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Sen. Landrieu Goes to Bat for Agents in MLR Controversy

Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu (D), chair of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, has sent a letter to HHS Secretary Sebelius in which...
July 26, 2011

Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu (D), chair of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, has sent a letter to HHS Secretary Sebelius in which she speaks up for independent insurance agents whose compensation is being reduced as a result of interim medical loss ratio (MLR) regulations.

In the letter, Landrieu warns that the MLR requirements harm insurance agents and the small businesses that rely on them. Because HHS regulations for medical loss ratio calculations include agent compensation among administrative costs, many agents are seeing their compensations reduced as much as 50 percent.

Landrieu writes, "The regulations that HHS has issued are negatively impacting the livelihoods of insurance agents, who are small business owners that provide valuable guidance and support to insurance consumers at the point of sale and throughout the life of the policy." She adds that the MLR regulations are "threatening to put many out of business at a time when the need for agent services in the years to come is likely to be great." Sen. Landrieu also states, "I firmly believe that agent compensation should not be included in the MLR calculation." She urges HHS "to delay the inclusion of agent compensation in the calculation of the MLR until HHS determines its authority to act." You can read the full letter here.