Chapter 48.24 RCW

GROUP LIFE AND ANNUITIES

Sections

48.24.010Group requirements.
48.24.020Employee groups.
48.24.025Payment of premium by employee when compensation suspended due to labor dispute.
48.24.027Offering group life insurance to state residentsCommissioner's findings.
48.24.030Dependents of employees or members of certain groups.
48.24.035Credit union groups.
48.24.040Debtor groups.
48.24.045Certain associations as groups.
48.24.050Labor union groups.
48.24.060Public employee associations.
48.24.070Trustee groups.
48.24.080Insurance producer groups.
48.24.090Washington state patrol.
48.24.095Financial institutions.
48.24.100Standard provisions.
48.24.110Grace period.
48.24.120Incontestability.
48.24.130The contractRepresentations.
48.24.140Insurability.
48.24.150Misstatement of age or sex.
48.24.160BeneficiaryFuneral, last illness expenses.
48.24.170Certificates.
48.24.180Conversion on termination of eligibility.
48.24.190Conversion on termination of policy.
48.24.200Death pending conversion.
48.24.210Limitation of liability.
48.24.240Readjustment of premium.
48.24.260Application of dividends or rate reductions.
48.24.270Payment of proceedsInterest, when delayed.
48.24.280Group life insuranceNoninsurance benefits.
48.24.900ConstructionChapter applicable to state registered domestic partnerships2009 c 521.

NOTES:

Charitable gift annuity business: Chapter 48.38 RCW.
Exemption of proceeds, group life: RCW 48.18.420.
Group insurance on irrigation district employees: RCW 87.03.160.
Payment to person designated in policy or by assignment discharges insurer: RCW 48.18.370.
Payroll deduction of public employees for insurance and medical benefits authorized: RCW 41.04.020.
Payroll deductions and employees' contribution for group insurance on employees of second-class cities or towns authorized: RCW 35.23.460.
Policy dividends are payable to real party in interest: RCW 48.18.340.
Policy forms, execution, filing, etc.: Chapter 48.18 RCW.


Group requirements.

(1) No contract of life insurance shall hereafter be delivered or issued for delivery in this state insuring the lives of more than one individual unless to one of the groups as provided for in this chapter, and unless in compliance with the other provisions of this chapter.
(2) Subsection (1) of this section shall not apply to contracts of life insurance
(a) insuring only individuals related by marriage, by blood, or by legal adoption; or
(b) insuring only individuals having a common interest through ownership of a business enterprise, or of a substantial legal interest or equity therein, and who are actively engaged in the management thereof; or
(c) insuring the lives of employees and retirees under contracts executed with the state health care authority under the provisions of chapter 41.05 RCW.
[ 1988 c 107 § 22; 1973 1st ex.s. c 147 § 11; 1947 c 79 § .24.01; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.01.]

NOTES:

ImplementationEffective dates1988 c 107: See RCW 41.05.901.
Effective dateEffect of vetoSavingsSeverability1973 1st ex.s. c 147: See notes following RCW 41.05.050.



Employee groups.

The lives of a group of individuals may be insured under a policy issued to an employer, or to the trustees of a fund established by an employer, which employer or trustee is deemed the policyholder, insuring employees of the employer for the benefit of persons other than the employer, subject to the following requirements:
(1) The employees eligible for insurance under the policy shall be all of the employees of the employer, or all of any class or classes thereof determined by conditions pertaining to their employment. The policy may provide that the term "employees" shall include the employees of one or more subsidiary corporations, and the employees, individual proprietors, and partners of one or more affiliated corporations, proprietors or partnerships if the business of the employer and of such affiliated corporations, proprietors or partnerships is under common control through stock ownership, contract or otherwise. The policy may provide that the term "employees" shall include the individual proprietor or partners if the employer is an individual proprietor or a partnership. The policy may provide that the term "employees" shall include retired employees.
(2) The premium for the policy shall be paid by the policyholder, either wholly from the employer's funds or funds contributed by him or her, or partly from such funds and partly from funds contributed by the insured employees, or from funds contributed entirely by the insured employees. A policy on which no part of the premium is to be derived from funds contributed by the insured employees must insure all eligible employees, or all except any as to whom evidence of individual insurability is not satisfactory to the insurer.
(3) The policy must cover at least two employees at date of issue.
(4) The amounts of insurance under the policy must be based upon some plan precluding individual selection either by the employees or by the employer or trustees.
[ 2005 c 222 § 1; 1955 c 303 § 29; 1947 c 79 § .24.02; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.02.]



Payment of premium by employee when compensation suspended due to labor dispute.

Any employee whose compensation includes group life insurance, the premiums for which are paid in full or in part by an employer including the state of Washington, its political subdivisions, or municipal corporations, or paid by payroll deduction, may pay the premiums as they become due directly to the policyholder whenever the employee's compensation is suspended or terminated directly or indirectly as the result of a strike, lockout, or other labor dispute, for a period not exceeding six months and at the rate and coverages as the policy provides. During that period of time the policy may not be altered or changed. Nothing in this section shall be deemed to impair the right of the insurer to make normal decreases or increases of the premium rate upon expiration and renewal of the policy, in accordance with the provisions of the policy. Thereafter, if such insurance coverage is no longer available, then the employee shall be given the opportunity to purchase an individual policy at a rate consistent with rates filed by the insurer with the commissioner. When the employee's compensation is so suspended or terminated, the employee shall be notified immediately by the policyholder in writing, by mail addressed to the address last on record with the policyholder, that the employee may pay the premiums to the policyholder as they become due as provided in this section.
Payment of the premiums must be made when due or the insurance coverage may be terminated by the insurer.
The provisions of any insurance policy contrary to provisions of this section are void and unenforceable after May 29, 1975.

NOTES:

Severability1975 1st ex.s. c 117: See note following RCW 48.21.075.



Offering group life insurance to state residentsCommissioner's findings.

(1) Group life insurance offered to a resident of this state under a group life insurance policy may be issued to a group other than one described in RCW 48.24.020, 48.24.035, 48.24.040, 48.24.045, 48.24.050, 48.24.060, 48.24.070, 48.24.080, 48.24.090, or 48.24.095 subject to the requirements in this subsection. No such group life insurance policy may be delivered in this state unless the commissioner finds that:
(a) The issuance of the group policy is not contrary to the best interest of the public;
(b) The issuance of the group policy would result in economies of acquisition or administration; and
(c) The benefits are reasonable in relation to the premiums charged.
(2) No such group life insurance coverage may be offered under this section in this state by an insurer under a policy issued in another state unless the commissioner or the insurance commissioner of another state having requirements substantially similar to those contained in subsection (1)(a) through (c) of this section has made a determination that the requirements have been met.
(3) The premium for the policy shall be paid either from the policyholder's funds or from funds contributed by the covered persons, or from both.



Dependents of employees or members of certain groups.

(1) Insurance under any group life insurance policy issued under RCW 48.24.020, 48.24.050, 48.24.060, 48.24.070, 48.24.090, or 48.24.027 may be extended to insure the spouse and dependent children, or any class or classes thereof, of each insured employee or member who so elects, in amounts in accordance with a plan that precludes individual selection by the employees or members or by the employer or labor union or trustee, and which insurance on the life of any one family member including a spouse shall not be in excess of the amount on the life of the insured employee or member.
Premiums for the insurance on the family members shall be paid by the policyholder, either from the employer's funds, funds contributed to him or her, employee's funds, trustee's funds, or labor union funds.
(2) A spouse insured under this section has the same conversion right as to the insurance on his or her life as is vested in the employee or member under this chapter.

NOTES:

Severability1975 1st ex.s. c 266: See note following RCW 48.01.010.



Credit union groups.

The lives of a group of individuals may be insured under a policy issued to a credit union, which shall be deemed the policyholder, to insure eligible members of such credit union for the benefit of persons other than the credit union or its officials, subject to the following requirements:
(1) The members eligible for insurance under the policy shall be all of the members of a credit union, or all except any as to whom evidence of individual insurability is not satisfactory to the insurer, or all of any class or classes thereof determined by conditions pertaining to their age or membership in the credit union or both.
(2) The premium for the policy shall be paid by the policyholder, either wholly from the credit union's funds, or partly from such funds and partly from funds contributed by the insured members specifically for their insurance. No policy may be issued for which the entire premium is to be derived from funds contributed by the insured members specifically for their insurance.
(3) The policy must cover at least twenty-five members at the date of issue.
(4) The amount of insurance under the policy shall not exceed the amount of the total shares and deposits of the member.
(5) As used herein, "credit union" means a credit union organized and operating under the federal credit union act of 1934 or chapter 31.12 RCW.

NOTES:

Severability1982 c 181: See note following RCW 48.03.010.



Debtor groups.

The lives of a group of individuals may be insured under a policy issued to a creditor, who shall be deemed the policyholder, to insure debtors of the creditors, subject to the provisions of the insurance code relating to credit life insurance and credit accident and health insurance and to the following requirements:
(1) The debtors eligible for insurance under the policy shall be all of the debtors of the creditor whose indebtedness is repayable in installments, or all of any class or classes thereof determined by conditions pertaining to the indebtedness or to the purchase giving rise to the indebtedness, except that nothing in this section shall preclude an insurer from excluding from the classes eligible for insurance classes of debtors determined by age. The policy may provide that the term "debtors" shall include the debtors of one or more subsidiary corporations, and the debtors of one or more affiliated corporations, proprietors or partnerships if the business of the policyholder and of such affiliated corporations, proprietors or partnerships is under common control through stock ownership, contract, or otherwise.
(2) The premium for the policy shall be paid by the policyholder, either from the creditor's funds, or from charges collected from the insured debtors, or from both. A policy on which part or all of the premium is to be derived from the collection from the insured debtors of identifiable charges not required of uninsured debtors shall not include, in the class or classes of debtors eligible for insurance, debtors under obligations outstanding at its date of issue without evidence of individual insurability unless at least seventy-five percent of the then eligible debtors elect to pay the required charges. A policy on which no part of the premium is to be derived from the collection of such identifiable charges must insure all eligible debtors, or all except any as to whom evidence of individual insurability is not satisfactory to the insurer.
(3) The policy may be issued only if the group of eligible debtors is then receiving new entrants at the rate of at least one hundred persons yearly, or may reasonably be expected to receive at least one hundred new entrants during the first policy year, and only if the policy reserves to the insurer the right to require evidence of individual insurability if less than seventy-five percent of the new entrants become insured.
(4) Payment by the debtor insured under any such group life insurance contract of the premium charged the creditor by the insurer for such insurance pertaining to the debtor, shall not be deemed to constitute a charge upon a loan in violation of any usury law.
[ 1967 c 150 § 28; 1961 c 194 § 9; 1955 c 303 § 18; 1947 c 79 § .24.04; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.04.]



Certain associations as groups.

The lives of a group of individuals may be insured under a policy issued to an association which has been in active existence for at least one year, which has a constitution and bylaws, and which has been organized and is maintained in good faith for purposes other than that of obtaining insurance. Under this group life insurance policy, the association shall be deemed the policyholder. The policy may insure association employees, members, or their employees. Beneficiaries under the policy shall be persons other than the association or its officers or trustees. The term "employees" as used in this section may include retired employees.



Labor union groups.

The lives of a group of individuals may be insured under a policy issued to a labor union, which shall be deemed the policyholder, to insure members of such union for the benefit of persons other than the union or any of its officials, representatives or agents, subject to the following requirements:
(1) The members eligible for insurance under the policy shall be all of the members of the union, or all of any class or classes thereof determined by conditions pertaining to their employment, or to membership in the union, or both.
(2) The premium for the policy shall be paid by the policyholder, either wholly from the union's funds, or partly from such funds and partly from funds contributed by the insured members specifically for their insurance. No policy may be issued of which the entire premium is to be derived from funds contributed by the insured members specifically for their insurance. A policy on which the premium is to be derived in part from funds contributed by the insured members specifically for their insurance may be placed in force only if at least seventy-five percent of the then eligible members, excluding any as to whom evidence of individual insurability is not satisfactory to the insurer, elect to make the required contributions. A policy on which no part of the premium is to be derived from funds contributed by the insured members specifically for their insurance must insure all eligible members, or all except any as to whom evidence of individual insurability is not satisfactory to the insurer.
(3) The policy must cover at least twenty-five members at date of issue.
(4) The amounts of insurance under the policy must be based upon some plan precluding individual selection either by the members or by the union.
[ 1955 c 303 § 19; 1947 c 79 § .24.05; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.05.]



Public employee associations.

The lives of a group of public employees may be insured under a policy issued to the departmental head or to a trustee, or issued to an association of public employees formed for purposes other than obtaining insurance and having, when the policy is placed in force, a membership in the classes eligible for insurance of not less than seventy-five percent of the number of employees eligible for membership in such classes, which department head or trustee or association shall be deemed the policyholder, to insure such employees for the benefit of persons other than the policyholder or any of its officials, subject to the following requirements:
(1) The persons eligible for insurance under the policy shall be all of the employees of the department or members of the association, or all of any class or classes thereof determined by conditions pertaining to their employment, or to membership in the association, or both.
(2) The premium for the policy shall be paid by the policyholder, in whole or in part either from salary deductions authorized by, or charges collected from, the insured employees or members specifically for the insurance, or from the association's own funds, or from both. Any such deductions from salary may be paid by the employer to the association or directly to the insurer. No policy may be placed in force unless and until at least seventy-five percent of the then eligible employees or association members, excluding any as to whom evidence of individual insurability is not satisfactory to the insurer, have elected to be covered and have authorized their employer to make any required deductions from salary.
(3) The rate of charges to the insured employees or members specifically for the insurance, and the dues of the association if they include the cost of insurance, shall be determined according to each attained age or in not less than four reasonably spaced attained age groups. In no event shall the rate of such dues or charges be level for all members regardless of attained age.
(4) The policy must cover at least twenty-five persons at date of issue.
(5) The amounts of insurance under the policy must be based upon some plan precluding individual selection either by the employees or members or by the association.
As used herein, "public employees" means employees of the United States government, or of any state, or of any political subdivision or instrumentality of any of them.

NOTES:

Severability1973 1st ex.s. c 152: See note following RCW 48.05.140.



Trustee groups.

The lives of a group of individuals may be insured under a policy issued to the trustees of a fund established by two or more employers or by two or more employer members of an employers' association, or by one or more labor unions, or by one or more employers and one or more labor unions, or by one or more employers and one or more labor unions whose members are in the same or related occupations or trades, which trustees shall be deemed the policyholder, to insure employees or members for the benefit of persons other than the employers or the unions, subject to the following requirements:
(1) If the policy is issued to two or more employer members of an employers' association, such policy may be issued only if (a) the association has been in existence for at least five years and was formed for purposes other than obtaining insurance and (b) the participating employers, meaning such employer members whose employees are to be insured, constitute at date of issue at least fifty percent of the total employers eligible to participate, unless the number of persons covered at date of issue exceeds six hundred, in which event such participating employers must constitute at least twenty-five percent of such total employers in either case omitting from consideration any employer whose employees are already covered for group life insurance.
(2) The persons eligible for insurance shall be all of the employees of the employers or all of the members of the unions, or all of any class or classes thereof determined by conditions pertaining to their employment, or to membership in the unions, or to both. The policy may provide that the term "employees" shall include the individual proprietor or partners if an employer is an individual proprietor or a partnership. The policy may provide that the term "employees" shall include the trustees or their employees, or both, if their duties are connected with such trusteeship. The policy may provide that the term "employees" shall include retired employees.
(3) The premium for the policy shall be paid by the trustees wholly from funds contributed by the employer or employers of the insured persons, or by the union or unions, or partly or wholly from funds contributed by the insured persons, or any combination thereof. A policy on which all or part of the premium is to be derived from funds contributed by the insured persons specifically for their insurance may be placed in force if the eligible persons elect to make the required contributions. A policy on which no part of the premium is to be derived from funds contributed by the insured persons specifically for their insurance must insure all eligible persons, or all except any as to whom evidence of individual insurability is not satisfactory to the insurer.
(4) The policy must cover at least twenty persons at date of issue.
(5) The amounts of insurance under the policy must be based upon some plan precluding individual selection either by the insured persons or by the policyholder, employers, or unions.



Insurance producer groups.

The lives of a group of individuals may be insured under a policy issued to a principal, or if such principal is a life insurer, by or to such principal, covering when issued not less than twenty-five insurance producers of such principal, subject to the following requirements:
(1) The insurance producers eligible for insurance under the policy shall be those who are under contract to render personal services for such principal for a commission or other fixed or ascertainable compensation.
(2) The policy must insure either all of the insurance producers or all of any class or classes thereof, determined by conditions pertaining to the services to be rendered by such insurance producers, except that if a policy is intended to insure several such classes it may be issued to insure any such class of which seventy-five percent are covered and extended to other classes as seventy-five percent thereof express the desire to be covered.
(3) The premium on the policy shall be paid by the principal or by the principal and the insurance producers jointly. When the premium is paid by the principal and insurance producers jointly and the benefits of the policy are offered to all eligible insurance producers, the policy, when issued, must insure not less than seventy-five percent of such insurance producers.
(4) The amounts of insurance shall be based upon some plan which will preclude individual selection.
(5) The insurance shall be for the benefit of persons other than the principal.
(6) Such policy shall terminate if, subsequent to issue, the number of insurance producers insured falls below twenty-five lives or seventy-five percent of the number eligible and the contribution of the insurance producers, if the premiums are on a renewable term insurance basis, exceed one dollar per month per one thousand dollars of insurance coverage plus any additional premium per one thousand dollars of insurance coverage charged to cover one or more hazardous occupations.
[ 2008 c 217 § 32; 1949 c 190 § 33; Rem. Supp. 1949 § 45.24.08.]

NOTES:

SeverabilityEffective date2008 c 217: See notes following RCW 48.03.020.



Washington state patrol.

The lives of a group of individuals may be insured under a policy issued to the commanding officer, which commanding officer shall be deemed the policyholder, to insure not less than twenty-five of the members of the Washington state patrol. Such policy shall be for the benefit of beneficiaries as designated by the individuals so insured, and the premium thereon may be paid by such members. Not less than seventy-five percent of all eligible members of such Washington state patrol, or of any unit thereof determined by conditions pertaining to their employment, may be so insured.
[1947 c 79 § .24.09; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.09.]



Financial institutions.

The lives of a group of individuals may be insured under a policy issued to a state or federally regulated financial institution, which financial institution shall be deemed the policyholder. The purpose of the policy shall be to insure the depositors or depositor members of the financial institution for the benefit of persons other than the financial institution or its officers. The issuance of the policy shall be subject to the following requirements:
(1) The persons eligible for insurance under the policy shall be the depositors or deposit members of such financial institution, except any as to whom evidence of individual insurability is not satisfactory to the insurer, or any class or classes thereof determined by conditions of age.
(2) The policy must cover at least one hundred persons at the date of issue.
(3) The amount of insurance under the policy shall not exceed the amount of the deposit account of the insured person or five thousand dollars whichever is less.
(4) Financial institutions referred to herein must be authorized to do business in the state of Washington and have their depositors' or members' deposit accounts insured against loss to the amount of at least fifteen thousand dollars by a corporate agency of the federal government.



Standard provisions.

No policy of group life insurance shall be delivered or issued for delivery in this state unless it contains in substance the standard provisions as required by RCW 48.24.110 to 48.24.200, inclusive, or provisions which in the opinion of the commissioner are more favorable to the individuals insured, or at least as favorable to such individuals and more favorable to the policyholder; except that:
(1) Provisions set forth in RCW 48.24.160 to 48.24.200, inclusive, shall not apply to policies issued to a creditor to insure its debtors.
(2) If the group life insurance policy is on a plan of insurance other than the term plan, it shall contain a nonforfeiture provision or provisions which in the opinion of the commissioner is or are equitable to the insured persons and to the policyholder, but such nonforfeiture benefits are not required to be the same as those required for individual life insurance policies.
[1947 c 79 § .24.10; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.10.]



Grace period.

There shall be a provision that the policyholder is entitled to a grace period of thirty-one days for the payment of any premium due except the first, during which grace period the death benefit coverage shall continue in force, unless the policyholder has given the insurer written notice of discontinuance in advance of the date of discontinuance and in accordance with the terms of the policy. The policy may provide that the policyholder shall be liable to the insurer for the payment of a pro rata premium for the time the policy was in force during such grace period.
[1947 c 79 § .24.11; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.11.]



Incontestability.

There shall be a provision that the validity of the policy shall not be contested, except for nonpayment of premiums, after it has been in force for two years from its date of issue; and that no statement made by an individual insured under the policy relating to his or her insurability shall be used in contesting the validity of the insurance with respect to which such statement was made after such insurance has been in force prior to the contest for a period of two years during such individual's lifetime nor unless it is contained in a written instrument signed by him [or her].
[ 2009 c 549 § 7108; 1947 c 79 § 24.12; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.12.]



The contractRepresentations.

There shall be a provision that a copy of the application, if any, of the policyholder shall be attached to the policy when issued and become a part of the contract; that all statements made by the policyholder or by the persons insured shall be deemed representations and not warranties, and that no statement made by any person insured shall be used in any contest unless a copy of the instrument containing the statement is or has been furnished to such person or to his or her beneficiary.
[ 2009 c 549 § 7109; 1947 c 79 § .24.13; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.13.]



Insurability.

There shall be a provision setting forth the conditions, if any, under which the insurer reserves the right to require a person eligible for insurance to furnish evidence of individual insurability satisfactory to the insurer as a condition to part or all of his or her coverage.
[ 2009 c 549 § 7110; 1947 c 79 § .24.14; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.14.]



Misstatement of age or sex.

There shall be a provision specifying an equitable adjustment of premiums or of benefits or of both to be made in the event the age or sex of a person insured has been misstated, such provision to contain a clear statement of the method of adjustment to be used.
[ 1983 1st ex.s. c 32 § 22; 1947 c 79 § .24.15; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.15.]



BeneficiaryFuneral, last illness expenses.

There shall be a provision that any sum becoming due by reason of the death of the individual insured shall be payable to the beneficiary designated by such individual, subject to the provisions of the policy in the event there is no designated beneficiary, as to all or any part of such sum, living at the death of the individual insured and subject to any right reserved by the insurer in the policy and set forth in the certificate to pay at its option a part of such sum not exceeding ten percent of such amount or one thousand dollars, whichever is greater, to any person appearing to the insurer to be equitably entitled thereto by reason of having incurred funeral or other expenses incident to the last illness or death of the individual insured.
[ 1981 c 333 § 1; 1979 ex.s. c 199 § 9; 1955 c 303 § 23; 1947 c 79 § .24.16; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.16.]



Certificates.

There shall be a provision that the insurer will issue to the policyholder for delivery to each individual insured a certificate setting forth a statement as to the insurance protection to which he or she is entitled, to whom the insurance benefits are payable, described by name, relationship, or reference to the insurance records of the policyholder or insurer, and the rights and conditions set forth in RCW 48.24.180, 48.24.190 and 48.24.200, following.
[ 2009 c 549 § 7111; 1961 c 194 § 10; 1947 c 79 § .24.17; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.17.]



Conversion on termination of eligibility.

There shall be a provision that if the insurance, or any portion of it, on an individual covered under the policy, other than a child insured pursuant to RCW 48.24.030, ceases because of termination of employment or of membership in the class or classes eligible for coverage under the policy, such individual shall be entitled to have issued to him or her by the insurer, without evidence of insurability, an individual policy of life insurance without disability or other supplementary benefits, provided application for the individual policy shall be made, and the first premium paid to the insurer, within thirty-one days after such termination, and provided further that,
(1) the individual policy shall, at the option of such individual, be on any one of the forms, except term insurance, then customarily issued by the insurer at the age and for the amount applied for;
(2) the individual policy shall be in an amount not in any event in excess of the amount of life insurance which ceases because of such termination nor less than one thousand dollars unless a smaller amount of coverage was provided for such individual under the group policy: PROVIDED, That any amount of insurance which matures on the date of such termination or has matured prior thereto under the group policy as an endowment payable to the individual insured, whether in one sum or in installments or in the form of an annuity, shall not, for the purposes of this provision, be included in the amount which is considered to cease because of such termination; and
(3) the premium on the individual policy shall be at the insurer's then customary rate applicable to the form and amount of the individual policy, to the class of risk to which such individual then belongs, and to his or her age attained on the effective date of the individual policy.
[ 2009 c 549 § 7112; 1955 c 303 § 24; 1947 c 79 § .24.18; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.18.]



Conversion on termination of policy.

There shall be a provision that if the group policy terminates or is amended so as to terminate the insurance of any class of insured individuals, every individual insured thereunder at the date of such termination, other than a child insured pursuant to RCW 48.24.030, whose insurance terminates and who has been so insured for at least five years prior to such termination date shall be entitled to have issued to him or her by the insurer an individual policy of life insurance, subject to the same conditions and limitations as are provided by RCW 48.24.180, except that the group policy may provide that the amount of such individual policy shall not exceed the smaller of (a) [(1)] the amount of the individual's life insurance protection ceasing because of the termination or amendment of the group policy, less the amount of any life insurance for which he or she is or becomes eligible under any group policy issued or reinstated by the same or another insurer within thirty-one days of such termination and (b) [(2)] two thousand dollars.
[ 2009 c 549 § 7113; 1953 c 197 § 13; 1947 c 79 § .24.19; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.19.]



Death pending conversion.

There shall be a provision that if a person insured under the group policy dies during the period within which he or she would have been entitled to have an individual policy issued to him or her in accordance with RCW 48.24.180 and 48.24.190, and before such an individual policy shall have become effective, the amount of life insurance which he or she would have been entitled to have issued to him or her under such individual policy shall be payable as a claim under the group policy, whether or not application for the individual policy or the payment of the first premium therefor has been made.
[ 2009 c 549 § 7114; 1947 c 79 § .24.20; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.20.]



Limitation of liability.

(1) The insurer may in any group life insurance contract provide that it is not liable, or is liable only in a reduced amount, for losses resulting:
(a) From war or any act of war, declared or undeclared, or of service in the military, naval or air forces or in civilian forces auxiliary thereto, or from any cause while a member of any such military, naval or air forces, of any country at war, declared or undeclared.
(b) From aviation under conditions specified in the policy.
(2) The insurer may in any such contract provide that any amount of insurance in excess of one thousand dollars on an individual life may be reduced to one thousand dollars or to any greater amount upon attainment of any age not less than age sixty-five or upon the anniversary of the policy nearest attainment of such age.
[1947 c 79 § .24.21; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.21.]



Readjustment of premium.

Any group life insurance contract may provide for a readjustment of the premium rate based on experience under that contract, at the end of the first or of any subsequent year of insurance, and which readjustment may be made retroactive for such policy year only.
[1947 c 79 § .24.24; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.24.]



Application of dividends or rate reductions.

Any policy dividends hereafter declared, or reduction in rate of premiums hereafter made or continued for the first or any subsequent year of insurance, under any policy of group life insurance heretofore or hereafter issued to any policyholder may be applied to reduce the policyholder's part of the cost of such insurance, except that if the aggregate dividends or refunds or credits under such group policy and any other group policy or contract issued to the policyholder exceed the aggregate contributions of the policyholder toward the cost of the coverages, such excess shall be applied by the policyholder for the sole benefit of insured individuals.
[1947 c 79 § .24.26; Rem. Supp. 1947 § 45.24.26.]



Payment of proceedsInterest, when delayed.

(1) An insurer shall pay the proceeds of any benefits under a policy of group life insurance insuring the life of any person who was a resident of this state at the time of death. The proceeds must be paid not more than thirty days after the insurer has received satisfactory proof of death of the insured. If the proceeds are not paid within the thirty-day period, the insurer shall also pay interest on the proceeds from the date of death of the insured to the date when the proceeds are paid.
(2) The interest required under subsection (1) of this section accrues commencing on the date of death at the rate then paid by the insurer on other withdrawable policy proceeds left with the company or eight percent, whichever is greater.
(3) Benefits payable that have not been tendered to the beneficiary within ninety days of the receipt of proof of death accrue interest, commencing on the ninety-first day, at the rate under subsection (2) of this section plus three percent.



Group life insuranceNoninsurance benefits.

(1) A life insurer may include the following noninsurance benefits as part of a policy or certificate of group life insurance, with the prior approval of the commissioner:
(a) Will preparation services;
(b) Financial planning and estate planning services;
(c) Probate and estate settlement services;
(d) Grief counseling;
(e) Funeral planning and funeral services, but it must be disclosed that this noninsurance benefit does not constitute an insurance funded prearrangement contract, pursuant to RCW 18.39.255; and
(f) Such other services as the commissioner may identify by rule.
(2) The commissioner may adopt rules to regulate the disclosure of noninsurance benefits permitted under this section, including but not limited to guidelines regarding the coverage provided under the policy or certificate of insurance.
(3) Those providing the services listed in subsection (1) of this section must be appropriately licensed.
(4) This section does not require the commissioner to approve any particular proposed noninsurance benefit. The commissioner may disapprove any proposed noninsurance benefit that the commissioner determines may tend to promote or facilitate the violation of any other section of this title.
(5) This section does not expand, limit, or otherwise affect the authority and ethical obligations of those who are authorized by the state supreme court to practice law in this state. This section does not limit the prohibition against the unauthorized practice of law under chapter 2.48 RCW.
(6) This section does not affect the application of chapter 21.20 RCW.



ConstructionChapter applicable to state registered domestic partnerships2009 c 521.

For the purposes of this chapter, the terms spouse, marriage, marital, husband, wife, widow, widower, next of kin, and family shall be interpreted as applying equally to state registered domestic partnerships or individuals in state registered domestic partnerships as well as to marital relationships and married persons, and references to dissolution of marriage shall apply equally to state registered domestic partnerships that have been terminated, dissolved, or invalidated, to the extent that such interpretation does not conflict with federal law. Where necessary to implement chapter 521, Laws of 2009, gender-specific terms such as husband and wife used in any statute, rule, or other law shall be construed to be gender neutral, and applicable to individuals in state registered domestic partnerships.