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Information Resources Division: 804-371-9141



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RICHMOND – Each year, seniors lose billions of dollars as a result of financial exploitation perpetrated by friends, family, caregivers, financial professionals or strangers. The loss to individual victims of senior financial exploitation averages tens of thousands of dollars.

On World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (June 15), the State Corporation Commission encourages seniors, caregivers, financial professionals and all Virginians to be aware of the signs of elder financial abuse and to know how to report it.

Although financial abuse can take many forms, senior citizens (and those around them) should be aware of exploitation efforts involving the sale of investments, as well as attempts to access seniors’ investment accounts. Such efforts can include online or telemarketing scams selling fraudulent investments, or someone trying to gain control over a senior citizen’s investment accounts for their own personal gain. Among the seniors most vulnerable to such financial exploitation are those who have disabilities, rely on others for help or are socially isolated.

“Seniors are increasingly being targeted by scammers,” said Doug Joyce, director of the State Corporation Commission’s Division of Securities and Retail Franchising (Division). “Social isolation, a health crisis and increased reliance on the internet for many daily activities can make seniors increasingly vulnerable.”

In some cases, scammers may target their victims using personal details gleaned from obituaries and social media posts. Some may exploit established relationships within a senior’s social and support groups to become more involved in their life.

Possible red flags of senior financial abuse include the following:

  • Surrendering passwords and control of finances to a new or overly protective friend or caregiver;
  • Suspicious signatures on checks or other documents;
  • Unusual activity in investment or bank accounts, including large, frequent or unexplained withdrawals or transfers between accounts;
  • Unusual or sudden changes to beneficiary designations or to legal or financial documents involving investments, such as power of attorney, wills, trusts, retirement accounts or insurance policies, or documents which suddenly go missing;
  • Unexplained financial activities, such as the disappearance or “gifting” of assets, valuables or securities;
  • Fear of or sudden change in feelings toward friends or family members; and
  • A lack of knowledge by a senior about their financial status or reluctance to discuss financial matters.

Joyce encourages Virginians who suspect they or a loved one are the victims of investment fraud or possible senior financial exploitation to contact the Division by telephone (in Richmond at 804-371-9051 or toll-free at 1-800-552-7945), or by email at Additional information is available on the Division’s website at

The North American Securities Administrators Association, of which the Division is a member, also has developed resources to help identify investment fraud and know how to report suspected elder financial abuse. These resources are available at or at

Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141

RICHMOND – The State Corporation Commission (SCC) is offering time for members of the public to provide comments regarding Virginia’s Commonwealth Health Reinsurance Program (CHRP).

Established for benefit year 2023 and beyond, CHRP’s purpose is to lower premium costs in the individual health insurance marketplace in Virginia. CHRP reimburses health insurance carriers for a portion of the claims of individuals with high annual medical costs and is supported mainly through federal “pass-through” funding. In order for Virginia to be eligible to receive federal pass-through funding, the state budget must include sufficient funding for CHRP.

The SCC is required by § 38.2-6602 of the Code of Virginia to establish and publish the payment parameters for the CHRP by May 1, 2023, for the 2024 benefit year. As part of this process, the SCC looks to the Virginia General Assembly regarding budgetary matters and the level of reinsurance it should seek each benefit year.

Due to uncertainty regarding the level of state funding that will be made available, and therefore, the amount of premium reduction the SCC should seek from health insurance carriers for benefit year 2024, a zero percent premium reduction from the CHRP for benefit year 2024 may be established, which would be considered a suspension of CHRP. In the event of a suspension, the conditions of the federal waiver that provides pass-through funding require the SCC to hold a 30-day public comment period prior to submitting a formal request to suspend CHRP.

Although the status of the reinsurance program for 2024 is not yet finalized, the SCC is beginning this 30-day public comment process to prepare for the possibility that the CHRP may be suspended.

Individuals wishing to comment on CHRP generally, or to otherwise comment regarding suspension of CHRP can send comments via email, no later than July 9, 2023, to

The SCC also will hold a public forum for comments on CHRP on June 20, 2023, from 10 a.m. to noon in Courtroom A of the SCC Building at 1300 East Main Street in downtown Richmond. The forum will be webcast. Anyone wishing to comment can attend in person or remotely. Those who plan to attend remotely should complete the Reinsurance Program Speaker Registration Form prior to June 16, 2023, to be contacted during the meeting to deliver comments.

For more information, visit the SCC Bureau of Insurance website at

RICHMOND – With hurricane season just around the corner, the State Corporation Commission’s (SCC) Bureau of Insurance (Bureau) reminds Virginians that the time to plan is now. Planning includes reviewing your insurance policy and making sure you have the coverage you need if a hurricane or other disaster strikes.

The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 through November 30 each year. Once a hurricane develops in the Atlantic, it may be difficult to find an insurance company willing to write hurricane-related coverage for your home, auto or business until after the storm threat passes.

“Protect yourself, not only physically, but financially,” said Virginia Insurance Commissioner Scott A. White. “Hurricanes can wreak havoc on your property. Review your insurance policies and know what is and is not covered. If you have questions, contact your insurance agency or company or the Bureau of Insurance.”

Even areas hundreds of miles from the coast can experience floods and other damage caused by hurricanes’ high winds and torrential rains. Most hurricane damage is caused by flooding, not high winds. Even minor floods can cause extensive damage to your home, vehicle, business or belongings.

The Bureau offers the following reminders as Virginians prepare for hurricane season:

  • Homeowners, renters and commercial insurance policies issued in Virginia typically do not cover damages caused by floods, surface water or storm surges. The federal government sells insurance for direct flood and flood-related damage to homeowners, renters and businesses in eligible communities through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Keep in mind that there is typically a 30-day waiting period for a new flood insurance policy to take effect. To learn more about this program, contact your insurance agent or the NFIP at 1-800-427-4661 or visit
    • Some private insurers also offer flood policies, so check with your insurance agent about the availability of a private flood insurance policy.
    • Flood coverage available through the NFIP may differ from private flood coverage, so it’s important to understand the differences. No matter which option you consider, ask whether your flood policy covers your personal property.
  • Some homeowners policies require a special deductible for wind or hurricane losses. These deductibles may be applied separately from any other deductible on the homeowners policy. Deductibles may, for example, be written as a flat amount, such as $1,000, or may be applied to the loss as a percentage of the insurance coverage limit on the dwelling. Remember that the deductible is the amount that you must pay before the insurance company pays its portion of a claim.
  • Don’t wait to prepare a home inventory of your personal property, which should include photographs, videos and serial numbers. Having a home inventory can facilitate the claims process if damage occurs. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ free home inventory app – available through the App Store and Google Play – can make creating a home inventory easy. Keep your insurance policies and home inventory together in a safe and secure place.
  • Know what to do if your property is damaged by a hurricane. Contact your insurance agent or company as soon as possible. Make any necessary emergency repairs and take reasonable steps to prevent further damage to your property. Additionally, make a list of all damage to your property and include photographs, notes and repair-related receipts.
  • If you must evacuate, know the name of your insurance company and take your homeowners, auto and other insurance policies and your home inventory with you, or make sure you can access these important documents electronically. The policies will contain your policy numbers and the phone numbers of your insurance companies in case you have questions or need to file a claim.

The Bureau of Insurance offers free consumer guides for homeowners and commercial property owners with information about what to do when a disaster strikes. These and many other consumer insurance guides are available at The Bureau’s specially trained staff can assist consumers with their insurance-related questions and concerns. To learn more, contact the Consumer Services Section of the Bureau’s Property and Casualty Division toll-free at 1-877-310-6560 or in Richmond at 804-371-9185.

For additional emergency preparedness information regarding hurricanes and other types of disasters and hazards, visit


Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141




RICHMOND – The State Corporation Commission’s (SCC) Bureau of Insurance (Bureau) is seeking public comments regarding Virginia’s proposed essential health benefits (EHB) benchmark plan application for plan year 2025. The final application is due to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) by May 3, 2023.

Legislation passed by the 2023 Virginia General Assembly directs the Bureau to select a new EHB benchmark plan for plan year 2025. The EHB benchmark plan sets the required benefits that must be provided by comprehensive fully-insured individual and small group health insurance coverage issued in Virginia. Before Virginia adopts the new EHB benchmark plan, the Bureau must release the plan for public comment and then obtain approval of the plan from CMS.

In 2022, the General Assembly directed the Bureau to study and analyze the Commonwealth’s options for a new EHB benchmark plan for potential implementation in 2025 and to report its findings. The SCC utilized federal grant money to review Virginia’s EHB benchmark plan to present potential updates, including additional health benefit options. As part of this process, a consulting actuary for the Bureau also provided cost estimates of additional health benefits recently considered by Virginia’s Health Insurance Reform Commission and compared Virginia’s EHB benchmark plan to those of several other states.

Among the potential benefits studied for inclusion in Virginia’s 2025 EHB benchmark plan were medically necessary prosthetic devices and components as well as formula and enteral nutrition products as medicine. The recently-passed 2023 legislation directs the Bureau to add these benefits to the EHB benchmark plan in addition to the current benefits. Following public comment, the proposed 2025 EHB benchmark plan application must be approved by CMS in advance. A CMS determination on Virginia’s proposed 2025 EHB benchmark plan is expected by late summer 2023.

In addition to the legislation regarding the 2025 EHB benchmark plan, the 2023 General Assembly passed legislation that would establish a formalized process for future review and updates to Virginia’s EHB benchmark plan.

Public comments on Virginia’s proposed EHB benchmark plan application for plan year 2025 must be submitted to the Bureau of Insurance at: by Wednesday, April 12. Those comments will be published on the Bureau’s website at Virginia SCC - Essential Health Benefits Benchmark Plan.


Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141

RICHMOND – Strong winds, tornadoes, hailstorms, lightning, and flash floods – these are just some of the severe weather events that can accompany the arrival of spring.

Severe weather can strike anywhere and anytime. Advance planning is the key to protecting yourself, your loved ones and your property – both physically and financially.

The State Corporation Commission’s (SCC) Bureau of Insurance (Bureau) encourages Virginians to plan now for the possibility of extreme spring weather. “Assess your risk and make sure you have the insurance coverage you need if severe weather causes damage to your home, business, vehicles or other property,” said Virginia Insurance Commissioner Scott A. White.

The Bureau encourages Virginians to consider the following:

  • Review your insurance policy and contact your insurance agent or company if you have any questions about your coverage.
  • Create a detailed inventory of your belongings including photos and receipts of your property if you have them. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) provides a free home inventory app that can help you with this process. Additionally, you can use the NAIC’s Home Inventory Checklist as a guide. Store your home inventory checklist and insurance policy information in a secure, waterproof location.
  • Most homeowners and renters insurance policies do not cover losses due to flooding. If you believe that you may need flood coverage, talk to your insurance agent about how to obtain flood insurance or visit the National Flood Insurance Program website at Keep in mind that there is typically a 30-day waiting period before a flood insurance policy takes effect.

Automobile other-than-collision insurance coverage, often called "comprehensive" insurance coverage, helps pay to repair or replace vehicles if they are stolen or damaged by such things as fire, water, wind, hail, vandalism, glass breakage, falling objects or contact with an animal.

If your home, business, vehicles, or other property are damaged due to severe weather, the Bureau recommends that Virginians keep several steps in mind:

  • Contact your insurance company or agent as soon as possible after the danger or risk has passed.
  • Take photos of your damaged property once it is safe to do so.
  • Save the receipts for the costs of any emergency repairs that are needed to prevent further damage to your property.
  • If you feel you are treated unfairly, contact the Bureau of Insurance Property & Casualty Consumer Services team at 804-371-9185 or file a complaint.

The Bureau offers free consumer guides for homeowners and commercial property owners with information about what to do when a disaster strikes. These and many other consumer insurance guides are available on the Bureau’s website at

The Bureau’s specially trained staff can assist consumers with their insurance-related questions and concerns. To learn more, contact the Consumer Services Section of the Bureau’s Property and Casualty Division toll-free at 1-877-310-6560 or in Richmond at 804-371-9185.

For additional emergency preparedness information related to various types of disasters and hazards, visit the Virginia Department of Emergency Management website at


Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141

RICHMOND – Individual retirement accounts (IRAs) are a popular way for many Americans to build their savings. They can take various forms including traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, Simplified Employee Pension IRAs, self-directed IRAs and others.

To open an account, an individual must find a bank, trust company, broker-dealer or other Internal Revenue Service (IRS)-approved company to act as the account custodian.

Like other IRAs, self-directed IRAs provide another option for those looking to invest retirement funds. Before opening a self-directed IRA, the State Corporation Commission (SCC) Division of Securities and Retail Franchising (Securities Division) encourages Virginians to consider how self-directed IRAs work and how they differ from IRAs offered by banks, registered broker-dealers, investment advisors and other IRS-approved custodians.

“With self-directed IRAs, it is up to the investor to evaluate and understand the investments in his or her account,” said Doug Joyce, director of the SCC’s Securities Division. “Custodians are only responsible for holding and administering the assets in an account and typically do not check the safety or legitimacy of an investment or accuracy of any financial information that is provided for an investment in their account. Custodians of those accounts have limited duties to investors. A self-directed IRA investor has sole responsibility for investment decisions,” he said.

Self-directed IRAs generally allow investment in a broader range of assets than is permitted by most other IRA custodians. These investments may include non-traditional assets such as real estate, precious metals, crypto assets, private placement securities and promissory notes.

Additionally, promoters of self-directed IRAs may not be licensed investment professionals and may not be subject to the same regulatory oversight and investor protection rules that govern the securities industry.

Fees for self-directed IRAs may be higher than those for other types of IRAs and may include transaction fees, account opening fees, annual account fees, administrative fees and asset-specific fees in the account. Self-directed IRAs are also subject to more complicated IRS tax rules than other types of IRAs.

“Understand the benefits and risks of any investment,” Joyce said. “Ask questions, get details in writing and make sure that the investment and the person offering it are licensed or registered, if necessary.” Joyce encourages Virginians to independently verify information such as prices and asset values in self-directed IRA account statements; avoid unsolicited investment offers and claims of “guaranteed” returns or “risk-free” investments, and consult with a licensed, unbiased investment professional or attorney before investing.

Virginians can contact the Securities Division with certain securities-related questions, including any questions about possible investment fraud, at 804-371-9051 in Richmond or toll-free at 1-800-552-7945. For more information, visit the Division’s website at or the North American Securities Administrators Association at


Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141

RICHMOND – Helping Americans understand their consumer rights and make informed choices – that’s the goal of National Consumer Protection Week. The State Corporation Commission (SCC) is pleased to join the Federal Trade Commission and other federal, state and local agencies and organizations for this annual awareness campaign, which runs from March 5-11, 2023.

Whether you are shopping for a mortgage or automobile loan, have questions about your insurance policies or want to understand charges on your utility bill, the SCC may be able to help. SCC staff may provide information as well as assist with questions and concerns involving entities that the SCC regulates including insurance companies and agents, state-chartered financial institutions, investment firms and their representatives, retail franchises, and investor-owned utilities providing electric, natural gas, water, sewer and landline telecommunications service.

The SCC provides outreach and consumer guides in addition to other materials on topics such as understanding mortgage loans, investing wisely, saving energy, explaining various types of insurance, and more.

When it comes to regulated businesses and services, the SCC encourages Virginians to shop around and understand their options; thoroughly evaluate any offer; keep written records of all transactions; find products and services that suit their particular needs; review statements and bills regularly; learn to spot scams, and verify that an individual or company is properly licensed or registered.

Consumers should attempt to resolve issues directly with a regulated individual or company first. If the issue is not resolved to the consumer’s satisfaction, however, they can contact the SCC through its toll-free number at 1-800-552-7945 or call the appropriate SCC division in Richmond using the numbers below:

  • Bureau of Insurance – 804-371-9741
  • Bureau of Financial Institutions – 804-371-9657
  • Division of Securities and Retail Franchising – 804-371-9051
  • Division of Public Utility Regulation – 804-371-9611
  • Office of the Clerk – 804-371-9733
  • Division of Information Resources – 804-371-9141

Information about the complaint process, along with related forms, are available from the Consumers section of the SCC website at

If the SCC does not have regulatory authority over a particular company, individual, product or transaction, its staff will assist consumers whenever possible by providing a referral to any appropriate local, state or federal authority for assistance. These authorities may include the Office of the Attorney General, law enforcement agencies, or the Federal Trade Commission (which consumers can also contact directly through its toll-free helpline at 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357)).

To learn more about National Consumer Protection Week, visit


Contact: Jordan Bondurant, 804-371-9141

RICHMOND – The State Corporation Commission (SCC) reminds Virginia consumers that they can sign up for health insurance coverage or make changes to an existing plan now through This open enrollment period ends January 15, 2023.

Coverage will start February 1, 2023 for all enrollments occurring through January 15 at Open enrollment – which usually runs from November through January – is the only time consumers can enroll in coverage without a qualifying life event that makes them eligible for a special enrollment period.

For 2023, the federal government has continued enhanced premium credits to help cover premium costs for health insurance purchased through and more Virginians are now eligible for financial assistance. The federal government also recently finalized a new rule which makes this financial assistance available to family members of certain workers whose employer-provided insurance may not be affordable for spouses and dependents.

Health insurance plans sold through the federal marketplace, known as qualified health plans, must provide coverage for 10 essential health benefits which include:

  • Ambulatory care
  • Emergency services
  • Hospitalization
  • Pregnancy, maternity and newborn care
  • Mental health, behavioral health, and substance use disorder services
  • Prescription drugs
  • Rehabilitative and habilitative services and devices
  • Laboratory services
  • Preventive and wellness services and chronic disease management
  • Pediatric services, including oral and vision care

Qualified health plans generally prohibit denial of coverage for pre-existing conditions, require zero copays on a range of preventive care, and have no dollar limits on covered benefits.

Through, Virginia residents may access financial assistance to lower costs for health insurance for plan year 2023. There are now at least two health carriers participating in the marketplace in every county and region across the Commonwealth.

To begin an application or to make changes to existing coverage, consumers can visit or call the Marketplace Call Center at 1-800-318-2596, TTY: 1-855-889-4325. For free in-person or online help, or help over the phone, Virginia residents have several options.

Virginia is on track to complete the transition to a Virginia-based health insurance marketplace by fall of 2023. To learn more about the Virginia Exchange or to obtain additional contact information, visit the SCC Exchange website at HBE Consumer Contact.

Contact: Katha Treanor, 804-371-9141
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