N.H. Clarifies Handling of Risks without Social Security Numbers

May 21, 2007

Personal auto insurance carriers in New Hampshire can’t refuse to quote a policy if the insured refuses to provide a Social Security Number for use in obtaining a credit score, according to Insurance Commisisoner Roger Sevigny has informed

In a May 16 bulletin, Sevigny reminded insurers that failure to provide a SSN is not a valid reason, under statute or regulation, to refuse to write or renew a personal automobile insurance policy.

“Many, if not most, personal automobile carriers in New Hampshire employ a credit scoring model in their rating and/or underwriting of personal automobile insurance. In order to run the model, it is the usual practice to ask the applicant to supply their SSN for the purpose of procuring the credit score,” noted Sevigny in a May 16 bulletin.

In situations where an applicant for personal automobile insurance chooses not to provide an SSN, some insurers may decide not to run credit in these cases, while others may decide to request a credit score without the SSN.

Whatever they do, the insurers can’t refuse to quote the poilcy, the bulletin makes clear.

In the bulletin, Sevigny noted that in such cases where as a result of having no SSN, there is no credit score available to the insurer, the carrier still must offer a quote and should score the applicant as if they received “no hit” under its approved insurance credit scoring system.

Source: New Hampshire Insurance Department

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