2006 Louisiana Laws - RS 22:194 — Disclosure
A. With each application for a viatical settlement, a viatical settlement provider or viatical settlement broker shall provide the viator with at least the following disclosures no later than the time the application for the viatical settlement contract is signed by all parties. The disclosures shall be provided in a separate document that is signed by the viator and the viatical settlement provider or viatical settlement broker and shall provide the following information:
(1) There are possible alternatives to viatical settlement contracts including any accelerated death benefits or policy loans offered under the viator's life insurance policy.
(2) Some or all of the proceeds of the viatical settlement may be taxable under federal income tax and state franchise and income taxes, and assistance should be sought from a professional tax advisor.
(3) Proceeds of the viatical settlement could be subject to the claims of creditors.
(4) Receipt of the proceeds of a viatical settlement may adversely affect the viator's eligibility for Medicaid or other government benefits or entitlement, and advice should be obtained from the appropriate government agencies.
(5) The viator has the right to rescind a viatical settlement contract for fifteen calendar days after the receipt of the viatical settlement proceeds by the viator, as provided in this Part. If the insured dies during the rescission period, the settlement contract shall be deemed to have been rescinded, subject to repayment of all viatical settlement proceeds and any premiums, loans, and loan interest to the viatical settlement provider or purchaser.
(6) Funds will be sent to the viator within three business days after the viatical settlement provider has received the insurer or group administrator's acknowledgment that ownership of the policy or interest in the certificate has been transferred and the beneficiary has been designated.
(7) Entering into a viatical settlement contract may cause other rights or benefits, including conversion rights and waiver of premium benefits that may exist under the policy or certificate, to be forfeited by the viator. Assistance should be sought from a financial advisor.
(8) Disclosure to a viator shall include distribution of a brochure describing the process of viatical settlements. The NAIC's form for the brochure shall be used unless one is developed by the commissioner.
(9) The disclosure document shall contain the following language: "All medical, financial, or personal information solicited or obtained by a viatical settlement provider or viatical settlement broker about an insured, including the insured's identity or the identity of family members, a spouse, or a significant other may be disclosed as necessary to effect the viatical settlement between the viator and the viatical settlement provider. If you are asked to provide this information, you will be asked to consent to the disclosure. The information may be provided to someone who buys the policy or provides funds for the purchase. You may be asked to renew your permission to share information every two years."
(10) The insured may be contacted by either the viatical settlement provider or broker or its authorized representative for the purpose of determining the insured's health status. This contact is limited to once every three months if the insured has a life expectancy of more than one year, and no more than once per month if the insured has a life expectancy of one year or less.
B. A viatical settlement provider shall provide the viator with at least the following disclosures no later than the date the viatical settlement contract is signed by all parties. The disclosures shall be conspicuously displayed in the viatical settlement contract or in a separate document signed by the viator and the viatical settlement provider or viatical settlement broker, and provide the following information:
(1) State the affiliation, if any, between the viatical settlement provider and the issuer of the insurance policy to be viaticated.
(2) The document shall include the name, address, and telephone number of the viatical settlement provider.
(3) If an insurance policy to be viaticated has been issued as a joint policy or involves family riders or any coverage of a life other than the insured under the policy to be viaticated, the viator shall be informed of the possible loss of coverage on the other lives under the policy and shall be advised to consult with his or her insurance producer or the insurer issuing the policy for advice on the proposed viatical settlement.
(4) State the dollar amount of the current death benefit payable to the viatical settlement provider under the policy or certificate. If known, the viatical settlement provider shall also disclose the availability of any additional guaranteed insurance benefits, the dollar amount of any accidental death and dismemberment benefits under the policy or certificate, and the viatical settlement provider's interest in those benefits.
(5) State the name, business address, and telephone number of the independent third-party escrow agent and the fact that the viator or owner may inspect or receive copies of the relevant escrow or trust agreements or documents.
C. If the provider transfers ownership or changes the beneficiary of the insurance policy, the provider shall communicate the change in ownership or beneficiary to the insured within twenty days after the change.
D. A viatical settlement provider or its viatical settlement investment agent shall provide the viatical settlement purchaser with at least the following disclosures prior to the date the viatical settlement purchase agreement is signed by all parties. The disclosures shall be conspicuously displayed in any viatical purchase contract or in a separate document signed by the viatical settlement purchaser and viatical settlement provider or viatical settlement investment agent, and shall make the following disclosure to the viatical settlement purchaser:
(1) The purchaser will receive no returns (i.e., dividends and interest) until the insured dies.
(2) The actual annual rate of return on a viatical settlement contract is dependent upon an accurate projection of the insured's life expectancy and the actual date of the insured's death. An annual "guaranteed" rate of return is not determinable.
(3) The viaticated life insurance contract should not be considered a liquid purchase since it is impossible to predict the exact timing of its maturity and the funds probably are not available until the death of the insured. There is no established secondary market for resale of these products by the purchaser.
(4) The purchaser may lose all benefits or may receive substantially reduced benefits if the insurer goes out of business during the term of the viatical investment.
(5) The purchaser is responsible for payment of the insurance premium or other costs related to the policy, if required by the terms of the viatical purchase agreement. These payments may reduce the purchaser's return. If a party other than the purchaser is responsible for the payment, the name and address of that party also shall be disclosed.
(6) The purchaser is responsible for payment of the insurance premiums or other costs related to the policy if the insured returns to health and to disclose the amount of such premiums, if applicable.
(7) State the name and address of any person providing escrow services and the relationship to the broker.
(8) The amount of any trust fees or other expenses to be charged to the viatical settlement purchaser shall be disclosed.
(9) State whether the purchaser is entitled to a refund of all or part of his or her investment under the settlement contract if the policy is later determined to be null and void.
(10) Disclose that group policies may contain limitations or caps in the conversion rights, additional premiums may have to be paid if the policy is converted, name the party responsible for the payment of the additional premiums, and, if a group policy is terminated and replaced by another group policy, state that there may be no right to convert the original coverage.
(11) Disclose the risks associated with policy contestability including but not limited to the risk that the purchaser will have no claim or only a partial claim to death benefits should the insurer rescind the policy within the contestability period.
(12) Disclose whether the purchaser will be the owner of the policy in addition to being the beneficiary, and if the purchaser is the beneficiary only and not also the owner, the special risks associated with that status, including but not limited to the risk that the beneficiary may be changed or the premium may not be paid.
(13) Describe the experience and qualifications of the person who determines the life expectancy of the insured, i.e., in-house staff, independent physicians, and specialty firms that weigh medical and actuarial data, the information this projection is based on, and the relationship of the projection maker to the viatical settlement provider, if any.
(14) Disclosure to an investor shall include distribution of a brochure describing the process of investment in viatical settlements. The NAIC's form for the brochure shall be used unless one is developed by the commissioner.
E. A viatical settlement provider or its viatical settlement investment agent shall provide the viatical settlement purchaser with at least the following disclosures no later than at the time of the assignment, transfer, or sale of all or a portion of an insurance policy. The disclosures shall be contained in a document signed by the viatical settlement purchaser and viatical settlement provider or viatical settlement investment agent, and shall make the following disclosures to the viatical settlement purchaser:
(1) Disclose all the life expectancy certifications obtained by the provider in the process of determining the price paid to the viator.
(2) State whether premium payments or other costs related to the policy have been escrowed. If escrowed, state the date upon which the escrowed funds will be depleted and whether the purchaser will be responsible for payment of premiums thereafter and, if so, the amount of the premiums.
(3) State whether premium payments or other costs related to the policy have been waived. If waived, disclose whether the investor will be responsible for payment of the premiums if the insurer that wrote the policy terminates the waiver after purchase and the amount of those premiums.
(4) Disclose the type of policy offered or sold, any additional benefits contained in the policy, and the current status of the policy.
(5) If the policy is term insurance, disclose the special risks associated with term insurance, including but not limited to the purchaser's responsibility for additional premiums if the viator continues the term policy at the end of the current term.
(6) State whether the policy is contestable.
(7) State whether the insurer that wrote the policy has any additional rights that could negatively affect or extinguish the purchaser's rights under the viatical settlement contract, what these rights are, and under what conditions these rights are activated.
(8) State the name and address of the person responsible for monitoring the insured's condition. Describe how often the monitoring of the insured's condition is done, how the date of death is determined, and how and when this information will be transmitted to the purchaser.
F. The viatical settlement purchase agreement is voidable by the purchaser at any time within three days after the disclosures mandated by Subsections D and E of this Section are received by the purchaser.
Acts 2003, No. 343, §1.
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