1. What does this new ethics regulation require?
The new regulations stated in Section 2188.6(H)(I)&(J) of the California Code of Regulations requires Property broker-agents and/or Casualty broker-agents and Life-only agents and or/Accident and Health agents to complete four hours of ethics training during their two-year license term. Personal Lines broker-agents will be required to complete two hours of ethics training during their two-year license term.
2. Does a California non-resident have to complete California's ethics training?
Per Section 1749.2 of the California Insurance Code (CIC) California non-residents are exempt from having to complete the ethics continuing education requirement. Although non-resident licensees are except from the ethics continuing education requirement, non-resident licensee must complete the required annuity and long-term care training. The annuity training is provided in Section 1749.8 of the CIC which states that non-resident life-only agent licensees who sell annuity products must complete an initial eight-hour annuity training course and then complete a four-hour annuity training course each license renewal. Similarly, Section 10234.93 of the CIC states that non-resident life-only agents who sell long-term care are required to complete eight hours of long-term care training each license term.
3. Is the ethics requirement in addition to a resident agents' continuing education (CE) requirement?
No, this approved ethics training course will be part of, not in addition to, the agents' CE requirement.
4. Does a licensed agent need to take a single two-hour or four-hour ethics course, in order to meet their specific CE requirement?
No, these approved ethics courses are available in various hour increments. There are one, two, three, four, and more CE credit hours given to approve ethics courses. The agent must complete courses that have credit hours that either meet or exceed the agent's required number of ethics CE hours.
5. Will an agent who is 70 years old and has been licensed in good standing for 30 continuous years in the State of California need to complete the ethics continuing education requirement?
No, Section 1749.3 (e) of the California Insurance Code (CIC) states, in part, that a licensee shall not be required to comply with the continuing education requirements stated in Section 1749 et seq. of the CIC if the licensee submits proof satisfactory to the commissioner that he or she has been a licensee in good standing for 30 continuous years in this state and is 70 years of age or older. However, the licensees that are except from continuing education training stated in Section 1749 (e) of the CIC that sell annuity or long-term care products must complete the required annuity training stated in Section 1749.8 of the CIC and the long-term care training that is stated in Section 10234.93 of the CIC.
6. Will a Life agent, who is selling Life-Limited To The Payment Of Funeral And Burial Expenses insurance, be required to complete the ethics continuing education requirement?
No, since this agent is not required to complete any continuing education the agent is also exempt from the ethics CE requirement. However, the Life-Limited To The Payment Of Funeral And Burial Expenses is required to complete the annuity training requirement stated in Section 1749.8 of the California Insurance Code.
7. When a Life-Only Agent, Accident and Health Agent, Property Broker-Agent, Casualty Broker-Agent or Personal Lines Broker-Agent is placed on inactive status due to a disability, military duty, maternity leave, etc. but is now ready to return to an active status and is making up the continuing education (CE) hours missed throughout each renewal period, how many ethics continuing education courses must the agent take?
When a licensee goes from an inactive status to an active status, the licensee must complete the required continuing education (CE) hours for the renewal terms he or she was inactive (i.e. the licensee is inactive for two license terms, the licensee would need to complete 48 hours of continuing education credit). After January 1, 2007, the inactive licensee would need to complete the number of required continuing education hours and a portion of the continuing education hours would need to meet the ethics CE requirement. For example, if a Property Broker-Agent licensee is inactive for two license terms after the January 1, 2007 (the effective date of the ethics CE requirement) the licensee would need to complete a total of eight hours of ethics continuing education in order to have a license with an active status.
8. If an applicant was recently licensed and took 12 hours of code and ethics, as part of their pre-licensing requirement, will this agent still need to take the ethics approved class?
Yes, ethics continuing education courses are developed to meet established ethics curriculum standards. The prelicensing code and ethics course do not meet those standards. The newly licensed Life-Only Agent and/or Accident and Health Agent and/or Property Broker-Agent and/or Casualty Broker-Agent will be required to complete four hours of an approved ethics continuing education course during his or her two-year license term. The newly licensed Personal Lines Broker-Agent will be required to complete two hours of approved ethics continuing education during his or her two-year license term.
9. The ethics continuing education requirement takes effect on January 1, 2007. If an agent completed ethics continuing education in 2006 and the agent's license expires on December 31, 2006, would the agent be required to take the ethic continuing education during agents' 2007-2008 renewal cycle?
Yes, since the agent's license renews on December 31, 2006 and the ethics continuing education requirement is not effective until January 1, 2007, the agent would need to take an ethics continuing education course during each of the agent's next renewal periods. This agent's next renewal period is January 1, 2007 to December 31, 2009.
10. If an agent renews his or her license in 2006 and after the license is renewed, the agent then completes an ethics approved course, will this ethics class be counted towards their 2008 renewal period?
Yes, the ethics continuing education would need to be completed during each of the agent's next renewal periods. For example, if a Life-only and/or Accident and Health agent renews his or her license on September 30, 2006, the agent could then complete a four-hour ethics continuing education course on October 15, 2006 to meet the ethics training requirement for the October 1, 2006 through September 30, 2008 license renewal.
11. If an agent's license is going to expire on March 31, 2007, can he take the ethics continuing education requirement prior to January 1, 2007?
Yes, since the agent is currently in the middle the renewal period (April 1, 2005 to March 31, 2007), the ethics continuing education requirement can be completed prior to January 1, 2007 since the continuing education credit will count after the effective date of the ethics continuing education requirement.
12. If a Property and/or Casualty Broker-Agent's license is going to expire on or after January 31, 2007 and the agent has already completed the required continuing education hours, but has not yet taken the ethics CE course, must the agent also take an ethics course in order for the license to be renewed? Also, will the extra 4 hours of continuing education credit be carried forward into the next renewal period?
Yes, the agent must complete the ethics continuing education credit in order for the license to be renewed. Yes, the continuing education hours are carried over but the ethics continuing education requirement does not carry forward. The agent will begin his or her next license term, February 1, 2007 to January 31, 2009, with four hours of credit that were carried over. The agent must complete 20 continuing education hours to meet the 24 hours continuing education requirement. During the February 1, 2007 to January 31, 2009 license term, the licensee must complete 4 hours of ethics continuing education as a part of the remaining 20 hours of continuing education that need to be completed. The ethics continuing education must be completed each license term.