LATEST PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENTS
2024 Appointment Renewal Process Announcement
On February 1, 2024, the Wyoming Department of Insurance (“Department”) will email the Annual Appointment Renewal Invoice and the Detailed Appointment List to each insurer. Appointments will retroactively expire effective January 31, 2023, unless the renewal invoice is paid in full on or before the due date of March 31, 2023. Pursuant to W.S. § 26-9-213 ↗, each producer acting as an agent of the insurer must be appointed and each insurer shall remit the annual appointment renewal fee to the Department.
The last day to terminate an appointment and avoid the renewal fee is January 31, 2024. Once invoices are generated, the invoice may not be altered and must be paid in full to renew the company’s appointments. Be aware that if the invoice is not paid on or before March 31, 2024, the appointments will terminate effective January 31, 2024.
All 2024 Wyoming Company Annual Appointment Renewal Invoices should be paid via Sircon’s electronic payment portal (www.sircon.com). This process enhances efficiency, reduces costs and improves customer service with the Department. You will be able to submit payment for all Appointment Renewal invoices for your company in a single transaction through this service without having to pay each invoice separately. To use this service, you must be a Sircon account holder.
If you do not have a Sircon account, go to www.sircon.com/products/carriers/signup/ ↗ and follow the instructions to establish your Sircon account. If you already have a Sircon account, no action is required by you until you receive your invoice. Access to the Pay State Invoice Service for the Wyoming Appointment Renewals will be available on February 1, 2024.
Payments will be made through an Automated Clearing House (ACH) process using Vertafore’s Sircon Solution. There will be a $10 service fee for each invoice paid. Payments can be made with checking, savings, or corporate checking accounts. To submit these payments, the account must be authorized to accept ACH transactions.
We recommend notifying your bank no later than January 14, 2024, with the following information:
ACH Payment ID is: F742470776
Payment Processor: Vertafore, Inc.
If you have any questions regarding your Sircon account or this payment service, please contact Sircon at https://sirconwalkup.vertafore.com/apex/sc_ContactSupport ↗ or by phone at (877) 876-4430.
To access the Pay State Invoice service, go to www.sircon.com ↗ and log into your business account. Under the Administration menu click on “Pay State Invoices” to process payment.
Updating Insurer Appointment Renewal Contact Information
Appointment Renewal Invoices will be generated and emailed on February 1, 2023 to the Appointment Renewal address/contact on record with the Department. The Appointment Renewal address/contact shall be reviewed and updated using the Wyoming Company Address Change Portal.
Questions regarding use of the Company Contact Address Change Portal should be addressed to Tammy Rathburn at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (307) 777-7401.
Important Dates to Remember for your Appointment Renewal
1/31/2024: Appointment renewal contact updates due via the Department’s Company Address Portal.
1/31/2024: Last day for terminations of appointments not to be renewed.
2/1/2024: Appointment renewal invoices sent via email.
3/31/2024: PAYMENT DUE by 11:59 pm MT. Be aware, if the invoice is not paid on or before March 31, 2023, the appointments will be terminated on April 11, 2023.
4/1/2024: Payment service closes and payments will no longer be accepted.
Any insurer having a dispute regarding a specific appointment must submit an email to the Department and provide documentation to verify that an appointment was terminated by the insurer prior to February 1, 2023. Invoices must be paid in full and may not be altered.
Questions concerning the Annual Appointment Renewal Invoices may be sent to Lisa Hastings, Licensing Supervisor at email@example.com or by phone at (307) 777-7344.
Wyoming Department of Insurance Earns NAIC Accreditation
The Wyoming Department of Insurance has again earned accreditation by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). Accreditation demonstrates a state's excellence in monitoring the financial solvency of Wyoming-domiciled insurance companies. Wyoming was first accredited in 1993 and has been continuously accredited since that time.
“Earning accreditation reflects the hard work and dedication of our financial examiners. Accreditation is the backbone of insurance regulations. It tells the world that Wyoming is doing it right and other states can rely upon our work” said Insurance Commissioner Jeff Rude.
Accreditation assures states are regulating their domestic multistate insurers according to national standards agreed to by the NAIC. For the insurance industry, accreditation means insurers will not require additional independent exams from the other states in which the insurers do business.
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners has articulated the following:
The NAIC Financial Regulation Standards and Accreditation Program (Accreditation Program) serves as the backbone of the U.S. national system of state-based regulation. The Accreditation Program defines baseline standards deemed essential for effective solvency regulation in each state. In June 1989, the NAIC adopted the Financial Regulation Standards (Standards) to guide state legislatures and state insurance departments in the development of effective solvency regulation. In June 1990, the NAIC adopted a formal certification program to provide guidance to the states regarding the Standards, as well as an incentive to put them in place.
The Accreditation Program provides the impetus for states to adopt in a consistent manner the NAIC model laws, regulations and requirements that make up the U.S. insurance financial solvency framework. It is designed to ensure state insurance departments perform adequate and timely financial analysis and examinations, maintain appropriate organizational and personnel practices, and have sufficient resources and statutory authority to carry out their duties. Accreditation, granted to those states in line with the Standards, fosters accountability and uniformity, and allows regulators of multi-state insurers to rely on the domiciliary state’s solvency regulation to avoid duplication of effort and expense. Each accredited state’s laws or regulations contain a provision that all licensed companies are to be examined periodically. In lieu of performing its own examination, a state may accept the examination report prepared by an insurance department that was accredited at the time of examination. This inter-state reliance ultimately saves insurance companies, and by extension consumers, millions of dollars in duplicative examination costs. The process for a model law to become an accreditation standard is extensive and involves input and feedback from numerous parties, including state legislators and consumer and industry representatives. This is in addition to the extensive model law/regulation process at the NAIC where state insurance regulators consider comments and receive input from all insurance sector stakeholders. Only after several years and extensive feedback from the industry and consumers are model laws developed and become accreditation standards. Even then, once a model is adopted as an accreditation standard, states are given a two year timeframe to implement new standards before they take effect.
Three Ways to Protect Yourself During Medicare and Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment
During Medicare annual open enrollment (Oct. 15, 2023 – Dec. 7, 2023) and Medicare Advantage open enrollment (Jan. 1, 2024 – March 31, 2024), you can expect to see plenty of advertisements promising the "latest and greatest" ways to save on your health plans and expenses if you'll just "call right now!"
While some choices may look promising, some offers really are "too good to be true."
The following three tips will help you navigate Medicare annual open enrollment and Medicare Advantage open enrollment, find a plan that works best for you, and spot misleading or fraudulent marketing.
1. Don't give into pressure
There's no such thing as a "limited-time offer" or "special discount if you sign up right away" when it comes to these plans.
You don't have to make a decision after a single phone call or website visit. Take your time.
Don't hesitate to ask anyone calling you for their full name and contact information, company license information, or a copy of the plan.
NOTE: Medicare and Social Security will never contact you by phone to offer a health plan.
You don't need to provide your Social Security number, bank account, Medicare number, or credit card before you can see plan details or receive a quote for legitimate plans.
2. Do your research before you commit
Read Medicare.gov's breakdown to learn more about what each part of Medicare covers and the difference between Medicare, Medicare Supplement insurance (Medigap), Medicare Advantage, and Medicaid.
Check with your state department of insurance (DOI) to ask any questions or ensure an agent or company is licensed to provide plans in your state.
You can also contact your State Health Insurance Assistance Program for help navigating your Medicare options. In some states, these are known as a SHIP program, but they may have a different name in other states.
Keep in mind that not all the benefits you hear about on TV or see on the internet may be offered by every plan or even be available in your local area.
Familiarize yourself with the rules those representing a Medicare health plan have to follow.
Read the fine print of Medicare Advantage plans. When you hear something is "free" or "zero premium," you need to exercise caution. While some plans may have "zero co-pays," those could be limited to your primary care provider. If you see a lot of specialists, you may pay more out of pocket.
3. Follow basic cybersecurity practices online
Beware of clicking on random internet ads or pop-ups.
Know that some websites will change their colors or layout to look like a government site but aren't actually affiliated with the government.
Use caution and avoid responding to unsolicited messages, texts, or emails.
You can learn more about best practices here.
Contact us at 307-777-7402 if you need assistance or believe you have been misled.
Covid Vaccine Coverage
The Wyoming Department of Insurance (DOI) is reminding companies of their obligation to provide coverage of COVID-19 vaccines including the recently updated mRNA COVID-19 VACCINE recommended by Advisory Committee on Immunizations Practices (ACIP) on September 12, 2023. Pursuant to Sections 3202 and 3203 of the CARES Act, vaccines received from a network provider must be covered without cost-sharing within 15 business days after the date on which an application recommendation is made by U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) with an effective rating of “A” or “B”B or ACIP regarding the qualifying coronavirus preventive service.
Wyoming DOI urges issuers to act as quickly as possible and take the necessary measures to streamline any claim system, billing, coding or overall coverage issues prior to the 15 days, but no later than October 9, 2023.
Wyoming DOI is steadfast in their mission of ensuring all insureds receive the benefits of the insurance they pay for, this includes access to vaccines that could reduce the potential for hospitalizations and death.
Questions regarding this memorandum may be directed to Jill Reinking, Senior Health Policy Analyst, 307-777-7401, firstname.lastname@example.org.
The mission of this agency is to enforce the insurance laws and regulations of the State impartially, honestly, and expeditiously; to serve the consumer of insurance; to encourage a healthy insurance marketplace; and to promote change to better serve the public interest. To this end, the highest ethical, professional, and work quality standards will be exercised in all formal and informal relationships with individuals, agencies, and companies affected by the policies and actions of the department. It is our commitment to be the best insurance regulatory agency in the United States.