The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) is an autonomous, statutory agency tasked with regulating and promoting the insurance and re-insurance industries in India.It was constituted by the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority Act, 1999,an act of Parliament passed by the government of India.The agency’s headquarters are in Hyderabad, Telangana, where it moved from Delhi in 2001. The IRDAI attempted to raise the foreign direct investment limit in the insurance sector to 49 percent from its current 26 percent. The FDI limit in the sector was raised to 49 percent in June 2016.
The insurance policy is a contract between the insurer and the insured, known as the policyholder, which determines the claims which the insurer is legally required to pay. In exchange for an initial payment, known as the premium, the insurer promises to pay for loss caused by perils covered under the policy language.
Insurance contracts are designed to meet specific needs and thus have many features not found in many other types of contracts. Since insurance policies are standard forms, they feature boilerplate language which is similar across a wide variety of different types of insurance policies.
The insurance policy is generally an integrated contract, meaning that it includes all forms associated with the agreement between the insured and insurer. In some cases, however, supplementary writings such as letters sent after the final agreement can make the insurance policy a non-integrated contract. One insurance textbook states that generally “courts consider all prior negotiations or agreements … every contractual term in the policy at the time of delivery, as well as those written afterwards as policy riders and endorsements … with both parties’ consent, are part of written policy”. The textbook also states that the policy must refer to all papers which are part of the policy.Oral agreements are subject to the parol evidence rule, and may not be considered part of the policy if the contract appears to be whole. Advertising materials and circulars are typically not part of a policy. Oral contracts pending the issuance of a written policy can occur.
Functions Of IRDA
- Issuing, renewing, modifying, withdrawing, suspending or cancelling registrations
- Protecting policyholder interests
- Specifying qualifications, the code of conduct and training for intermediaries and agents
- Specifying the code of conduct for surveyors and loss assessors
- Promoting efficiency
- Promoting and regulating professional organisations connected with the insurance and re-insurance industry
- Levying fees and other charges
- Inspecting and investigating insurers, intermediaries and other relevant organisations
- Specifying how books should be kept
- Regulating company investment of funds
- Regulating a margin of solvency
- Adjudicating disputes between insurers and intermediaries or insurance intermediaries
- Supervising the Tariff Advisory Committee
- Specifying the percentage of premium income to finance schemes for promoting and regulating professional organisations
- Specifying the percentage of life- and general-insurance business undertaken in the rural or social sector.