The insurance industry should get ready for national and international regulation, along with greater scrutiny of popular products such as annuities, according to a Deloitte & Touche report
Regulators far and wide are bearing down on insurers and advisors in “a trend which is expected to accelerate and add to rule-making and overlapping of regulatory roles.” And it is not only the federal government that is tightening up oversight of insurers, the report says.
In an article published in InsuranceNewsNet.com today, journalist Arthur Postal explains that the National Association of Insurance Commissioners has developed its own self-regulatory system for insurers, Own Risk and Solvency Assessment (ORSA). ORSA went into effect this year. The report said that it will evolve over the next several years as regulators receive initial filings and provide feedback to industry.
“As the NAIC’s Solvency Modernization Initiative bears fruit, most US companies will be filing their first ORSAs in 2015 — even as they prepare for their first Corporate Governance Disclosure Statements in 2016,” the report said. And, of course, there is always a chance for the unexpected, perhaps from the Federal Insurance Office (FIO), which has been relatively quiet in 2014, the report said.
The report did not say so, but a year-end report by the FIO indicated that federal officials are considering pre-empting inconsistent state laws regarding reinsurance collateral because the inability of states to adopt a uniform approach is increasing the costs of insurance for U.S. consumers.
Capital and governance are not the only issues insurers must deal with. Products, too, are under scrutiny. “Regulators are continuing to scrutinize annuity products, which are growing by leaps and bounds in the marketplace,” the report says.
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