N.Y. Sen. Seward Urges Restraint in Response to Insurance Broker Scandal

May 9, 2005

New York State Senate Insurance Committee Chairman James Seward (R-Milford) told the Professional Insurance Wholesalers Association Inc. that New York policymakers should employ restraint as they look at, “what, if anything,” should be done to address the practices uncovered recently at some large national brokerages.

Seward’s comments were made during his keynote speech at the PIWA Midyear Conference, held at the Pearl River Hilton in Pearl River, N.Y., on May 3 and 4.

Seward told his audience that he understands the difference between large brokerage operations and the typical “Main-Street” agent, and that he is confident much of the New York State Senate also recognizes the difference.

“The actions of a few mega-brokers doesn’t speak for a need to have broad-based regulatory change,” Seward said.

Seward maintained that, despite the publicity surrounding the mega-broker scandal, no consumer complaints have been put forth with regard to broker compensation.

“Whatever is done legislatively, if anything, shouldn’t be disruptive to an otherwise well-functioning market,” he said.

Nearly 100 attended the PIWA Midyear Conference, at which Seward also was awarded the association’s PIWA’s Distinguished Insurance Service Award.

Established in 1978, the Professional Insurance Wholesalers Association of New York State Inc. is a trade association of New York state insurance wholesalers serving retail insurance producers with specialty and excess lines markets.

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