Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 38.2. Insurance
Chapter 18. Insurance Agents
11/28/2022

Article 8. Portable Electronics Insurance.

§ 38.2-1875. Definitions.

As used in this article, unless the context requires a different meaning:

"Covered customer" means a customer who elects coverage under a portable electronics insurance policy issued to a vendor of portable electronics.

"Customer" means a person who purchases portable electronics or services.

"Portable electronics" means electronic devices that are portable in nature, accessories to such devices, and services related to the use of the devices.

"Portable electronics insurance" means insurance providing coverage for the repair or replacement of portable electronics that may cover portable electronics against any one or more of the following causes of loss: loss, theft, mechanical failure, malfunction, damage, or other applicable peril. "Portable electronics insurance" does not include: (i) an extended service contract governed by Chapter 34 (§ 59.1-435 et seq.) of Title 59.1; (ii) a policy of insurance covering a seller's or a manufacturer's obligations under a warranty; or (iii) a homeowner's, renter's, private passenger automobile, commercial multi-peril, or similar policy.

"Portable electronics transaction" means (i) the sale or lease of portable electronics by a vendor to a customer or (ii) the sale of a service related to the use of portable electronics by a vendor to a customer.

"Vendor" means a person in the business of engaging in portable electronics transactions directly or indirectly.

2011, c. 222.

§ 38.2-1876. Licensure of vendors.

A. A vendor is required to hold a limited lines property and casualty insurance agent license to sell or offer coverage under a policy of portable electronics insurance.

B. On or before May 1, 2021, and biennially thereafter, each vendor licensed as a limited lines property and casualty insurance agent shall submit to the Commission a renewal application, along with a nonrefundable renewal application processing fee prescribed by the Commission, for the renewal of the license. Any limited lines property and casualty insurance agent license for which the renewal application and nonrefundable renewal application processing fee have been received by the Commission and all other applicable licensing and renewal provisions in this chapter have been met shall, unless the license has been terminated, suspended, or revoked, be renewed for a two-year period. Any limited lines property and casualty insurance agent license for which the renewal application and nonrefundable renewal application processing fee have not been received by the Commission shall automatically be terminated.

C. A license issued under this article shall authorize any employee or authorized representative of a licensed vendor to sell or offer portable electronics insurance coverage under a policy of portable electronics insurance to a customer at each location at which the vendor engages in portable electronics transactions.

D. The acts of a licensed vendor's employee or authorized representative offering to sell coverage under a policy of portable electronics insurance shall be deemed to be the acts of the vendor for purposes of this article.

E. Every licensed vendor shall maintain a list of all locations in the Commonwealth where the vendor offers coverage under a policy of portable electronics insurance and shall make the list available to the Commissioner for inspection upon request.

F. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a license issued pursuant to this article shall authorize the licensed vendor's employees and authorized representatives to engage only in those activities that are expressly permitted in this article.

2011, c. 222; 2019, c. 675.

§ 38.2-1877. Requirements for sale of portable electronics insurance.

A. At every location where portable electronics insurance is offered to customers, the vendor shall make available to a prospective customer brochures or other written materials that:

1. Disclose that portable electronics insurance may provide a duplication of coverage already provided by a customer's homeowner's insurance policy, renter's insurance policy, or other source of coverage;

2. State that the purchase of coverage by a customer of portable electronics insurance is not required in order to purchase or lease portable electronics or services;

3. Summarize the material terms of the insurance coverage, including: (i) the identity of the insurer; (ii) the amount of any applicable deductible and how it is to be paid; (iii) benefits of the coverage; and (iv) key terms and conditions of coverage such as whether portable electronics may be repaired or replaced with similar make and model reconditioned or nonoriginal manufacturer parts or equipment; and

4. Summarize the process for filing a claim, including a description of (i) any requirements to return portable electronics and the maximum fee applicable in the event the customer fails to comply with any equipment return requirements and (ii) proof of loss requirements.

B. Portable electronics insurance may be offered on a month-to-month or other periodic basis as an individual policy or a group or master commercial inland marine policy issued to a vendor of portable electronics under which the individual customer may elect to purchase coverage.

C. An insurer or vendor of portable electronics insurance may issue notices and correspondence by mail or by electronic means as set forth in this subsection. The consumer may provide an electronic mail address to the insurer or vendor of portable electronics which shall be considered to be the customer's consent to receive notices and correspondence by electronic means so long as a disclosure to that effect is provided to the customer within 30 days following the purchase of portable electronics insurance.

2011, c. 222; 2019, c. 523.

§ 38.2-1878. Authority of vendors of portable electronics.

A. The employees and authorized representatives of vendors may sell or offer portable electronics insurance to customers and shall not be subject to licensure as an insurance producer under this chapter provided that:

1. The vendor obtains a limited lines property and casualty insurance agent license;

2. The vendor selling the portable electronics insurance provides a training program for all employees and authorized representatives of the vendor. The training program shall consist of instruction about the portable electronics insurance offered to customers, the disclosures required under § 38.2-1877, and the conduct prohibited by § 38.2-512. The training required by this subdivision may be delivered in person or in an electronic form. The licensed producer designated by the vendor as being responsible for its compliance with the insurance laws, rules, and regulations of the Commonwealth, as required by § 38.2-1820, shall hold a property and casualty insurance agent license and shall supervise the administration of the training program required by this subdivision;

3. No employee or authorized representative of a vendor of portable electronics is compensated based primarily on the number of customers who purchase portable electronics insurance coverage but may receive compensation for activities under the limited lines license that is incidental to their overall compensation; and

4. The employee or authorized representative of the vendor of portable electronics insurance does not represent or otherwise hold himself out as a licensed insurance producer.

B. The license authority of any vendor licensed as a limited lines property and casualty producer selling portable electronics insurance shall terminate immediately if the sole licensed responsible producer designated for the vendor's compliance with the insurance laws, rules, and regulations of the Commonwealth is removed for any reason, a new responsible producer has not been appointed, and the Commission notified within 30 calendar days of such removal and of the newly designated responsible producer.

C. A vendor shall report any violation of this article to the Commissioner within 30 days of discovery of the violation by the vendor.

D. Any charge to the customer for portable electronics insurance that is not included in the cost associated with the purchase or lease of portable electronics or related services shall be separately itemized on the customer's bill. If the charge for portable electronics insurance is included in the cost associated with the purchase or lease of portable electronics or related services, the vendor shall clearly and conspicuously disclose to the customer that the charge for the portable electronics or services covers the cost of the insurance.

E. The charges for portable electronics insurance coverage may be billed and collected by the vendor of portable electronics insurance. Vendors billing and collecting premiums for portable electronics insurance shall be required to comply with the provisions of § 38.2-1813. Vendors may receive compensation for billing and collection services.

F. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, applicants for licensure pursuant to this article whose home state does not issue a producer license with a similar line of authority as the license authorized by this article shall be issued a limited lines property and casualty license for portable electronics insurance. Any licensee whose home state does not have property and casualty limited lines for portable electronics insurance or similar line of authority in its home state after July 1, 2014, or such later date as may be determined by the Commission, shall obtain a full property and casualty license or its license shall terminate in Virginia. For purposes of this subsection, "home state" means the District of Columbia and any state or territory of the United States except Virginia, or any province of Canada, in which an applicant maintains such person's principal place of residence or principal place of business.

2011, c. 222; 2013, c. 9.

§ 38.2-1879. Suspension or revocation of license.

If a vendor of portable electronics or its employee or authorized representative violates any provision of this article, the Commission may do any of the following:

1. After notice and hearing, impose fines and penalties in accordance with § 38.2-218; and

2. After notice and hearing, impose any such other penalties that the Commission deems necessary and reasonable to carry out the purpose of this article, including: (i) suspending the privilege of transacting portable electronics insurance pursuant to this article at specific business locations where violations have occurred; (ii) suspending or revoking the ability of individual employees or authorized representatives to act under the license; and (iii) imposing a penalty in accordance with § 38.2-218 on the licensed producer designated by the vendor pursuant to § 38.2-1820.

2011, c. 222.

§ 38.2-1880. What laws applicable; rulemaking authority.

A. Except as otherwise provided in this article and except where the context otherwise requires, all of the provisions of this title apply to this article.

B. Pursuant to the authority granted by § 38.2-223, the Commission may promulgate such rules and regulations as may be necessary or appropriate for the administration and enforcement of this article.

2011, c. 222.