WASHINGTON, D.C., April 28, 2016 — The Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America (IIABA or the Big “I”) praises the U.S. House of Representatives for passing H.J. Res. 88, sponsored by Reps. Phil Roe (R-Tennessee), Charles Boustany (R-Louisiana) and Ann Wagner (R-Missouri). The resolution is part of an effort to halt a recently released Department of Labor (DOL) fiduciary rule under the Congressional Review Act.
“The fiduciary rule places new restrictions on Big ‘I’ members who offer retirement advice related to most IRAs and 401(k)s, as well as some HSAs,” says Charles Symington, Big “I” senior vice president of external and government affairs. “The rule, while arguably well-intentioned, will make retirement advice more costly and complicated, particularly for the middle class leading to less consumer choice.”
The final DOL rule, which was released on April 6, tightens conflict of interest rules under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act. The DOL did make some changes to simplify the rule in its final proposal, however, substantial concerns remain that the rule will significantly increase compliance costs, oversight costs and legal exposure for insurance agents. The increased costs and exposure will likely act to limit access to advice for those consumers who need it most.
"This harmful rule is expected to start taking effect in April 2017 and be fully implemented by Jan. 1, 2018, barring congressional or legal action,” continues Symington. “The Big ’I’ is grateful for the House’s swift consideration of the resolution and urges Senate action.”
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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