Office of the Commissioner
Mississippi Insurance Commissioner
Mike Chaney

Mississippi native Mike Chaney, serves as Mississippi’s 11th Commissioner of Insurance. Commissioner Chaney previously served seven years in the Mississippi House of Representatives and eight years in the Mississippi Senate, where he was the first Republican to serve as Chairman of the Education Committee.

His leadership has led to the opening of a Mississippi Insurance Department office on the Gulf Coast; and the creation a wind mitigation program for the Mississippi Gulf Coast region to strengthen homes against hurricane-force winds and help homeowners realize discounts on their wind insurance premiums. Since Commissioner Chaney took office in 2008, nearly $16 million dollars has been returned to consumers in claims and premium payments.

In addition to the mitigation program, he has overseen the addition of nearly 200 new companies to write insurance in the state.

Other accomplishments include working to streamline and modernize the licensing procedures used in the department, strengthening and stabilizing the state’s Windpool, lengthening the amount of time the department has to respond to rate filings, worked to secure insurance for volunteer firefighters and worked for legislation to protect victims of domestic violence from discrimination by health insurance companies. Regulations were also changed to allow for two-year licensing of agents in the state, saving the department money and making life easier for the agents.

As State Fire Marshal, Chaney leads a commitment to reducing the number of fire deaths in the state. Since 2009, Mississippi’s fire death rate per year has been reduced by over 35%. In 2012, the state had the lowest number of fire deaths recorded in a single year since the office has been keeping such records.

Chaney is a businessman with a background in energy and agriculture and a strong advocate for consumers. He is a pioneer in worker’s compensation in Mississippi. He has served on numerous non-profit boards, religious and civic boards, and community development entities, including serving as President of the Vicksburg/Warren County Chamber of Commerce and President of the Vicksburg/Warren County Economic Development Committee. He is a Rotarian and a Paul Harris Fellow; a past president of the Republican Elected Officials of Mississippi and served on the state Republican Executive Committee. He remains active in the Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi.

He has also directed a market conduct study on a major insurer in the state and studied and reduced several major rate filings by companies; and guided the department through the complicated process of complying with the provisions of the Federal Affordable Care Act, health care law.

During his time in the Mississippi Legislature, he was named Legislator of the Year by the Mississippi Realtors, the Mississippi Homebuilders Association and the Mississippi School Superintendents. Commissioner Chaney has received numerous other awards for his legislative work in education, economic development and catastrophe recovery.

As Commissioner, he was inducted into the 2013 Insurance Hall of Fame at his alma mater, Mississippi State University, where he received a B.S. in Business and Finance and received the 2013 Distinguished Service Award from the Ole Miss Risk Management and Insurance program, and its Professional Society.

He is active in the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, and has served three terms as chairman of the Property and Casualty C Committee.

Chaney is a veteran of the United States Army, serving in Vietnam.

He and his wife, Mary Thurmond Chaney have three children and eight grandchildren.



Duties of the Insurance Commissioner

The Commissioner of Insurance is elected to a four-year term and may be re-elected. Miss. Code Ann. § 83-1-1 et seq. The Commissioner is charged with execution of all laws relative to insurance companies, corporations, associations and fraternal orders, their agents and adjusters. The Commissioner licenses and regulates the practices of all insurance companies, agents, burial associations, fraternal societies, bail bondsmen, and other entities engaged in the business of insurance. The Commissioner, as State Fire Marshal, acting through the State Chief Deputy Fire Marshal, investigates all fires called to his attention occurring in the state, licenses manufacturers, installers/transporters and dealers of mobile homes and regulates their practices. The Commissioner, through the State Fire Marshal Division, administers the Mississippi Fire Prevention Code. The Commissioner, through the Fire Service Development Division, establishes guidelines, use and accountability for municipal and county fire protection funds. The Commissioner administers the Liquefied Compressed Gas Equipment Law (Miss. Code Ann. § 75-57-1 et seq.) and enforces the National Fire Protection Association Code, Books 54 and 58. The Commissioner encourages and supports all employees to attain and maintain professional designations in their career fields.

The Mississippi Surplus Lines Association (MSLA) is a non-profit association created to provide a stamping procedure for all eligible non-admitted/surplus lines insurance policies sold on risks to ensure the proper payment of premium taxes to the State of Mississippi. This association, under the direction of the Commissioner, has no separate regulatory powers. MSLA enables the Department to ensure that proper taxes are paid to the State of Mississippi. As a result of this law, the State receives additional taxes that were not received in previous years. Miss. Code Ann. § 83-21-17 et seq.

In addition to his regular duties, Commissioner Chaney participates in the following:

  • Health Insurance Management Board – Commissioner Chaney serves on this board, which oversees the activities of the statewide Children’s Health Insurance Program, established under Title XXI of the Social Security Act to provide child health care assistance to targeted, uninsured, low-income children.
    Miss. Code Ann.
    § 41-86-1 et seq.

  • Mississippi Automobile Insurance Plan – Commissioner Chaney or his designee attends meetings of the Mississippi Automobile Insurance Plan, which was created to provide automobile insurance coverage to eligible individuals who are unable to obtain such coverage through the voluntary market.
    Miss. Code Ann.
    § 63-15-65 et seq.

  • Mississippi Comprehensive Health Insurance Risk Pool Association - Commissioner Chaney appoints four members to this nine-member board, which provides a mechanism to make health and accident insurance coverage available to those citizens of Mississippi who, because of health conditions, cannot secure such coverage.
    Miss. Code Ann.
    § 83-9-211  et seq.

  • Mississippi Fire Personnel Minimum Standards and Certification Board – Commissioner Chaney serves as an ex-officio member of this board, and appoints fifteen members to this seventeen-member board. The Director of the State Fire Academy also serves as an ex-officio member of the board.
    Miss. Code Ann.
    § 45-11-251 et seq.

  • Mississippi Fire Prevention Code Board of Adjustments and Appeals – Commissioner Chaney appoints all five members to this board per the Standard Fire Prevention Code as adopted by Miss. Code Ann. § 45-11-103 et seq.

  • Mississippi Insurance Guaranty Association (Property and Casualty) – Commissioner Chaney approves the members of this board, which consists of not less than five nor more than nine members. The Association assists in the detection and prevention of insurer insolvencies and provides a mechanism for the payment of covered claims for insurance policies written by licensed property and casualty insurance companies to avoid excessive delay in payment and to avoid financial loss to claimants or policyholders because of insurer insolvencies.
    Miss. Code Ann.
    § 83-23-101 et seq.

  • Mississippi Life & Health Insurance Guaranty Association - Commissioner Chaney approves the members of this board, which consists of not less than five nor more than nine members. The Association assists in the detection and prevention of insurer insolvencies and provides a mechanism for the payment of covered claims for insurance policies written by licensed life and health insurance companies to avoid excessive delay in payment and to avoid financial loss to claimants or policyholders because of insurer insolvencies. 
    Miss. Code Ann. § 83-23-201 et seq.

  • Mississippi Tort Claims Board – Commissioner Chaney serves on this board, which provides coverage to governmental entities for every risk for which the board determines the respective governmental entities to be liable in the event of a claim or suit for injuries.
    Miss. Code Ann.
    § 11-46-18 et seq.

  • Mississippi Rural Risk Underwriting Association – Commissioner Chaney approves the plan of operation of this association, which is charged with providing essential property insurance coverage to eligible individuals who have been unable to secure such insurance through the voluntary market.
    Miss. Code Ann. § 83-38-1 et seq.

  • Mississippi Windstorm Underwriting Association - Commissioner Chaney approves the plan of operation of this board and appoints three members to the board, which coordinates the availability of wind and hail coverage in the six Mississippi Coastal counties (Hancock, Harrison, Jackson, Pearl River, Stone, and George). Additionally, a designee of the Commissioner attends each meeting of the Association.
    Miss. Code Ann.
    § 83-34-1 et seq.

  • Mississippi Workers Compensation Assigned Risk Plan / Mississippi Workers Compensation Assigned Risk Pool – Commissioner Chaney is responsible for administration of the Mississippi Workers Compensation Assigned Risk Plan, and its reinsurance mechanism, the Mississippi Workers Compensation Assigned Risk Pool, as stipulated in Miss. Code Ann. § 71-3-111 et seq. The Plan and Pool are organized to provide coverage to eligible employers who seek workers compensation coverage and are unable to obtain such coverage through the voluntary market.

  • Rural Fire Truck Acquisition Assistance Review Committee – Commissioner Chaney chairs this committee, which is responsible for reviewing all applications for compliance in regard to established guidelines for applicants to the Rural Fire Truck Acquisition Assistance Program as outlined in Miss. Code Ann. § 17-23-1 et seq.

  • State Employees Health Insurance Board Advisory Council – Commissioner Chaney serves on this council, which is responsible for advising the State and School Employees Health Insurance Management Board concerning the design of a state insurance plan for state employees.
    Miss. Code Ann.
    § 25-15-9 et seq.

  • State Liquefied Compressed Gas Board – Commissioner Chaney oversees this board, which is vested with the power to regulate matters pertaining to liquefied compressed gas in Mississippi. Commissioner Chaney appoints seven members to this board, including one from each of Mississippi’s five congressional districts, as well as two at-large members.
    Miss. Code Ann. § 75-57-1 et seq.