JULY 24, 2000
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: CHRISTOPHER GOETCHEUS
(617) 521-7333


DIVISION OF INSURANCE UNVEILS NEW USER-FRIENDLY WEBSITE

(BOSTON, MA) The Massachusetts Division of Insurance today unveiled its new web site offering both insurance consumers and those who work in the industry greater ease of navigation for accessing information.

"The previous web site always had a tremendous amount of valuable information for consumers, but using it was not as easy as it could have been," said Commissioner Linda Ruthardt. "The new site has even more information and users are now steered toward what they want, in most instances, with just a few clicks of the mouse."

In planning the re-design of the agency website, representatives from each department within the Division surveyed the web sites of insurance regulators in many other states with an eye towards clarity, content and simplicity of use. The resulting homepage groups areas of interest and allows users to access more specific options with one click of the mouse. Links to areas of interest that are most in demand are immediately accessible from the homepage. Users can now download complaint forms and licensing applications and a wide variety of guides and brochures with less navigation or obtain the information they want with the help of the site's search engine.

Commissioner Ruthardt cited the leadership role of the Division's Information Systems staff. "In a time when technology specialists are in great demand, this agency is truly fortunate to have the expertise and dedication of Jennie Coax and Alice Garner." The Division's Producer Licensing and Consumer Service staffs receive the highest telephone call volumes at the agency, approximately 72-thousand and 58-thousand phone calls respectively during 1999. In previewing the Division's web site, Jennifer Davis Carey, Director of the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation noted, "I'm very pleased that my agencies are using the available technology to give consumers more options and quicker access to government services."

Also previewing the web site was Francis A. Mancini, Executive Vice President with the Massachusetts Association of Insurance Agents (MAIA). "For agents and brokers, the new site provides a wealth of information and makes it easier and faster to obtain specific licensing information. MAIA would like to compliment the Division on its new and improved web site."

Information and features at www.mass.gov/doi include:
  • A search engine accessible at the bottom of each page.
  • A site map allowing access to a text-only version of the website.
  • A Consumers section featuring a downloadable complaint form, consumer guides and brochures and a wide variety of insurance information including: voluntary group and "safe driver" discounts for personal automobile insurance, homeowners insurance discounts, available health insurance products for individuals and employer groups, as well as Medicare, long-term care and disability income products.
  • A Bulletins section featuring all Division bulletins issued since 1994.
  • A Legal/Hearings section featuring a link to the Massachusetts General Laws, Division of Insurance promulgated regulations, adjudicative decisions, hearing notices and filings with the Supreme Judicial Court.
  • An Enforcement section featuring quarterly updates of enforcement actions by the Division.
  • A Companies section featuring addresses of all licensed domestic & foreign insurers, policy form and rate filing requirements and Division of Insurance analyst contacts.
  • A Producers section featuring downloadable applications for all agent/broker licenses, licensing instructions, lists of approved pre-licensing and continuing education providers and instructions for obtaining commonly requested agent/broker lists.
www.mass.gov/doi will be updated continuously and new features will be added as warranted.