Do’s and Dont’s for Corporate Agents

  • January 18, 2024
  • Registrationwala
Want to know More ?

In the insurance industry, the corporate agents are the individuals or entities authorised to act as intermediaries between insurance companies and potential customers. They help individuals and businesses to purchase various insurance policies from specific insurers (with whom they connect). 

 

For example: a specialised corporate agent represents an insurance company or a limited group of companies. The corporate agents have 4 types, corporate agent for life insurance, health insurance, general insurance and composite insurance. In the article, we shared that what are the do’s and don’ts of corporate agents.

What Corporate Agents Do?

The corporate agents usually play multiple roles in the insurance industry. So, to perform these roles, they must have a corporate agent license. After getting the license, they can perform the following activities:

  • They sell the insurance policies to the target audience and help them find a suitable insurance policy from the companies they represent. 
  • Guide the customers in the application process, collect required documents and finally purchase the policy.
  • The corporate agents consult the customers about different policies, coverage options, and premiums. Help them in creating an informed decision.
  • Assist policyholders with the renewal, modifications, claim submission, and any other policy-related assistance.

Who Can Become a Corporate Agent?

  • A company formed under the Companies Act, 2013 (18 of 2013) or any enactment thereof or under any previous company law which was in force.
  • A limited liability partnership (LLP) was formed and registered under the Limited Liability Partnership Act, of 2008.
  • A Co-operative Society registered under the Co-operative Societies Act, 1912 or under any law for the registration of co-operative societies.
  • A banking company as defined in clause (4A) of section 2 of the Act.
  • A corresponding new bank as defined under clause (da) of sub-section (1) of section 5 of the Banking Companies Act, 1949 (10 of 1949).
  • A regional rural bank was established under section 3 of the Regional Rural Banks Act, 1976 (21 of 1976).
  • A Non-Governmental organization or a micro-lending finance organization covered under the Co-operative Societies Act, 1912 or a Non-Banking Financial Company registered with the Reserve Bank of India.
  • Any other person may be recognized by the Authority to act as a corporate agent.

Do’s of Corporate Agents

  • The agents must comply with all provisions of the following regulations/ guidelines/ master circulars. Those are published by the Corporate Agency Regulations, Commission Regulations, Protection of Policyholders, Regulations, Advertisement Regulations, and E-commerce Regulations, among others. Also, ensure compliance with Reg. 14 (vi) and Reg. 18 of Outsourcing Regulations, 2017, and Clause B (3) and sub-clauses 2, 3, and 4 of Clause C of Group Insurance Guidelines, 2005.
  • Make sure that they comply with all provisions of applicable Sections of Insurance Act and all applicable regulations.
  • Seek prior approval of Authority for change of name.
  • Inform the Authority regarding all material disclosures within stipulated timelines
  • Inform the Authority regarding any advertisement / joint sale advertisement issued by the corporate agent.
  • Follow the Code of Conduct of Corporate Agents in letter and spirit.
  • Apply for renewal of Certificate of Registration (CoR) within 90 days of the expiry of the certificate.

General Do’s for Corporate Agents

  • In the case of exclusive corporate agents – 
    • Check the maintenance of net worth and paid-up capital as per Corporate Agency Regulations.
    • Include identification of ‘insurance intermediary’ in the name of the corporate agent.
    • Seek prior approval for change of shareholding exceeding 25%.
    • Submit annual audited financials of Corporate Agency Regulations.
  • Inform the Authority regarding the new tie-up arrangement within 30 days of entering the corporate agency agreement. Also, the corporate agent should obtain prior approval of the Authority to terminate an arrangement.
  • After making the remittance of the fee through NEFT/RTGS/IMPS, the corporate agent is required to submit remittance particulars through the corporate agency portal.
  • While forwarding the premium received from the prospects, a corporate agent must comply with Section 64VB of the Insurance Act, 1938 and keep sufficient evidence for complying with the same.
  • Disclose servicing arrangements, outsourcing agreements, or arrangements with any other name entered with the insurers and remuneration received from insurers.
  • Keep records of Corporate Agency Regulations and Minimum Information Regulations for Inspection and Investigation.
  • Corporate agents whose principal business is other than insurance intermediation must maintain segment-wise reporting, capturing the revenues received for insurance intermediation and other income from insurers.
  • Change in the Board of Directors must be reported within 30 days of such change being executed. Also, common directorship details (if any) should be informed to the Authority and approval sought for common directors (if any).
  • Declare the FDI made to the company as and when required by the Authority.
  • Make sure all SPs and PO certificates are renewed within the validity period. Also, update the details of SPS on the portal in case of new appointments, transfers or discontinuation of SPs.

Don’ts of Corporate Agents

  • Don’t indulge in the forced selling of insurance products along with primary business products; nor induce any client to buy insurance only from you.
  • Don’t undertake multi-level marketing, referral of customers etc., or any other practice that is prohibited under the Insurance Act and Corporate Agency Regulations.
  • Don’t receive any other payouts, by whatever name called, from insurance partners, other than those allowed under Commission Regulations.
  • Don’t solicit insurance through any employee/individual who has not been certified by the Authority to act as a Specified Person.
  • Don’t undergo merger/ acquisition/ amalgamation without prior approval of the Authority.
  • Make sure that the principal officer, specified persons, and any other employee don’t receive any incentives (cash or non-cash) from insurance companies
  • Corporate agents should not procure general insurance commercial products for a sum insured exceeding five crore rupees.
  • General don’ts-
    • Don’t undertake any solicitation practice deviating from the regulations before seeking approval from the Authority
    • Don’t offer insurance products with different names, rates, terms and conditions than those offered by the insurer.
    • Don’t undertake any market practices that are not in policyholders’ interests.
  • Corporate agents whose revenues from other than insurance intermediation activities are more than 50% of their total revenue from all the activities are not allowed to receive rewards from insurers.
  • No corporate agent should promise any insurer to distribute the products of that particular insurer only. Or they are not allowed to receive any signing fee or any other charges (in any name), except those permitted by the Authority.
  • Any promoter/ director/ principal officer should not hold an appointment/ registration of an individual agency or any other mode of insurance distribution to avoid conflict of interest.
  • Not to disclose the portal login ID and password credentials of the Corporate Agent with any other entity insurer, consultant etc.

Conclusion

A corporate agent is a guide for customers who reduce the bridge between the insurance company and the customers. Before becoming a corporate agent for any insurance company, you must know all the compliances of corporate agents. Follow the rules and regulations to avoid the legal consequences. 

 

We at Registrationwala, assist our clients in getting a corporate agent license. You can reach out to us, to know the licensing process, documentation, and fees. From application to finally obtaining the license, we provide the right assistance. 


362 Views
  • Share This Post

Related Posts

Subscribe
to our newsletter

Top