Unfair Competition and Practices

SECTION 27-29-8

§ 27-29-8. Procedure as to unfair methods of competition and unfair or deceptive acts or practices which are not defined.

(a) Whenever the insurance commissioner shall have reason to believe that any person engaged in the business of insurance is engaging in this state in any method of competition or in any act or practice in the conduct of business which is not defined in § 27-29-4, that the method of competition is unfair or that the act or practice is unfair or deceptive and that a proceeding by the commissioner in respect to it would be to the interest of the public, the commissioner may issue and serve upon the person a statement of the charge in that respect and a notice of a hearing on the charge to be held at a time and place fixed in the notice. The hearing shall be conducted in the same manner as the hearings provided for in § 27-29-5. The insurance commissioner shall after the hearings make a report in writing in which the commissioner shall state his or her findings as to the facts, and the commissioner shall serve a copy of it upon the person.

(b) If the report charges a violation of this chapter and if the method of competition, act, or practice has not been discontinued, the insurance commissioner may, through the attorney general of this state, at any time after ten (10) days after the service of the report, cause a petition to be filed in the superior court of this state for the counties of Providence and Bristol to enjoin and restrain the person from engaging in that method, act, or practice. The court shall have jurisdiction of the proceeding and shall have the power to make and enter appropriate orders in connection with the proceedings and to issue any of the writs ancillary to its jurisdiction or necessary in its judgment to prevent injury to the public pendente lite.

(c) A transcript of the proceedings before the insurance commissioner, including all evidence taken and the report and findings, shall be filed with the petition. If either party shall apply to the court for leave to adduce additional evidence and shall show to the satisfaction of the court that the additional evidence is material and there were reasonable grounds for the failure to adduce the evidence in the proceedings before the insurance commissioner, the court may order the additional evidence to be taken before the insurance commissioner and to be adduced upon the hearing in a manner and upon those terms and conditions the court may deem proper. The insurance commissioner may modify his or her findings of fact or make new findings by reason of the additional evidence taken, and the commissioner shall file the modified or new findings with the return of the additional evidence.

(d) If the court finds that the method of competition complained of is unfair or that the act or practice complained of is unfair or deceptive, that the proceeding by the insurance commissioner with respect to it is to the interest of the public, and that the findings of the insurance commissioner are supported by the weight of the evidence, it shall issue its order enjoining and restraining the continuance of the method of competition, act, or practice.

History of Section.
(P.L. 1958, ch. 53, § 8.)