West Virginia Code
Insurance is a contract whereby one undertakes to indemnify another or to pay a specified amount upon determinable contingencies.
Insurer is every person engaged in the business of making contracts of insurance. Insurer includes private carrier as that term is used in chapter twenty-three of this code.
Person includes an individual, company, insurer, association, organization, society, reciprocal, partnership, syndicate, business trust, corporation or any other legal entity.
Acts, 2001 Reg. Sess., Ch. 158.
Commissioner means the Insurance Commissioner of West Virginia.
A domestic insurer is an insurer formed under the laws of West Virginia.
A foreign insurer is an insurer formed under the laws of the United States or of another state of the United States.
An alien insurer is an insurer formed under the laws of a country other than the United States.
State means any state, commonwealth, territory, or district of the United States. United States includes the states, territories, districts and commonwealths thereof.
The following definitions of kinds of insurance are not mutually exclusive and, if reasonably adaptable thereto, a particular coverage may be included under one or more of such definitions:
(a) Life insurance. -- Life insurance is insurance on human lives including endowment benefits, additional benefits in the event of death or dismemberment by accident or accidental means, additional benefits for disability and annuities.
(b) Accident and sickness. -- Accident and sickness insurance is insurance against bodily injury, disability or death by accident or accidental means, or the expense thereof, or against disability or expense resulting from sickness and insurance relating thereto. Group credit accident and health insurance may also include loss of income insurance which is insurance against the failure of a debtor to pay his or her monthly obligation due to involuntary loss of employment. For the purposes of this definition, involuntary loss of employment means the debtor loses employment income (salary or wages) as a result of unemployment caused by individual or mass layoff, general strikes, labor disputes, lockout or termination by employer for other than willful or criminal misconduct. Any or all of the above-mentioned perils may be included in an insurance policy, at the discretion of the policyholder.
(c) Fire. -- Fire insurance is insurance on real or personal property of every kind and interest therein, against loss or damage from any or all hazard or cause, and against loss consequential upon such loss or damage, other than noncontractual liability for any such loss or damage. Fire insurance shall also include miscellaneous insurance as defined in paragraph (12), subdivision (e) of this section.
(d) Marine insurance is insurance:
(1) Against any and all kinds of loss or damage to vessels, craft, aircraft, cars, automobiles and vehicles of every kind, as well as all goods, freight, cargoes, merchandise, effects, disbursements, profits, moneys, bullion, precious stones, securities, chooses in action, evidences of debt, valuable papers, bottomry and respondentia interests and all other kinds of property and interests therein, in respect to, appertaining to or in connection with any and all risks or perils of navigation, transit or transportation, including war risks, on or under any seas or other waters, on land (above or below ground), or in the air, or while being assembled, packed, crated, baled, compressed or similarly prepared for shipment or while awaiting the same or during any delays, storage, transshipment, or reshipment incident thereto, including marine builders' risks and all personal property floater risks;
(2) Against any and all kinds of loss or damage to person or to property in connection with or appertaining to a marine, inland marine, transit or transportation insurance, including liability for loss of or damage to either, arising out of or in connection with the construction, repair, operation, maintenance or use of the subject matter of such insurance (but not including life insurance or surety bonds nor insurance against loss by reason of bodily injury to the person arising out of the ownership, maintenance or use of automobiles);
(3) Against any and all kinds of loss or damage to precious stones, jewels, jewelry, gold, silver and other precious metals, whether used in business or trade or otherwise and whether the same be in course of transportation or otherwise;
(4) Against any and all kinds of loss or damage to bridges, tunnels and other instrumentalities of transportation and communication (excluding buildings, their furniture and furnishings, fixed contents and supplies held in storage) unless fire, windstorm, sprinkler leakage, hail, explosion, earthquake, riot or civil commotion or any or all of them are the only hazards to be covered;
(5) Against any and all kinds of loss or damage to piers, wharves, docks and ships, excluding the risks of fire, windstorm, sprinkler leakage, hail, explosion, earthquake, riot and civil commotion and each of them;
(6) Against any and all kinds of loss or damage to other aids to navigation and transportation, including dry docks and marine railways, dams and appurtenant facilities for control of waterways; and
(7) Marine protection and indemnity insurance, which is insurance against, or against legal liability of the insured for, loss, damage or expense arising out of, or incident to, the ownership, operation, chartering, maintenance, use, repair or construction of any vessel, craft or instrumentality in use in ocean or inland waterways, including liability of the insured for personal injury, illness or death or for loss of or damage to the property of another person.
(e) Casualty. -- Casualty insurance includes:
(1) Vehicle insurance, which is insurance against loss of or damage to any land vehicle or aircraft or any draft or riding animal or to property while contained therein or thereon or being loaded therein or therefrom, from any hazard or cause, and against any loss, liability or expense resulting from or incident to ownership, maintenance or use of any such vehicle, aircraft or animal; together with insurance against accidental death or accidental injury to individuals, including the named insured, while in, entering, alighting from, adjusting, repairing or cranking, or caused by being struck by any vehicle, aircraft or draft or riding animal, if such insurance is issued as a part of insurance on the vehicle, aircraft or draft or riding animal;
(2) Liability insurance, which is insurance against legal liability for the death, injury or disability of any human being, or for damage to property; and provisions for medical, hospital, surgical, disability benefits to injured persons and funeral and death benefits to dependents, beneficiaries or personal representatives of persons killed, irrespective of legal liability of the insured, when issued as an incidental coverage with or supplemental to liability insurance;
(3) Burglary and theft insurance, which is insurance against loss or damage by burglary, theft, larceny, robbery, forgery, fraud, vandalism, malicious mischief, confiscation, or wrongful conversion, disposal or concealment, or from any attempt at any of the foregoing, including supplemental coverages for medical, hospital, surgical and funeral benefits sustained by the named insured or other person as a result of bodily injury during the commission of a burglary, robbery or theft by another; also insurance against loss of or damage to moneys, coins, bullion, securities, notes, drafts, acceptances or any other valuable papers and documents resulting from any cause;
(4) Personal property floater insurance, which is insurance upon personal effects against loss or damage from any cause;
(5) Glass insurance, which is insurance against loss or damage to glass, including its lettering, ornamentation and fittings;
(6) Boiler and machinery insurance, which is insurance against any liability and loss or damage to property or interest resulting from accidents to or explosion of boilers, pipes, pressure containers, machinery or apparatus and to make inspection of and issue certificates of inspection upon boilers, machinery and apparatus of any kind, whether or not insured;
(7) Leakage and fire extinguishing equipment insurance, which is insurance against loss or damage to any property or interest caused by the breakage or leakage of sprinklers, hoses, pumps and other fire extinguishing equipment or apparatus, water mains, pipes and containers, or by water entering through leaks or openings in buildings, and insurance against loss or damage to such sprinklers, hoses, pumps and other fire extinguishing equipment or apparatus;
(8) Credit insurance, which is insurance against loss or damage resulting from failure of debtors to pay their obligations to the insured. Credit insurance shall include loss of income insurance which is insurance against the failure of a debtor to pay his or her monthly obligation due to involuntary loss of employment. For the purpose of this definition, involuntary loss of employment means the debtor loses employment income (salary or wages) as a result of unemployment caused by individual or mass layoff, general strikes, labor disputes, lockout or termination by employer for other than willful or criminal misconduct; any or all of the above-mentioned perils may be included in an insurance policy, at the discretion of the policyholder;
(9) Malpractice insurance, which is insurance against legal liability of the insured and against loss, damage or expense incidental to a claim of such liability, and including medical, hospital, surgical and funeral benefits to injured persons, irrespective of legal liability of the insured arising out of the death, injury or disablement of any person, or arising out of damage to the economic interest of any person, as the result of negligence in rendering expert, fiduciary or professional service;
(10) Entertainment insurance, which is insurance indemnifying the producer of any motion picture, television, radio, theatrical, sport, spectacle, entertainment or similar production, event or exhibition against loss from interruption, postponement or cancellation thereof due to death, accidental injury or sickness of performers, participants, directors or other principals;
(11) Mine subsidence insurance as provided for in article thirty of this chapter;
(12) Miscellaneous insurance, which is insurance against any other kind of loss, damage or liability properly a subject of insurance and not within any other kind of insurance as defined in this chapter, if such insurance is not disapproved by the commissioner as being contrary to law or public policy; and
(13) Federal flood insurance, which is insurance provided by the federal insurance administration or by private insurers through the write your own program within the national flood insurance program, instituted by the federal insurance administration pursuant to the provision of 42 U.S.C. §4071, on real or personal property of every kind and interest therein, against loss or damage from flood or mudslide and against loss consequential to such loss or damage, other than noncontractual liability for any loss or damage.
(14) Workers' compensation insurance, which is insurance providing all compensation and benefits required by chapter twenty-three of this code.
(f) Surety. -- Surety insurance includes:
(1) Fidelity insurance, which is insurance guaranteeing the fidelity of persons holding positions of public or private trust;
(2) Insurance guaranteeing the performance of contracts, other than insurance policies, and guaranteeing and executing bonds, undertakings and contracts of surety ship: Provided, That surety insurance does not include the guaranteeing and executing of bonds by professional bondsmen in criminal cases or by individuals not in the business of becoming a surety for compensation upon bonds;
(3) Insurance indemnifying banks, bankers, brokers, financial or moneyed corporations or associations against loss, resulting from any cause, of bills of exchange, notes, bonds, securities, evidences of debt, deeds, mortgages, warehouse receipts or other valuable papers, documents, money, precious metals and articles made therefrom, jewelry, watches, necklaces, bracelets, gems, precious and semiprecious stones, including any loss while they are being transported in armored motor vehicles or by messenger, but not including any other risks of transportation or navigation, and also insurance against loss or damage to such an insured's premises or to his furnishings, fixtures, equipment, safes and vaults therein, caused by burglary, robbery, theft, vandalism or malicious mischief, or any attempt to commit such crimes; and
(4) Title insurance, which is insurance of owners of property or others having an interest therein, or liens or encumbrances thereon, against loss by encumbrance, defective title, invalidity or adverse claim to title.
Reinsurance is a contract of indemnity against liability by which an insurer procures another insurer to insure it against loss or liability by reason of the original insurance.
An insurance agent is an individual appointed by an insurer to solicit, negotiate, effect or countersign insurance contracts in its behalf.
An insurance solicitor is an individual appointed and authorized by an agent to solicit and receive applications for insurance as a representative of such agent.
A broker is an individual who for compensation in any manner solicits, negotiates or procures insurance or the renewal or continuance thereof on behalf of insureds or prospective insureds.
Reciprocal insurance is insurance resulting from an interexchange among persons known as subscribers of reciprocal agreements of indemnity, the interexchange being effected through an attorney-in-fact common to all such persons, and the group of such subscribers being a reciprocal insurer.
Policy means the contract effecting insurance, or the certificate thereof, by whatever name called, and includes all clauses, riders, endorsements and papers attached thereto and a part thereof.
Premium is the consideration for insurance, by whatever name called.
Stock insurer is an incorporated insurer with capital divided into shares and owned by its shareholders.
Mutual insurer is an incorporated insurer without permanent capital stock and the governing body of which is elected by the policyholders.
Acts, 2001 Reg. Sess., Ch. 158.
(a) Emergency services are: Those services provided in or by a hospital emergency facility, an ambulance providing related services under the provisions of article four-c, chapter sixteen of this code or the private office of a dentist to evaluate and treat a medical condition manifesting itself by the sudden, and at the time, unexpected onset of symptoms that require immediate medical attention and that failure to provide medical attention would result in serious impairment to bodily function, serious dysfunction to any bodily organ or part, or would place the person's health in jeopardy.
(b) From July 1, 1998, the following provisions apply:
(1) "Emergency medical services" means those services required to screen for or treat an emergency medical condition until the condition is stabilized, including prehospital care;
(2) "Prudent layperson" means a person who is without medical training and who draws on his or her practical experience when making a decision regarding whether an emergency medical condition exists for which emergency treatment should be sought;
(3) "Emergency medical condition for the prudent layperson" means one that manifests itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity, including severe pain, such that the person could reasonably expect the absence of immediate medical attention to result in serious jeopardy to the individual's health, or, with respect to a pregnant woman, the health of the unborn child; serious impairment to bodily functions; or serious dysfunction of any bodily organ or part;
(4) "Stabilize" means with respect to an emergency medical condition, to provide medical treatment of the condition necessary to assure, with reasonable medical probability that no medical deterioration of the condition is likely to result from or occur during the transfer of the individual from a facility: Provided, That this provision may not be construed to prohibit, limit or otherwise delay the transportation required for a higher level of care than that possible at the treating facility;
(5) "Medical screening examination" means an appropriate examination within the capability of the hospital's emergency department, including ancillary services routinely available to the emergency department, to determine whether or not an emergency medical condition exists; and
(6) "Emergency medical condition" means a condition that manifests itself by acute symptoms of sufficient severity including severe pain such that the absence of immediate medical attention could reasonably be expected to result in serious jeopardy to the individual's health or with respect to a pregnant woman the health of the unborn child, serious impairment to bodily functions or serious dysfunction of any bodily part or organ.
Acts, 2002 Reg. Sess., Ch. 181.