General Information:

  1. Washington does not maintain a list of eligible surplus lines insurers.
  2. Washington does have a Surplus Lines Association (see Other Comments section #3).
  3. Washington does not have an Export List.
  4. Washington does not have an industrial insured but does recognize the NRRA exempt commercial purchaser exemption (RCW 48.15.010).
  5. Surplus lines tax: 2%, payable by surplus lines broker, plus 0.10% stamping fee.
  6. Washington has not affiliated with any existing compact (HB 1694). Washington has adopted enabling legislation, but has not entered into any tax sharing arrangement with other states. If Washington State is the home state of the insured, the tax is computed on the entire premium, without regard to whether the policy covers risks or exposures that are located in other states. The commissioner will issue additional guidance if and when Washington enters into a multi-state compact.
  7. Washington does not permit Direct/Independent procurement. All surplus line insurance must be procured by a licensed surplus lines broker if Washington is the home state of the Insured.

Eligibility and Filing Requirements (All Insurers):

Washington will not be imposing fees for eligibility. Insurers should submit annual and quarterly filings to the stamping office, the Surplus Line Association of Washington. Contact information and service of process should be sent to Washington DOI as well as the stamping office.

Eligibility and Filing Requirements (Alien Insurers Only):

Alien insurers must be on the Quarterly Listing of Alien Insurers maintained by NAIC. RCW 48.15.090(1)(b).

If alien is not on NAIC List, broker must obtain a waiver of the solvency requirements from the Commissioner as permitted by WAC 284-15-050.

Eligibility and Filing Requirements (Foreign Insurers Only):

Surplus lines brokers may not place coverage with a nonadmitted insurer unless, at the time of placement, the nonadmitted insurer:

  • Is authorized to write such insurance in its domiciliary jurisdiction; and
  • Possesses capital and surplus, or its equivalent under the laws of its domiciliary jurisdiction, that equals the greater of the minimum capital and surplus requirements under the laws of Washington or $15 million. RCW 48.15.090(1)(a)(i).

The commissioner may waive the minimum capital and surplus requirement for a nonadmitted insurer if he makes an affirmative finding of acceptability after considering: quality of management, capital and surplus of a parent company, company underwriting profit and investment trends, market availability, and company record and reputation within the industry. RCW 48.15.090(1)(a)(ii). The commissioner may not make a finding of acceptability if the insurer’s capital and surplus is under $4.5 million. RCW 48.15.090(1)(a)(ii).

Types of Insurance Exempted from Surplus Lines Regulation:

  1. Ocean marine and foreign trade insurances.
  2. Insurance on subjects located, resident, or to be performed wholly outside of Washington or on vehicles or aircraft owned and principally garaged outside of Washington.
  3. Insurance on operations of railroads engaged in transportation in interstate commerce and their property used in such operations.
  4. Insurance of aircraft owned or operated by manufacturers of aircraft, or aircraft operated in scheduled interstate flight, or cargo of the aircraft, or against liability, other than workers’ compensation and employer’s liability, arising out of the ownership, maintenance, or use of the aircraft.

Other Comments or Requirements:

  1. Policy filings and surplus lines broker certificates must be filed with the Surplus Line Association within 60 days of procurement.
  2. Contact information for the Surplus Line Association of Washington is as follows:
    Robert R. Hope, Executive Director
    Surplus Line Association of Washington
    600 University Street, Suite 1710
    Seattle, Washington 98101-1192
    Tel.: (206) 224-4230
    Cell: (206) 818-3437
    Email: bob@surpluslines.org
  3. Non-resident surplus line broker license may be issued: 1) if the laws of the state, province or domicile of the non-resident extend a similar privilege to residents of Washington; and 2) the non-resident must meet the same qualifications, other than residency, as any other person seeking to be licensed as a surplus line broker under RCW 48.15.A non-resident surplus lines broker has all the same responsibilities as any other surplus lines broker and is subject to the commissioner’s supervision and rules adopted under RCW 48.15.
  4. Every insurance contract, including those evidenced by a binder, procured and delivered as a surplus lines coverage must have a conspicuous statement stamped upon its face, which must be initialed by or bear the name of the surplus lines broker who procured it, as follows:“This contract is registered and delivered as a surplus line coverage under the insurance code of the state of Washington, Title 48RCW. It is not protected by any Washington state guaranty association law.”
  5. Surplus lines brokers are no longer required to submit full copies of the policies when filing but are required to submit the following documents with a certification form to Surplus Lines Association of WA:•  Policy declarations, certificate or cover note declarations
    •  Supplemental declarations
    •  Schedule of forms and endorsements
    •  Copies of service of suit endorsement.If policy documents are not available within 60 days, broker should complete the certification form and file these policy documents upon receipt.