Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Emergency Nonresident Unlicensed Adjuster Registration
For the most recent declaration, issued on August 21, 2018, from the state Insurance Commissioner regarding assistance of nonresident unlicensed adjusters for Hurricane Lane.
Q: What is the statute governing registration of nonresident unlicensed adjusters?
A: Hawaii Revised Statutes (“HRS”) §431:9-201.
Q: How and when do I know if your state needs assistance of nonresident unlicensed adjusters?
A: The Insurance Commissioner must make a determination that losses suffered are a direct result of a catastrophe and are so severe that licensed adjusters and independent adjusters will be unable to adjust losses in a reasonable time. The Commissioner will then issue a declaration stating adjusters may perform work in the state without a Hawai`i license to assist with claims adjusting for a specified period.
The declaration from the Commissioner will be posted on the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Insurance Division website.
Q: What are the requirements to register in Hawaii as a nonresident unlicensed Adjuster?
A: The nonresident adjuster must comply with the following to operate in the state without a license for a period of time, as determined by the Commissioner:
Provide to the Insurance Commissioner a certified copy of the adjuster’s current license issued in another state that has substantially similar licensing requirements to HRS § 431:9-222.
Within three (3) working days of the commencement of work by the nonresident adjuster, the insurance company, independent adjusting company, or producer that is using the adjuster shall provide the following on company letterhead to the Insurance Commissioner:
- The name of the nonresident adjuster;
- The nonresident adjuster’s Hawaii mailing and business addresses and phone numbers; and
- The nonresident adjuster’s permanent home and business addresses and phone numbers.
Q: Are these nonresident adjusters required to be licensed in Hawaii?
A: No, however, they are required to register with the Commissioner.
Q: Where should I send the registration requirements to?
A: Documents may be sent to the State of Hawaii, Insurance Division, Licensing Branch via mail, email, fax or in person to the following address:
State of Hawaii
Insurance Division, Licensing Branch
Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs
335 Merchant Street, Room 213
Honolulu, HI 96813
Q: What is a “certified copy” of the adjuster’s current license? Are there alternative documents besides the certified copy that are acceptable?
A: A certified copy is a copy of an original license, that is marked with an official endorsement (or stamp) or certificate to attest that it is a true, exact and accurate copy of the original document. Please consult your state on how to obtain such a copy.
Other acceptable alternative documents include the following:
Copy Certification/Attestation by a Notary. A copy of a current license a Notary Public has certified is the true, exact and complete copy of an original document would be accepted by the Commissioner. Some states allow the practice but only under certain conditions. Other states do not allow the practice at all. Please consult with your state authority on whether this is allowed;
Your current adjuster license information screen page printed directly from your state insurance website, which can be accessed and verified by the Hawaii Licensing Branch;
Producer License Database (PDB) report from NAIC that shows your current adjuster license status.
Q: Whose letterhead should I use to provide adjuster’s information for registration?
A: A letterhead from an insurance company, independent adjusting company or producer that is using the nonresident unlicensed adjuster for the adjustment of losses in Hawaii.
Q: Can I use a P.O. Box for Hawaii’s mailing and business addresses?
A: No, a Hawaii street address is required for mailing and business addresses registration requirement.
Q: Can I use my out-of-state cell phone number in place of a Hawaii phone number?
A: No, a phone number with an 808 area code is required.
Q: If nonresident unlicensed adjusters work in a call center handling phone claims from sites throughout the United States outside of Hawaii, should these adjusters be registered?
A: Yes. These out-of-state adjusters must be registered and comply with HRS §431:9-201. They can use the address and telephone number of the local Hawaii contact or local insurer they are working for.
Q: How long will it take to process the registration?
A: 3-5 business days if all registration paperwork is provided and in good order. A letter of registration will be sent to the nonresident adjuster upon the completion of the registration.
Q: What happens if I adjusted claims but did not register or complete the registration for a nonresident unlicensed adjuster in Hawaii?
A: You are in violation of HRS §431:9-201. Any person who knowingly violates this section shall be assessed a civil penalty not less than $1,000 and not more than $10,000 for each violation.
Q: Who can I contact if I have more questions regarding registration for nonresident unlicensed adjuster?
A: You can call Insurance Division Licensing Branch at 808-586-2788 or send an email to email@example.com.