NAIFA Supports Creating Federal Insurance Office of Information
Lee Allen, Vice President of Communications and Marketing, NAIFA
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FALLS CHURCH, VA (December 2, 2009) — The National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA) applauds the House Financial Services Committee for advancing legislation sponsored by Representatives Paul Kanjorski (D-PA) and Judy Biggert (R-IL) to establish a Federal Insurance Office of information within the Treasury Department. Establishing a centralized body is an important step in advancing insurance expertise and understanding at the federal level, and in bringing some degree of uniformity when dealing with domestic and international insurance regulatory and trade matters.
NAIFA President Thomas D. Currey, CLU, ChFC, LUTCF says, “Currently, there are 14 federal agencies that have a role in regulating insurance, and yet there is no central body of expertise at the federal level to provide advice and counsel the Administration and Congress when policies that impact our industry both at home and abroad are considered.”
The financial crisis of the past year illustrated the inter-connectedness of the financial industries, as well as financial markets around the world. Currey continues, “Insurance is a major financial services sector that contributes trillions in long-term investment to the American economy. There needs to be a fundamental understanding at the federal level of the industry and its value to consumers.”
NAIFA also offered its support for an amendment offered by Representatives Melissa Bean (D-IL) and Ed Royce (R-CA) that would require the new office to conduct a study on how to best modernize the current system of insurance regulation. In a letter sent yesterday to the Financial Services Committee, NAIFA and other industry partners, wrote, “As you undertake modernization of our financial regulatory system, it is critical that you undertake a thoughtful and comprehensive examination of the current insurance and reinsurance regulatory regime, and the ways in which it might be improved to ensure effective oversight, consumer protection, innovation and robust competition in the insurance marketplace.” The amendment was adopted by voice vote.
A copy of the letter is available here.
About NAIFA: NAIFA comprises more than 700 state and local associations representing the interests of approximately 200,000 agents and their associates nationwide. NAIFA members focus their practices on one or more of the following: life insurance and annuities, health insurance and employee benefits, multiline, and financial advising and investments. The Association’s mission is to advocate for a positive legislative and regulatory environment, enhance business and professional skills, and promote the ethical conduct of its members.