Corporate or Partnership General Insurance Licence

Corporate or partnership general insurance licence qualifications and application information for first-time or returning insurance licence applicants in BC.

Previously, entities who were licensed with another financial regulator (i.e. mutual fund dealers, securities dealers, and mortgage brokers) were not granted insurance licences in BC as the Insurance Council had determined that this could be problematic in the event of an investigation or inspection and it had the potential to cause confusion for clients with regard to their rights and protections.

The Insurance Council reviewed this policy at its July 2018 meeting and, in light of the fact that other Canadian jurisdictions allow joint licensing and that the Insurance Council Rules address concerns related to inspections, investigations, and public confusion, the Insurance Council determined that effective immediately, it will consider applications from entities registered with another financial regulator. Before applying for a licence, the Insurance Council recommends that you consult with your other regulator(s) first, as it may have its own rules and restrictions in place.
  • Requirement to represent an insurance company: An agency must obtain and maintain the ability to represent at least one insurance company authorized to conduct business in the province.
  • Requirement to have a nominee: An agency must nominate a level 3 agent to act as a nominee who will take on the rights and privileges of the agency licence, and is responsible and accountable to the Insurance Council for all insurance activities undertaken by the agency and its employees:
                         
    • A nominee must be an officer, director, or partner of the agency, or a senior manager in the BC branch or office.
    • An intended nominee must hold a level 3 general insurance agent licence in British Columbia; qualification requirements for a level 3 general insurance agent licence can be found here.
    • If the agency or firm is changing the nominee, please submit an Agency Nominee Amendment Application Form. The form is available here, under Agency Nominee Change.
    • Effective August 1, 2023, new nominees must be approved by the Insurance Council and have taken the prerequisite course: Nominee Responsibilities and Best Practice. The course is administered by the Insurance Council and is available in two streams:
      • Nominee Responsibilities and Best Practice Course for Life and/or Accident & Sickness Nominees and Applicants
      • Nominee Responsibilities and Best Practice Course for General Insurance and Adjuster Nominees and Applicants.
Current nominees do not need to take the nominee course unless they are submitting a request to be appointed as a nominee for another agency or firm.
More on how to register for the course here.
  • ‚ÄčRequirement for office supervision: Each agency location must come under the direct supervision of a level 3 agent. All supervising level 3 agents are responsible and accountable for overseeing the work of those in their area of responsibility and for establishing and maintaining office procedures that support the competent and ethical conduct of the business of insurance. The agency’s nominee is responsible for determining what constitutes adequate supervision at each agency location, taking into account:
    • The number of agents working in the office.
    • The levels of licence and experience of the agents.
    • The extent of written procedures: Council Rules and Council’s Code of Conduct.
  • Requirement for business name registration: The Insurance Council requires all names, including operational names or "doing business as" names (i.e. trade names), to be registered with the BC Corporate Registry, and be approved by the Insurance Council. The business name must be a name that will not likely be confused with the name of an insurer, another licensed insurance agency or an adjusting firm.

    Furthermore, an insurance applicant or licensee is required by the Financial Institutions Act (the “Act”) to have a name that is neither misleading, nor likely to cause confusion for the public. Section 12.1 of the Act also requires that anytime the word “insurance” or “assurance” or “insurer” is used, the name cannot be used in a manner that would cause a member of the public to believe the entity is an insurance company. As this section falls under the jurisdiction of the BC Financial Services Authority, further information regarding name requests can be found on their website here
  • Complete the application by following the instructions in the application package. 
  • Answer all questions and attach all required documents, including the application fee, before submitting your application, as incomplete applications may take longer to process.
  • If your application has been pending for more than our displayed processing times, please feel free to contact our Licensing Team.
Apply Online (See Instructions)

View and download the Corporate or Partnership General Insurance Agency Licence Application
View and download the Directors, Officers, Partners, and Controlling Shareholders Exhibit Only Form
View the Corporate or Partnership General Insurance Agency Licence Fee Schedule