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NAIC Supports, NCOIL Opposes Federal Insurance Office Bill

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) announced its qualified support for H.R. 2609 after successfully advocating for changes to the bill that protect...
December 2, 2009

State regulators and state legislators have split on the Federal Insurance Office Act of 2009 (H.R. 2609).

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) announced its qualified support for H.R. 2609 after successfully advocating for changes to the bill that protect certain parts of state law and regulation. That qualified support, however, was couched with a warning.

"We will continue to oppose a federal functional regulator for insurance or misguided attempts to further empower the FIO," an NAIC letter said, "but as currently drafted, the FIO is an appropriately narrow and targeted improvement to our system of supervision. Therefore, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) supports the legislation as amended."

The National Conference of Insurance Legislators (NCOIL) is having none of NAIC's strategy. The group passed a strong resolution opposing H.R. 2609, warning that the national insurance office is "a systematic effort to try to supplant state insurance laws."

What It Means to Agents:  "H.R. 2609 may have been pulled back from the precipice of federal insurance regulation at the last minute thanks to the NAIC's amendments, but it still places our national system of state based insurance regulation on shaky ground," said PIA National Executive Vice President & CEO Leonard C. Brevik. "It opens the door a crack to federal insurance regulation, when we should be making sure that door remains firmly closed."