MIB Group, Inc. is a member-owned corporation that has operated on a not-for-profit basis in the United States and Canada since 1902. MIB's Underwriting Services are used exclusively by MIB's member life and health insurance companies to assess an individual’s risk and eligibility during the underwriting of life, health, disability income, critical illness, and long-term care insurance policies. These services "alert" underwriters to errors, omissions or misrepresentations made on insurance applications. By mitigating the risk of applicant errors, omissions and misrepresentations, MIB may help lower the cost of life and health insurance for consumers.
MIB's subsidiaries offer other business services to members and customers in addition to MIB's Underwriting Services.
A word about terminology: an applicant is the person who applies for insurance. The proposed insured is the person whose life will be insured and is thereby "covered" by that life insurance policy. In most cases, the person applying for the insurance policy (the applicant) is the same person who would be insured under the policy (proposed insured). Therefore, we use "applicant" to mean a person applying for life insurance that will cover himself or herself.
MIB's business model for Underwriting Services is sometimes described as an "information exchange" because our members contribute underwriting information about insurance applicants to the MIB database that may be useful to other members who later search the database with the authorization of the insurance applicant. The applicant information in MIB’s database is maintained and safeguarded in a coded format that protects the privacy of the individual and is accessible only to authorized personnel of the member company to which an individual has applied for insurance and has authorized the use of MIB as an information source.
MIB's coded reports represent different medical conditions and other conditions (typically hazardous hobbies and adverse driving records) affecting the insurability of the applicant to whom they relate. These reports alert insurance underwriters to possible errors, omissions and misrepresentations that were made in the application process. If the coded reports are inconsistent with the information provided by the applicant, underwriters are required to conduct a further investigation to obtain more information about the reported medical histories or conditions prior to making an adverse underwriting decision.
In addition to MIB's use of highly confidential and proprietary codes to protect the privacy of individuals, MIB also implements and enforces robust security standards and policies that are designed to protect the security and confidentiality of any individually identifiable information in MIB's database.
By alerting its member companies to errors, omissions, misrepresentations or potential fraud in the application process, MIB helps its members place insurance applicants in the appropriate risk groups, which may keep insurance premiums low for insurance-buying consumers. For instance, when individuals withhold or omit information that would have caused the insurer to decline the policy or to charge an extra premium to account for the additional risk, all insureds of that company are indirectly affected. In order to compensate for poorer than expected mortality experience, the insurer may need to raise rates, reduce dividends or interest credited to policies, or make other adjustments.
MIB helps insurers remain financially strong so they can meet their unique guarantees and assurances to policyholders. MIB's Underwriting Services save its member companies over $1 billion (estimated) annually by allowing them to assess and select risk accurately and appropriately.
In short, MIB ensures that companies can offer – and consumers can purchase – affordable life and health insurance protection.
MIB and its member companies are fully committed to ensuring that MIB Consumer Files contain only accurate, timely, verified and complete information. MIB has long provided consumers with the right to obtain their MIB Consumer File (if one exists) in order to ensure its accuracy and completeness. In fact, out of all the free disclosures that we provide to consumers, we find that only 1-2% of these Consumer Files have to be amended due to inaccurate or incomplete information. Based on the very low incidence of corrections that are made to MIB Consumer Files, we are confident that MIB’s files are highly accurate and reflect the uncompromising efforts of MIB and its member companies to report information that is accurate, timely, verified and complete, as required by MIB’s General Rules, Internal Procedural Rules and federal regulations (the Fair Credit Reporting Act).
MIB also offers an effective reinvestigation process in accordance with the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act. If you have received a copy of your MIB Consumer File and you feel that the information in your MIB Consumer File is inaccurate or incomplete, then you may request a "reinvestigation." To learn more about how to request a reinvestigation, visit How to Dispute Your MIB Consumer File.
In addition to MIB's Underwriting Services, MIB also provides subscribing MIB members with access to TransUnion's Identity Manager Verification Service (IDMV) (a service provided by TransUnion Risk and Alternative Data Solutions, Inc., "TRADS") for their U.S. life insurance applicants. In other words, when using MIB's services, MIB's members may submit an identity verification inquiry that is sent to TRADS to verify an applicant's identity. By obtaining a TransUnion IDMV report, MIB members verify the identities of their customers in order to ensure the quality of their business, manage identity risk, prevent identity fraud, and comply with their obligations under USA Patriot Act (anti-money laundering and customer identification programs). These reports are used solely for identity verification and cannot be used to determine an individual's eligibility for insurance.