Procedures for the Conduct of Voting on a Plan of Reorganization of a Domestic Mutual Life Insurer

Adopted New Rules: N.J.A.C. 11:2-14
Proposed: December 18, 2000 at 32 N.J.R. 4330(a)
Adopted: February 1, 2001 by Karen L. Suter, Commissioner, Department of Banking and Insurance
Filed: February 8, 2001 as R. 2001 d. 84, without change.
Authority: N.J.S.A. 17:1-15e, 17:17C-1 et seq; and 17:33-2
Effective Date: March 5, 2001
Expiration Date: November 30, 2005

Summary of Public Comments and Agency Responses:

The Department of Banking and Insurance ("Department") received two timely written comments from the Prudential Insurance Company of America and William J. Clark.

COMMENT: One commenter supported the adoption of the proposed rules and believed that the rules are tailored to achieve their stated objective to ensure that all policyholders who are qualified to vote are able to do so and the vote will be conducted on an accurate, fair and equitable basis.

RESPONSE: The Department appreciates the support of its proposal.

COMMENT: One commenter stated that the status of group policyholders and their groups, needs protection and clarification in the proposal. The commenter stated that governmental and union policyholders will receive only a proportionate share of one vote of their parent group if the proposal is adopted. Thus, the commenter stated, a single non-group policyholder will participate with a multi-member group in voting, dividends, stock conversion and other rights.

RESPONSE: Upon review of the commenterís concerns, the Department has determined no change is required. The voting rights of policyholders and a determination of who is a "qualified voter" are expressly set forth in the statute. N.J.S.A. 17:17C-1 defines a "qualified voter" as having "the meaning set forth in N.J.S.A. 17B:18-13 or N.J.S.A. 17B:18-23, as applicable." These statutes define qualified voters as every policyholder who is 18 years of age or more and whose policy has been in force for at least one year. "Policyholder" is defined in these statutes to mean: the person insured under an individual policy of life or health insurance; the person to whom any annuity or pure endowment contract is presently or prospectively payable by the terms of an individual annuity or pure endowment contract; the policyholder of any group life or health policy, and the contract holder of any group annuity contract. Accordingly, the group policyholder or cContract holder is the entity qualified to vote. Individual certificate holders are not qualified voters by the express provisions of the applicable statutes.

Federal Standards Statement

A Federal standards analysis is not required because the adopted new rules are not subject to any Federal requirements or standards.

Full text of the adopted new rules follows: