Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Job openings

We have a couple of job openings:

We're looking for an administrative assistant 4 for a limited-duration position funded by federal grant dollars related to health care reform. This person will perform "a wide range of complex administrative duties related to planning and implementation of organizational change, grant management and program support functions." The job duties include compiling statistical information and preparing written reports for executive managers and the grant funding agency. The position is funded by federal grants through November 2011.

Here's the link to the job posting, but if you want to apply, please do it quickly. Applications are due by 4:59 p.m. this Friday.

We're also looking for a financial examiner 2 to work in our Seattle office. This person will plan and conduct financial examinations of insurance companies and other regulated entities. From the job listing:
This position works with Financial Analysts (certified public accountants, certified financial examiners, and accredited financial examiners), attorneys, and other regulators on a state, national, and international level. This position examines, audits, and verifies specific groups of insurance companies, including bonds and stocks, mortgage loans, real estate, policy loans, premium notes, collateral loans, policy reserves, and capital stock.
For qualifications, pay, and application information, please see this job posting. The deadline for applications is 5 p.m. on Dec. 3.

We're a small state agency -- we have a total of about 200 workers between our Tumwater, Olympia, Seattle and Spokane offices -- that regulates the insurance industry in Washington state. We have a pretty broad consumer-protection mission. We:
  • monitor insurers' finances to make sure they can make good on their promises to policyholders.
  • license tens of thousands of agents and brokers, and investigates complaints about them.
  • scrutinize rate hike requests and makes sure that policies comply with the law.
  • go after scams, both from unlicensed insurance companies and by people trying to defraud insurers.
And our consumer advocates and a small army of volunteers field thousands of calls and e-mails from consumers needing help with insurance claims or struggling to find affordable health coverage.

How Washingtonians can file an insurance complaint online

We've launched a new "online consumer complaint center" this week, and we think we're the first state insurance department in the country to offer this kind of service.

The system lets Washington state consumers file complaints against insurers using a new interactive and password-protected web tool.

The idea is to make it more convenient and efficient for consumers to file a complaint with our office. We help with thousands of complaints, but until now, the process has relied on people mailing documents back and forth. We think this will be faster and easier.

What sorts of complaints? They often involve what insurers are covering -- or not covering . We often get calls from drivers whose cars are totalled, and who are unhappy about the payment offered for their vehicle. We try to help with complaints about delayed payments, policies being canceled, getting companies to reopen a claim or negotiate on payment, etc.

At our site, Washington state residents can file a secure complaint online, track its status 24/7, upload documents/photos/etc. related to the case, add comments, and view, print and save information about the case.

Not a Washington state resident? Here's a map with contact info for your own state's insurance department.

Request for proposals re: insurance rate review

We're looking for proposals from firms interesting in participating in a project to improve our review of health insurance rates and to increase public transparency for how health insurance premiums are determined.

Interested in bidding? The full request for proposals document is here.

The estimated time period for the contract is Feb. 16, 2011 to Sept. 30, 2011. We reserve the right to extend it for up to three one-year periods; see the RFP for details. It includs the scope of work, evaluation procedures, minimum qualifications, etc.

All proposals are due no later than 5 p.m. PST on Dec. 27, 2010.

For additional details, see also our general RFP page, and see this news release, which contains more information about the federal grant that's helping pay for the project.