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REPUBLIC ACT NO. 1554

Added by Ronel Jess Jimenez

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AN ACT TO AMEND THE INSURANCE ACT SO AS TO MAKE THE ADJUSTERS OF FIRE INSURANCE CLAIMS SUBJECT TO THE SUPERVISION OF THE INSURANCE COMMISSIONER

Section 1. Act Numbered Twenty-four hundred and twenty-seven known as “The Insurance Act,” is hereby amended by inserting after section one hundred and ninety-two thereof the following new section:
“ADJUSTERS

“Section 192-A. (a) No person, firm, association or corporation shall act as an adjuster, as hereinafter defined, unless authorized so to act by virtue of a license issued or renewed by the insurance commissioner pursuant to the provisions of this section: Provided, That in the case of a natural person, he must be a Filipino citizen and in the case of a firm, association or corporation, at least sixty per centum of its capital must be owned by citizens of the Philippines, but those already acting as adjusters at the time of the approval of this Act not having this qualification shall, if otherwise qualified, be authorized to continue in business until their death in case of natural persons, or up to the expiration of their term in case of juridical persons, but not more than ten years after the effectivity of this Act. However, nothing contained in this Act shall in any way impair or abridge whatever rights may be granted to citizens and juridical entities of the United States of America under the agreement between the Republic of the Philippines and the United States of America signed July fourth, nineteen hundred forty-six, as revised on September sixth, nineteen hundred fifty-five.

“(b) An adjuster may be an independent adjuster or a public adjuster.

(1) The term “independent adjuster” means any person, firm, association or corporation which, for money, commission or any other thing of value, acts for or on behalf of an insurer in the investigation and adjusting of claims arising under fire insurance contracts or fire police issued by such insurer, or which performs such duties required by such insurer as are incidental to such claims.

“(2) The term “public adjuster” means any person, firm, association or corporation which, for money, commission or any other thing of value, acts on behalf of an insured in negotiating for, or effecting, the settlement of a claim or claims of the said insured arising under fire insurance contracts or fire policies, or which advertises for, or solicits employment as an adjuster of such claims.

“(c) Adjusters shall be licensed as independent adjusters or public adjusters. No adjuster shall act on behalf of an insurer unless said adjuster is licensed as an independent adjuster. And no adjuster shall act behalf of an insured unless said adjuster is licensed as a public adjuster: Provided, however, That when a firm or person has been licensed as a public adjuster, he shall not be granted another license as independent adjuster and vice versa.

“(d) Before any such license or any renewal thereof may be issued by the insurance commissioner there shall be filed by the person interested a written application in the form or forms prescribed by the insurance commissioner which shall contain such information as he may require.

“(e) Every adjuster’s license issued hereunder shall expire on the thirtieth day of June of the year following the issuing of such license and may be renewed within sixty days before its expiration date.

“For issuing an independent adjuster’s license or a public adjuster’s license, the insurance commissioner shall collect and receive a fee of fifty pesos: Provided, That, for renewing any such license, the fee shall be twenty-five pesos.

“(f) Nothing contained in this section shall apply to:

“(1) Any duly licensed attorney-at-law who acts or aids in adjusting insurance claims as an incident to the practice of his profession and who does not advertise himself as an adjuster;

“(2) Any average adjuster or adjuster of maritime losses.

“(g) The insurance commissioner may suspend or revoke any adjuster’s license if, after giving notice and hearing to the adjuster concerned, the insurance commissioner determines that the said adjuster (1) has violated any provisions of the insurance law and of the circulars, rulings and instructions of the office of the insurance commissioner or has violated any law in the course of his dealings as an adjuster; or (2) has made a material misstatement in the application for such license; or (3) has been guilty of fraudulent or dishonest practices; or (4) has demonstrated his incompetency or untrustworthiness to act as an adjuster; or (5) has made patently unjust valuation of loss; or (6) has failed to make a report of the adjustment he proposed for not more than sixty days from the date of the filing of the claim by the insured with the insurer, unless prevented so to do by reasons beyond his control.

“(h) Every adjuster shall submit to the office of the insurance commissioner a quarterly report of all losses which are the subject of adjustment effected by him during each month in the form prescribed by the insurance commissioner. The report shall be filed within one month after the end of each quarter.”

Section 2. The Insurance Commissioner may prescribe rules and regulations and issue instructions and orders to carry out the purposes of this Act.

Section 3. The violation of any provision of this Act shall be punished by a fine of not more than five hundred pesos or by imprisonment in the discretion of the Court: Provided, That, in the case of a firm, association or corporation, the said penalty shall be imposed upon its president, manager, managing director, director or person in charge of its business responsible for the violation.

Section 4. This Act shall take effect upon its approval: Provided, That any person, firm, association or corporation which has been acting as adjuster of which has been advertising itself as an adjuster up to the date of effectivity of this Act may continue to act or advertise itself as such provided it applies for the license prescribed in this Act within the two months from such date and the application has not been disapproved.

Approved, June 16, 1956.

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