AIA Hails N.M.’s Next Step toward Insurance Regulation Modernization

February 22, 2002

Legislation supported by the American Insurance Association (AIA) to reduce government regulation of commercial insurance in New Mexico was passed by the state legislature. The measure (SB 256), which passed last week with overwhelming support in both houses of the legislature, enables the state insurance superintendent to issue an order to reduce regulatory filing requirements for most, if not all forms, for commercial insurance policies.

“This is a very positive step for the commercial insurance market in New Mexico,” Ronald H. Cobb, AIA vice president, southwest region, said. “We are hopeful Superintendent Serna will act promptly to issue a rule which will provide policyholders with the maximum flexibility to choose their coverages in a competitive market.” Superintendent Serna issued an order in December that lifts several rate filing requirements for companies that sell commercial insurance in New Mexico. This latest measure passed by the legislature will further facilitate regulatory modernization by giving the Superintendent the ability to issue an order that could exempt commercial forms from the approval process, making it easier for insurers to bring innovative products to the marketplace more quickly.

“These actions add New Mexico to a growing list of states which have chosen to modernize their regulatory systems for the benefit of consumers and insurers alike. Since passage of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999, the insurance industry has been moving toward a more modern regulatory framework. We look forward to working with Superintendent Serna in his effort to develop a more competitive marketplace for commercial insurance in New Mexico,” Cobb said.

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