The state of Nevada’s failure to challenge a recent decision by a federal appellate court deeming that state’s “countersignature laws” unconstitutional officially marks the end of countersignature requirements for brokers placing business in the United States. Earlier this year, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit struck down Nevada’s countersignature laws as unconstitutional—i.e., laws that bar out-of-state insurance brokers from conducting business without the involvement of a resident agent (and award resident agents a percentage of the out-of-state broker’s commission, even if no work was performed by them). Nevada, which had been the only state in which countersignature laws still existed, had until July 10th to file a petition to the United States Supreme Court challenging the Ninth Circuit’s decision. The deadline passed, however, without Nevada filing such a petition, meaning that countersignature laws in all 50 states have now been eradicated.
The challenge to Nevada’s countersignature requirement was led by The Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers, an industry group that represents many commercial brokers and agents in the United States. The Council challenged the constitutionality of virtually every state’s countersignature laws over the past six years.