After anticipating accreditation from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners in March at their meeting in Phoenix, the Delaware Department of Insurance earned a five-year accreditation from the organization June 23.
The cancellation of the NAIC spring meeting due to COVID-19 led to a months-long delay in confirmation after the department completed on-site reviews in February. NAIC’s Financial Regulation Standards and Accreditation Committee’s intensive assessment consisted of an in-depth review of department regulations, state laws, financial analyses and examinations of companies, personnel practices, licensing and interaction with domestic insurers.
Insurance Commissioner Trinidad Navarro praised department staff for their performance, saying, “Earning accreditation, along with such impressive feedback, speaks to our team’s hard work and expertise. This was my first accreditation process, but we have been planning for this for years by implementing key processes, working with the General Assembly to pass legislation, setting regulations, and investigating company financials. Our commitment to these sound management principles is representative of our commitment to the public.”
The accreditation renewal signals the department’s performance in these specific areas, but also the achievement of widespread consumer protection — ensuring companies are financially solvent safeguards their ability to pay consumer claims when they arise without going under and taking paid premiums with them.
During the process of accreditation, a comprehensive, independent review of the department took place onsite in Delaware, with a focus on standards and processes related to the financial solvency of insurers domiciled in the state. The work of the Bureau of Examination, Rehabilitation and Guaranty team was scrutinized closely, and interviews were conducted with Navarro and Deputy Insurance Commissioner Tanisha Merced. During the NAIC meeting on the matter, the committee praised the department’s leadership and the expertise of its staff.
“The decades of experience in our office show a passion for public service that is unmatched across the country, and I couldn’t be more proud of the hard work that went into earning this five-year accreditation,” said Merced.
BERG has many roles in the insurance management process, including reviewing applications to do business in Delaware and monitoring the financial operations of 1,800 foreign and 140 domestic insurers licensed in the state.
In total, Delaware-domiciled insurers held approximately $650 billion in assets at year-end 2019. BERG completed 26 financial exams and reviewed an additional 750 projects and form submissions in 2019, completing 485 hours of training as well.