CONSUMER GUARANTY CONTRACTS
415-C:7 Prohibited Acts and Terms.
I. No obligor, its designee, or any other representative of an obligor, including a seller or administrator, shall in connection with the sale, or offer to sell, or any advertisement or in connection with any benefits, advantages, conditions, terms, or services available under a consumer guaranty contract:
(a) Make, publish, print, distribute, issue, circulate, advertise, or place before the public, any statement or representation that is false or misleading;
(b) Mislead by permitting or causing the omission of a material statement that under the circumstances should have been made in order to make the statements that were made not misleading.
(c) Require the purchase of a consumer guaranty contract or represent that the purchase is mandatory.
(d) Create or maintain a fraud.
(e) Use in its name the words insurance, casualty, guaranty, surety, mutual, or any other words descriptive of the insurance, casualty, guaranty or surety business; or a name deceptively similar to the name or description of any insurance or surety corporation, or any other obligor. This section shall not apply to a company that was using any of the prohibited language in its name prior to the effective date of this chapter. However, a company using the prohibited language in its name shall conspicuously disclose in its consumer guaranty contracts a statement substantially as follows: "This agreement is not an insurance contract."
(f) Fail to act promptly upon communications with respect to claims arising under a consumer guaranty contract.
(g) Fail to effectuate fair and equitable settlements or compromises of claims in which liability has become reasonably clear.
(h) Unfairly discriminate based solely on age, place or area of residence, race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, marital or civil union status, lawful occupation including military service, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, or blindness or other disability.
II. An obligor shall not make, permit, or cause any practice that:
(a) Fails to perform the services promised under the contract in a timely, competent, or workmanlike manner; or
(b) Has the effect of creating or maintaining a fraud.
III. No consumer guaranty contract issued, sold, or covering property located in this state shall provide that:
(a) The consumer is not a party to the contract;
(b) The obligor has no liability to the consumer;
(c) The consumer does not have the right to bring an action to enforce the terms of the contract or otherwise challenge the denial of a claim which the consumer believes is wrongful. Consumer guaranty contracts may include provisions requiring the parties to submit to alternative dispute resolution, including a provision requiring binding arbitration that would expressly limit the right of the consumer to bring an action in a court of law, if such provision complies with and does not impede the rights of the consumer as provided under RSA 542. All arbitration provisions shall state that they are subject to RSA 542; or
(d) Any civil action or alternative dispute resolution procedure brought in connection with the consumer guaranty contract shall be brought in the courts of a jurisdiction other than New Hampshire.
IV. Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to impair or in any way affect any rule or law applicable to or governing consumer guaranty contracts.
Source. 2004, 224:1. 2008, 255:3. 2015, 207:3, eff. Sept. 4, 2015. 2019, 332:17, eff. Oct. 15, 2019.