HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
TWENTY-SEVENTH LEGISLATURE, 2013
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
relating to insurance.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. The legislature finds that current state law requires written notification for insurance notices and documents. The legislature further finds that consumers are showing a preference for electronic access to their records in lieu of paper mailings.
The purpose of this Act is to:
(1) Permit a party to consent to the electronic delivery of insurance notices and documents;
(2) Require an insurer to obtain the consent of a party prior to sending a party electronic notices and documents; and
(3) Permit a party to withdraw consent for electronic notices and documents.
SECTION 2. Chapter 489E, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new part to be appropriately inserted and to read as follows:
"Part II. Insurance and Insurance policies
§489E- Insurance and insurance policies; electronic notices and documents. (a) Notwithstanding any other provisions in this chapter to the contrary, this section shall apply to insurance and insurance policies.
(b) For the purposes of this section:
"Delivered by electronic means" or "delivery by electronic means" includes:
(1) Delivery to an electronic mail address at which a party has consented to receive notices or documents; or
(2) Posting on an electronic network or site accessible via the Internet, mobile application, computer, mobile device, tablet, or any other electronic device, together with a separate notice to a party directed to the electronic mail address at which the party has consented to receive notice of the posting.
"Party" means any recipient, including but not limited to an applicant, an insured, a policyholder, or an annuity contract holder, of any notice or document required as part of an insurance transaction.
(c) Any notice or other document to a party that is required by applicable law in an insurance transaction or that serves as evidence of insurance coverage may be delivered, stored, and presented by electronic means; provided that it meets all requirements of this part.
(d) Delivery of a notice or document in accordance with this section shall be considered equivalent to any delivery method required under applicable law, including delivery by first class mail; first class mail, postage prepaid; certified mail; or certificate of mailing.
(e) A notice or document may be delivered by electronic means by an insurer to a party if:
(1) The party has affirmatively consented to that method of delivery and has not withdrawn the consent;
(2) Prior to giving consent, the party is provided with a clear and conspicuous statement informing the party of:
(A) Any right or option of the party to have the notice or document provided or made available in paper or other non-electronic form;
(B) The right of the party to withdraw consent to delivery by electronic means and any fees, conditions, or consequences imposed if consent is withdrawn;
(C) Whether the party's consent applies:
(i) Only to the particular transaction to which the notice or document must be given; or
(ii) To identified categories of notices or documents that may be delivered by electronic means during the course of the parties' relationship;
(D) The means by which a party may obtain a paper copy of a notice or document delivered by electronic means, after consent is given and the fee, if any, for the paper copy; and
(E) The procedure a party shall follow to withdraw consent for delivery by electronic means and requirements for updating any information needed to contact the party electronically;
(3) The party:
(A) Prior to giving consent, is provided with a statement of the hardware and software requirements for access to and retention of a notice or document delivered by electronic means; and
(B) Consents electronically, or confirms consent electronically, in a manner that reasonably demonstrates the party can access information in the electronic form that will be used for notices or documents delivered by electronic means; and
(4) After the party gives consent, if a change in the hardware or software requirements needed to access or retain a notice or document delivered by electronic means creates a material risk that the party will not be able to access or retain a subsequent notice or document to which the consent applies, the insurer shall:
(A) Provide the party with a statement of:
(i) The revised hardware and software requirements for access and retention of a notice or document delivered by electronic means; and
(ii) The right of the party to withdraw consent without the imposition of any fee, condition, or consequence not disclosed under paragraph (2)(B); and
(B) Comply with paragraph (2).
(f) This section does not affect requirements related to content or timing of any notice or document required under applicable law.
(g) If a provision of this part or applicable law that requires a notice or document to be provided to a party also expressly requires verification or acknowledgment of receipt of the notice or document, the notice or document may be delivered by electronic means only if the method used provides for verification or acknowledgment of receipt.
(h) The legal effectiveness, validity, or enforceability of any contract or policy of insurance executed by a party may not be denied solely because of the failure to obtain electronic consent or confirmation of consent in accordance with subsection (e)(3)(B).
(i) A withdrawal of consent by a party does not affect the legal effectiveness, validity, or enforceability of a notice or document delivered by electronic means to the party before the withdrawal of consent is effective.
A withdrawal of consent by a party is effective within a reasonable period of time after receipt of the withdrawal by the insurer.
For purposes of this section, failure by an insurer to comply with subsection (e)(4) may be treated as a withdrawal of consent, at the election of the party.
(j) This section does not apply to a notice or document delivered in an electronic form by an insurer to a party who consented prior to the effective date of this section to receive a notice or document in an electronic form otherwise allowed by law.
(k) If the consent of a party to receive certain notices or documents in an electronic form is on file with an insurer prior to the effective date of this section, and pursuant to this section an insurer intends to deliver additional notices or documents to the party in electronic form, then prior to delivery by electronic means of the additional notices or documents, the insurer shall notify the party of:
(1) The notices or documents that may be delivered by electronic means under this section that were not previously delivered electronically; and
(2) The party's right to withdraw consent to delivery by electronic means of notices or documents.
(l) Except as otherwise provided by law, if an oral communication or a recording of an oral communication from a party can be reliably stored and reproduced by an insurer, the oral communication or recording may qualify as a notice or document delivered by electronic means for purposes of this section.
If a provision of this part or applicable law requires a signature, notice, or document to be notarized, acknowledged, verified, or made under oath, the requirement is satisfied if the electronic signature of the person authorized to perform those acts, together with all other information required to be included by the provision, is attached to or logically associated with the signature, notice, or document.
(m) Nothing in this section shall be construed to modify, limit, or supersede the federal Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act, Public Law 106-229, as amended."
SECTION 3. Chapter 489E, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by designating sections 489E-1 to 489E-19 as part I and inserting a title before section 489E-1 to read as follows:
"Part I. General Provisions"
SECTION 4. Section 489E-3, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:
"§489E-3 Scope. (a) This [
part shall apply to electronic records and electronic signatures
relating to a transaction.
(b) This [
chapter] part does not
apply to a transaction to the extent it is governed by:
(1) A law governing the creation and execution of wills, codicils, or testamentary trusts;
(2) The Uniform Commercial Code other than section
490:1‑201, article 2, and article 2A; [
(3) A law or rule governing notice of:
(A)[ ]] Default, including but not
limited to notices relating to acceleration, repossession, eviction,
foreclosure, or the right to cure;
(B)[ ]] Utility shutoff, including
water, telephone, gas and electricity; or
(C)[ ]] Cancellation, termination,
lapse, or material alteration of [ a contract of insurance,] insurance
benefits, a life settlement or viatical settlement agreement, or a
service contract[ .]; and
(4) Part II of this chapter, relating to electronic notices and documents associated with insurance and insurance policies.
(c) This [
chapter] part applies
to an electronic record or electronic signature otherwise excluded from the
application of this [ chapter] part under subsection (b) when used
for a transaction subject to a law other than those specified in subsection
(d) A transaction subject to this [
part is also subject to other applicable substantive law."
SECTION 5. Sections 489E-1, 489E-2, 489E-4, 489E-5, 489E‑6, 489E-8, 489E-15, and 489E-18, Hawaii Revised Statutes, are amended by substituting the word "part" wherever the word "chapter" appears, as the context requires.
SECTION 6. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.
SECTION 7. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.
Uniform Electronic Transactions Act; Insurance and Insurance Policies; Electronic Notices and Documents
Permits insurers to send electronic notices and documents relating to insurance and insurance policies. Requires an insurer to obtain the consent of a party prior to sending the party electronic notices and documents. Permits a party to withdraw consent for electronic notices and documents.
The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.