CERTIFICATES OF INSURANCE

On July 1st, 2020, Public Chapter 608 takes effect which lays out certain requirements related to certificates of insurance.  This legislation was advocated for by the Insurors of Tennessee and is based on model legislation that has been adopted in over 30 other states.  Tennessee law now defines what a certificate of insurance is while also placing various restrictions on them related to preparing, issuing, requesting, or requiring certificates that contain false or misleading information or that purport to alter, amend, or extend the coverage in the underlying policy, as well as other requirements.  The resources on this page are made available here for informational and instructional purposes only.  If you have additional questions or concerns, please contact us at info@insurors.org

The Law

  Click here for the actual text of the new COI Law

FAQ

  What does the new Certificate of Insurance Law do?

The law defines what a certificate of insurance is and clearly outlines in statute that a COI does not amend, extend, or alter the coverage of the underlying insurance policy.  The law prohibits a person from preparing, issuing, requesting, or requiring the issuance of a certificate of insurance that contains any false or misleading information concerning the underlying policy, or that purports to alter, amend, or extend the coverage provided by the underlying policy.  It also prohibits altering or modifying a COI after its issuance. 

Furthermore, the law states that a COI cannot warrant that an insurance policy complies with the insurance or indemnification requirements of a contract. 

  What Certificates does this law apply to?

Following its enactment on July 1st, 2020, the law applies to all COIs issued in connection with property insurance or casualty insurance risks located in this state, regardless of where the policyholder, insurer, insurance producer, or person requesting or requiring the issuance of a certificate of insurance is located.

  What are the requirements related to Notice of Cancellation/Nonrenewal/Material Change or other notification requirements?

The law states that any notice of cancellation, nonrenewal, material change, or other notice requirements is governed by the terms of the underlying insurance policy, an endorsement to the policy or state law, rather than a certificate of insurance. 

  What are the penalties for violating the law? 

If a person intentionally violates these requirements, that person may face any of the following:

  • The Department of Commerce and Insurance may examine and investigate the activities of any person that it reasonably believes engaged in, or is currently engaging in, an act or practice that is prohibited under this law.
  • An order to cease and desist actions that constitute a violation of the law.
  • A civil penalty of up to $1,000 per violation.

Still Have Questions?

If you still have questions or need assistance with enforcement of these requirements, please contact the following:

  • For general questions about the law, COI best practices, or general assistance with COI issues contact info@insurors.org or 615-515-2605.
  • For questions about further enforcement efforts related to certificates, reach out to the Fraud Section of the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance by visiting their webpage here , or calling the complaint hotline at (615) 253-8841 or the toll-free number at (800) 792- 7573, or by sending in a complaint form to: 

Department of Commerce and Insurance 
Insurance Division – Fraud Investigations
500 James Robertson Parkway, 6th Floor
Nashville, Tennessee 37243-0575

Sample Letter


Click here for a sample letter when dealing with unreasonable certificate requests.