MGAs Urge Congress to Pass Surplus Lines Reform Bill

September 22, 2006

The American Association of Managing General Agents is asking Congressman John A. Boehner, R-Ohio, and Congressman John Conyers, D-Mich., to place the Non-Admitted & Reinsurance Reform Act of 2006, HR 5637, on the suspension calendar next week to expedite its passage.

A letter faxed to both officials yesterday said “the legislation is integral to the ability of consumers to have ready access to affordable property and casualty insurance in these uncertain times. The Bill will also eliminate millions of dollars of inefficiencies and needless processing in order to expedite the binding of property and casualty insurance by surplus lines agents, brokers and insurance companies for policyholders while, at the same time, putting guidelines in place to ensure compliance with regulations. The reforms in the Act are necessary to maintain pace with ever-changing risk exposures and protecting the livelihoods and businesses of America’s consumers and businesses.”

“The AAMGA has been in the forefront of moving the necessary reforms in the surplus lines market forward in its on-going efforts with state and federal legislators and regulators. We have testified before the Financial Services Subcommittee in the House of Representatives, and worked with Chairman Richard Baker (R. LA) and his staff on the components and drafting of the Bill, while also ensuring the maintenance of state regulation and the efficiencies of the state stamping and surplus line offices, ” said AAMGA President Scott Anderson of Concorde General Agency, Fargo, N.D.

AAMGA and other insurance industry representatives have been heavily at work to complement the provisions of HR 5637 and streamline the payment and allocation of multi-state commercial risks, according to Anderson.

“Our marketplace needs to streamline its efficiencies in order to remain competitive and offer greater value to our customers,” said Jim Roe, president of Arlington/Roe in Indianapolis, Ind.

“This legislation will be of great assistance to all of us in the surplus lines marketplace – but also to consumers who need improved access to insurance coverage in states like Florida where the impact from the hurricanes of 2004 and 2005 continues being felt,” said R.C. Chafin, president of Seacoast Underwriters in Coral Gables, Fla.

The AAMGA is asking all of its members, which write more than $24 billion in annual written premium, to fax Congressman Boehner in support of the effort.

Separately, the AAMGA also joined today with the Council of Insurance Agents and Brokers, the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of America, the American Association of Independent Claims Professionals and other industry groups in sending an open letter to the leadership of the U.S. House of Representatives, urging HR 5637 to be placed on the suspension calendar for expedited passage.

Source: American Association of Managing General Agents

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