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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Pressing for Insurance Regulatory Reform

The National Journal held an Insurance Regulatory Modernization Summit this morning in Washington, DC, keynoted by Representative Ed Royce (R-Fullerton)and Michael T. McRaith, Director of the Federal Insurance Office (FIO).

Rep. Royce kicked off the event with a discussion of the state regulatory system for insurance - reminding the audience of his strong support for a federal regulator, which would be optional for insurance companies not designated as systemically significant (SIFI). He acknowledged that a federal regulator is not on the table for the short term and discussed a hybrid approach - a broad approach to navigating international regulation. He also discussed a more focused approach such as legislation that would allow military personnel to have portable auto insurance policies as they move around the U.S. He expects to sponsor a bill soon that would codify this approach.

While Director McRaith does not share the views of Rep. Royce on any kind of federal insurance charter - he called the state versus federal oversight discussion a relic - they do agree on changes like the the military auto insurance portability proposal advocated for by Rep. Royce. Indeed, the proposal was in the December report from the FIO along with a number of other proposals that would facilitate the smoother operation of the insurance industry by providing some level of federal support.

The National Journal will host an on-demand recording of the summit at its event web page.