The Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriters Society (CPCU Society) Board of Governors voted unanimously to publicly denounce all practices or systems that violate its code of ethics.
In a policy statement issued Tuesday in Los Angeles, the Society’s Board of Governors urged “all insurance practitioners to abide by the same high ethical standards it demands of its members. An efficient, ethical and trustworthy property and casualty insurance industry is essential to the world economy and to civilization. The CPCU Society Board of Governors pledges to do what is necessary to build public confidence in the insurance industry and in the overwhelming majority of its professionals.”
The CPCU Society Ethics Code stated that its members “shall not engage in practices which tend to discredit the Society or the business of insurance and risk management.”
The Ethics Code also stated specifically that the violation of any law or regulation duly enacted by any governmental body whose authority has been established by law is unethical.
In addition, willfully misrepresenting or concealing a material fact in insurance and risk management business dealings also violates the Society’s Ethics Code.
Finally, breaching the confidential relationship that a Society member has with a client or principal is a breach of the Society’s Ethics Code.
“The Society’s ethics code prohibits its almost 28,000 members from engaging in price fixing, bid-rigging, or any practice that violates the law or a regulation, including some practices alleged by New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer,” said Donald Hurzeler, newly installed Society president, at its 60th Annual Meeting and Seminars underway in Los Angeles.
“Any CPCU Society member found to discredit the Society or the business of insurance and risk management or to willfully misrepresent or conceal a material fact in insurance and risk management dealings in violation of a duty or obligation will be held accountable to the Society,” added James Marks, Society Executive vice president.
The CPCU Society Board of Governors also took additional action to help guide industry professionals in the future.
The Society Board of Governors said it is proud that all Society members commit voluntarily to abide by the highest ethical standards. Society members also are educated, experienced and diverse, representing every major discipline practiced in the industry today, placing it in a unique position in the industry. As such, the Society Board of Governors agreed unanimously to:
1. Understand all practices and actions alleged to be illegal by New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer.
2. Transform this information into knowledge so that CPCU Society members and others may be guided as to how to avoid practices that violate the CPCU Society’s Ethics Code.
3. Provide a forum for dialogue that builds public confidence in the insurance mechanism and the insurance industry.
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