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Medical information bureau.

The Medical Information Bureau (MIB) is a nonprofit trade association of over 700 life insurance companies that was first organized in 1902 to conduct a confidential interchange of underwriting information among its members as an alert against fraud. This interchange enables MIB member companies to protect the interests of both insurance consumers and life and health insurance providers. MIB's basic purpose is to detect and deter fraud and misrepresentation in connection with the underwriting of life and health insurance and claims.

Upon receipt of an application accompanied by a suitable authorization, member companies conduct a search of MIB records as part of their usual underwriting procedure. Members are also required to report relevant results of their underwriting evaluation to the MIB; that is, of conditions that are significant to health or longevity. Both favorable and unfavorable medical information is reported. Certain nonmedical information of a very restricted nature regarding insurability is also reported (e.g., confirmed adverse driving record, hazardous sports activity and aviation activity). In order to help preserve confidentiality the information is reported and maintained in code symbols. Members may not report codes based on claim information.

MIB information is used only to alert member companies to the possible need for further information. It may not be used as a basis for establishing eligibility for insurance. An MIB report does not indicate either the underwriting action of the reporting company or how much coverage was applied for.

Only member companies have access to MIB information and then only after receiving written authorization from the proposed insured in the course of the application process. The proposed insured's spouse cannot give this authorization. MIB information is not released to nonmember companies, credit or consumer reporting agencies, or governmental agencies, except pursuant to court order or authorization from the consumer.

The consumer who applies for life, health or disability insurance receives a brief written notice which describes MIB and its function. In addition, this notice tells how the consumer can access and correct his MIB record when needed. To obtain a copy of their MIB record, if one exists, or to seek correction of the MIB record, consumers can contact the MIB toll-free at 866-692-6901. Their web site is located at www.mib.com.

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Title Annotation:Terms & Concepts
Publication:Field Guide to Estate, Employee, & Business Planning
Date:Jan 1, 2010
Words:373
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