Section 27-12-21

Proceedings on unfair competition, etc., not defined under chapter - Generally.

(a) Whenever the commissioner has reason to believe that any person engaged in the business of insurance is engaging in this state in any method of competition, or in any act or practice in the conduct of such business which is not defined in this trade practices law, that such method of competition is unfair or that such act or practice is unfair or deceptive and that a proceeding by him in respect thereto would be to the interest of the public, he may issue and serve such person a statement of the charges in that respect and a notice of a hearing thereon to be held at a time and place fixed in the notice, which shall not be less than 10 days after the date of the service thereof. Each such hearing shall be conducted in the same manner as the hearings provided for in Section 27-12-18. The commissioner shall, after such hearing, make a report in writing in which he shall state his findings as to the facts, and he shall serve a copy thereof upon such person.

(b) If such report charges a violation of this trade practices law and if such method of competition, act, or practice has not been discontinued, the commissioner may, through the Attorney General of this state, at any time after 30 days after the service of such report, cause a petition to be filed in the circuit court of this state, within the circuit wherein the person resides or has his principal place of business, to enjoin and restrain such person from engaging in such method, act, or practice. The court shall have jurisdiction of the proceeding and shall have power to make and enter appropriate orders in connection therewith and to issue such writs as are ancillary to its jurisdiction or are necessary in its judgment to prevent injury to the public pendente lite.

(c) A transcript of the proceedings before the commissioner, including all evidence taken, and the report and findings shall be filed with such petition. If either party applies to the court for leave to adduce additional evidence and shows, to the satisfaction of the court, that such additional evidence is material and there were reasonable grounds for the failure to adduce such evidence in the proceeding before the commissioner, the court may order such additional evidence to be taken before the commissioner and to be adduced upon the hearing in such manner and upon such terms and conditions as to the court may seem proper. The commissioner may modify his findings of fact or make new findings by reason of the additional evidence so taken, and he shall file such modified or new findings with the return of such additional evidence.

(d) If the court finds that the method of competition complained of is unfair or that the act or practice complained of is unfair or deceptive, that the proceeding by the commissioner with respect thereto is to the interest of the public and that the findings of the commissioner are supported by the weight of the evidence, it shall issue its order enjoining and restraining the continuance of such method of competition, act, or practice.

(Acts 1957, No. 608, p. 865, §9; Acts 1971, No. 407, p. 707, §247.)