26 USC 816 - Life insurance company defined

(a) Life insurance company defined 
For purposes of this subtitle, the term life insurance company means an insurance company which is engaged in the business of issuing life insurance and annuity contracts (either separately or combined with accident and health insurance), or noncancellable contracts of health and accident insurance, if
(1) its life insurance reserves (as defined in subsection (b)), plus
(2) unearned premiums, and unpaid losses (whether or not ascertained), on noncancellable life, accident, or health policies not included in life insurance reserves,

comprise more than 50 percent of its total reserves (as defined in subsection (c)). For purposes of the preceding sentence, the term insurance company means any company more than half of the business of which during the taxable year is the issuing of insurance or annuity contracts or the reinsuring of risks underwritten by insurance companies.

(b) Life insurance reserves defined 


Advertisement
view counter
(1) In general 
For purposes of this part, the term life insurance reserves means amounts
(A) which are computed or estimated on the basis of recognized mortality or morbidity tables and assumed rates of interest, and
(B) which are set aside to mature or liquidate, either by payment or reinsurance, future unaccrued claims arising from life insurance, annuity, and noncancellable accident and health insurance contracts (including life insurance or annuity contracts combined with noncancellable accident and health insurance) involving, at the time with respect to which the reserve is computed, life, accident, or health contingencies.
(2) Reserves must be required by law 
Except
(A) in the case of policies covering life, accident, and health insurance combined in one policy issued on the weekly premium payment plan, continuing for life and not subject to cancellation, and
(B) as provided in paragraph (3),

in addition to the requirements set forth in paragraph (1), life insurance reserves must be required by law.

(3) Assessment companies 
In the case of an assessment life insurance company or association, the term life insurance reserves includes
(A) sums actually deposited by such company or association with State officers pursuant to law as guaranty or reserve funds, and
(B) any funds maintained, under the charter or articles of incorporation or association (or bylaws approved by a State insurance commissioner) of such company or association, exclusively for the payment of claims arising under certificates of membership or policies issued on the assessment plan and not subject to any other use.
(4) Amount of reserves 
For purposes of this subsection, subsection (a), and subsection (c), the amount of any reserve (or portion thereof) for any taxable year shall be the mean of such reserve (or portion thereof) at the beginning and end of the taxable year.

Advertisement
view counter
(c) Total reserves defined 
For purposes of subsection (a), the term total reserves means
(1) life insurance reserves,
(2) unearned premiums, and unpaid losses (whether or not ascertained), not included in life insurance reserves, and
(3) all other insurance reserves required by law.
(d) Adjustments in reserves for policy loans 
For purposes only of determining under subsection (a) whether or not an insurance company is a life insurance company, the life insurance reserves, and the total reserves, shall each be reduced by an amount equal to the mean of the aggregates, at the beginning and end of the taxable year, of the policy loans outstanding with respect to contracts for which life insurance reserves are maintained.
(e) Guaranteed renewable contracts 
For purposes of this part, guaranteed renewable life, accident, and health insurance shall be treated in the same manner as noncancellable life, accident, and health insurance.
(f) Amounts not involving life, accident, or health contingencies 
For purposes only of determining under subsection (a) whether or not an insurance company is a life insurance company, amounts set aside and held at interest to satisfy obligations under contracts which do not contain permanent guarantees with respect to life, accident, or health contingencies shall not be included in reserves described in paragraph (1) or (3) of subsection (c).
(g) Burial and funeral benefit insurance companies 
A burial or funeral benefit insurance company engaged directly in the manufacture of funeral supplies or the performance of funeral services shall not be taxable under this part but shall be taxable under section 831.
(h) Treatment of deficiency reserves 
For purposes of this section and section 842 (b)(2)(B)(i), the terms life insurance reserves and total reserves shall not include deficiency reserves.