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Rest in Peace: Agents Move On From Contingent Commission Controversy

In a good sign for agents and brokers, the insurance press is writing the public policy obituary for the contingent commission controversy, which was initially...
August 3, 2011

In a good sign for agents and brokers, the insurance press is writing the public policy obituary for the contingent commission controversy, which was initially manufactured in late 2004 by then-New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer. We won't recount the long, involved story of how certain officials attempted to tarnish the reputations of Main Street insurance agents, who were never accused or suspected of doing anything wrong. During the bruhaha, PIA National filed legal action and our position was ultimately upheld when a court ruled that there is nothing illegal or improper about contingent commissions.

American Agent & Broker magazine recently published an extensive retrospective article on the subject, with comments from throughout the industry. PIA added its perspective. PIA National's Ted Besesparis observed, "The issue of contingent commissions that was raised during the Spitzer era has receded into history. Fortunately, the attempts by Spitzer and others to tarnish the reputations of those who did nothing wrong were ultimately not successful. How insurance producers or anyone else is paid is a business decision; it is not something to be determined by government bureaucrats," You can read the entire article here.