WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov 16, 2015—The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA or the Big “I”) applauds the U.S. House of Representatives for today’s passage of H.R. 1478, the “Policyholder Protection Act,” by Reps. Bill Posey (R-Florida) and Brad Sherman (D-California). The bill passed by a process called suspension of the rules, which is reserved for noncontroversial legislation. This common-sense legislation reinforces the strong consumer protections contained within the state insurance regulatory system. The “Policyholder Protection Act” has had the Big “I’s” endorsement since it was first introduced last spring.
“The passage of this legislation further exemplifies Congress’ commitment to state regulation of the insurance market, “says Charles Symington, Big “I” senior vice president of external and government affairs. “The Big ‘I’ applauds passage of this bill, which defends policyholder assets and ensures that carriers will be able to operate as intended by making the protection of policyholder assets their first priority.”
This legislation clarifies that state insurance regulators have the authority to safeguard the capital of insurance companies that are part of larger financial institutions. The bill clears up several ambiguities contained within the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act. Most importantly, the legislation prevents federal banking regulators from transferring the assets of a state regulated insurance company or subsidiary to an affiliated bank if state insurance commissioners believe such a transfer would be harmful to policyholders.
“The Big ‘I’ thanks the full House for acting on this bill and urges the Senate to consider its companion legislation, S. 798 by Sens. David Vitter (R-Louisiana) and Jon Tester (D-Montana), quickly,” says Symington.
Founded in 1896, the Big “I” is the nation’s oldest and largest national association of independent insurance agents and brokers, representing a network of approximately a quarter of a million agents, brokers and their employees nationally. Its members are businesses that offer customers a choice of policies from a variety of insurance companies. Independent agents and brokers offer all lines of insurance—property, casualty, life, health, employee benefit plans and retirement products. Web address: www.independentagent.com.
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