Code of the District of Columbia

§ 31–5204. Principal office and books, records, and files of corporation to be in District; exception; reincorporation of certain corporations; violations; prosecutions.

(a) Any corporation now or hereafter formed or organized under any provision of law in force and effect in the District of Columbia to engage in an insurance business shall maintain its principal office within said District and shall keep its books, records, and files therein, and shall not remove from said District either its principal office or its books, records, or files without the permission of the Mayor of the District of Columbia first had and obtained; provided, however, that nothing contained in this section shall be construed to apply to the books, records, and files of any such corporation kept in a branch office agency of such corporation, which books, records, and files relate solely to the business transacted by the said branch office agency; and provided further, that any insurance corporation created by special act of Congress is authorized upon resolution of its board of directors or trustees to reincorporate under the laws of any state of the United States, a certified copy of such resolution of such board of directors or trustees having first been filed in the Office of the Commissioner of Insurance and Securities [Commissioner of the Department of Insurance, Securities, and Banking] of the District of Columbia and recorded in the Office of the Recorder of Deeds of the District of Columbia. Upon compliance with the above conditions, the assets of the said corporation shall thereby become vested in the new corporation. Said new corporation shall faithfully carry out any and every right, obligation, and liability of said original corporation.

(b) Any corporation violating any of the provisions of this section shall forthwith forfeit its charter, which forfeiture shall operate as a revocation of its license to do business within said District.

(c) Any officer, agent, or employee of any such corporation who shall violate any of the provisions of this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction shall pay a fine of not less than $300 or be imprisoned for not more than 90 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment. All prosecutions under this section shall be upon information filed in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia in the name of the District of Columbia by the Corporation Counsel thereof or any of his assistants.


(Mar. 3, 1901, ch. 854, § 657a; May 17, 1932, 47 Stat. 158, ch. 189; Apr. 1, 1942, 56 Stat. 190, ch. 207, § 1; July 8, 1963, 77 Stat. 77, Pub. L. 88-60,§ 1; July 29, 1970, 84 Stat. 570, Pub. L. 91-358, title I, § 155(a); May 21, 1997, D.C. Law 11-268, § 10(d), 44 DCR 1730.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 35-204.

1973 Ed., § 35-204.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 31-1503 and § 31-3503.

Cross References

Hospital and medical services corporations, applicability of this section, see § 31-3503.

Managing general agent records, retention, see § 31-1503.

Editor's Notes

Delegation of functions: Reorganization Order No. 43, Part VIII, dated June 23, 1953, delegated to the Superintendent of Insurance the function of granting or denying permission to remove from the District of Columbia the principal office, books, records, and files of an insurance company, as set forth in subsection (a) of this section.

Department of Insurance abolished: See Historical and Statutory Notes following § 31-5201.

Change in Government

This section originated at a time when local government powers were delegated to a Board of Commissioners of the District of Columbia (see Acts Relating to the Establishment of the District of Columbia and its Various Forms of Governmental Organization in Volume 1). Section 401 of Reorganization Plan No. 3 of 1967 (see Reorganization Plans in Volume 1) transferred all of the functions of the Board of Commissioners under this section to a single Commissioner. The District of Columbia Self-Government and Governmental Reorganization Act, 87 Stat. 818, § 711 ( D.C. Code, § 1-207.11), abolished the District of Columbia Council and the Office of Commissioner of the District of Columbia. These branches of government were replaced by the Council of the District of Columbia and the Office of Mayor of the District of Columbia, respectively. Accordingly, and also pursuant to § 714(a) of such Act ( D.C. Code, § 1-207.14(a)), appropriate changes in terminology were made in this section.