner may examine and investigate the business affairs and conduct of every person applying for or holding an insurance producer license, solicitor's license or excess line broker's license to determine whether such person has been or is engaged in any violation of the insurance laws or rules of this state or has engaged in unfair or deceptive acts or practices in any state.

(b) The Insurance Commissioner may place on probation, suspend, revoke or refuse to issue or renew an insurance producer's license, solicitor's license or excess line broker's license, or may levy a civil penalty or any combination of actions, for any one or more of the following causes:

(1) Providing incorrect, misleading, incomplete or materially untrue information in the license application;

(2) Violating any insurance laws, or violating any regulation, subpoena or order of the Insurance Commissioner or of another state's Insurance Commissioner;

(3) Obtaining or attempting to obtain a license through misrepresentation or fraud;

(4) Improperly withholding, misappropriating or converting any moneys or properties received in the course of doing insurance business;

(5) Intentionally misrepresenting the terms of an actual or proposed insurance contract or application for insurance;

(6) Having been convicted of or pleaded nolo contendere to any felony;

(7) Been convicted of or pleaded nolo contendere to a misdemeanor in connection with his or her activities as an agent, solicitor, or excess line broker;

(8) Having admitted or been found to have committed any insurance unfair trade practice or fraud;

(9) Using fraudulent, coercive, or dishonest practices, or demonstrating incompetence, untrustworthiness or financial irresponsibility in the conduct of business in this state or elsewhere;

(10) Having an insurance producer license, solicitor license, excess line broker license or its equivalent, denied, suspended or revoked in any other state, province, district or territory;

(11) Forging another's name to an application for insurance or to any document related to an insurance transaction or fraudulently procured a forged signature to an insurance application or any other document, knowing the signature to be forged;

(12) Improperly using notes or any other reference material to complete an examination for an insurance producer license;

(13) Knowingly accepting insurance business from an individual who is not licensed;

(14) Failing to comply with an administrative or court order imposing a child support obligation;

(15) Having a statutory lien recorded for failing to pay state income tax or comply with any administrative or court order directing payment of state income tax; or

(16) Obtained the license for the purpose of writing controlled business, as described in subdivision (7), subsection (a), section six of this article;

(c) In the event that the action by the Insurance Commissioner is to nonrenew or to deny an application for a license, the Insurance Commissioner shall notify the applicant or licensee and advise, in writing, the applicant or licensee of the reason for the denial or nonrenewal of the applicant's or licensee's license. The applicant or licensee may make written demand upon the Insurance Commissioner within ten days for a hearing before the Insurance Commissioner to determine the reasonableness of the Insurance Commissioner's action. The hearing shall be held within forty-five days and shall be held pursuant to section thirteen, article two of this chapter.

(d) The producer's license of a business entity may be placed on probation, suspended, revoked, refused or have civil penalty or any combination of actions, if the Insurance Commissioner finds, after hearing, that an individual licensee's violation was known or should have been known by one or more of the partners, officers or managers acting on behalf of the partnership, corporation, limited liability company or other business entity and the violation was neither reported to the Insurance Commissioner nor corrective action taken.

(e) In addition to or in lieu of any applicable denial, probation, suspension or revocation of a license, a person may, after hearing, be subject to a civil penalty in a sum not to exceed $5,000. Upon the failure of the licensee to pay such penalty by delivery of the sum to the commissioner within thirty days of notice thereof, the commissioner shall revoke or suspend such license.

(f) The Insurance Commissioner shall retain the authority to enforce the provisions of and impose any penalty or remedy authorized by this article against any person even if the person's license or registration has been surrendered or has lapsed by operation of law.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2017 Regular Session
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