AIA Welcomes Ally in Push for Federal Insurance Regulatory Presence

February 4, 2002

An active federal government role in the modernization of insurance industry regulation is more likely with the addition of yet another key industry group to the policymaking effort, according to the American Insurance Association (AIA).

“The Independent Insurance Agents of America’s (IIAA) recent public embrace of a federal approach to insurance regulatory modernization should be applauded,” said Leigh Ann Pusey, AIA senior vice president for federal affairs. “We are happy to have such an influential organization – which represents insurance consumers across the country – working with us on this important issue.”

AIA has long advocated creation of a national, market-based regulatory system that would include optional federal chartering for property-casualty insurance companies. Key to successful implementation of such a system would be development of a uniform operating environment for insurers doing business in multiple jurisdictions.

“We have said that we will judge any and all regulatory modernization proposals against our own ‘Guiding Principles’ for reform,” Pusey noted.

“Because of its lack of an enforcement mechanism, we have some questions about whether the IIAA’s proposal can achieve true uniformity. But we are willing to work with them on an approach that reflects market dynamics and the need for a federal role.”

Pusey added that AIA “is encouraged that more and more members of Congress – on both sides of the aisle, and both sides of Capitol Hill – seem to recognize the need to modernize the insurance marketplace.” In closing, she said that the AIA “looks forward to advancing federal regulatory modernization legislation that meets our principled test.”

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