Ensuring a Dignified & Secure Retirement for 30 Years

IRI30-logo-30IRI commemorates thirty years of helping America’s workers and retirees achieve a financially secure and dignified retirement. At this historical milestone, IRI is a proven leader and an established, respected industry institution.

Our unique value proposition, representing the entire supply chain of the insured retirement industry, is a pivotal element of our enduring organizational strength. Our shared industry commitment to champion retirement security has delivered successful outcomes for our members, consumers, and our nation.

As we look forward, we renew that commitment as we lead the retirement income industry as the premier advocate, trusted voice, and thought leader.

Early Annuity Milestones

The first variable annuity is issued by TIAA-CREF for use in college- and university qualified retirement plans.

In SEC v. Variable Annuity Life Insurance Company, the Supreme Court holds that variable annuities are subject to federal securities regulation.

The first non-qualified variable annuity policy becomes available through the Variable Annuity Life Insurance Company (VALIC).

The Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act of 1982 allows annuities to keep their valuable tax-deferred status, retains the exclusion ratio, which treats annuitization payments as part return of principal and part return of taxable earnings, and changes the taxation of withdrawals from principal first to income first.

The NAVA Years

The National Association for Variable Annuities (NAVA) is formed. 

The guaranteed minimum withdrawal benefit (GMWB) is introduced.

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) adopts the Senior Protection in Annuity, which is subsequently amended to require insurance producers to satisfy a suitability standard when recommending annuities to all consumers.

The Straight Through Processing Initiative (STP) – was started to define a complete set of process and supporting information/data standards specifying a fully electronic process for initiating, processing, managing, and delivering an insured retirement income product (e.g. annuity) new business order in a manner that satisfies all regulatory requirements.

The Pension Protection Act of 2006 overhauls the federal pension plan and tax laws, which, among other provisions, allows annuities to include long-term care riders and makes it easier for traditional defined contribution plans to offer annuities to workers by clarifying the “safest available annuity” standard under ERISA. 

IRI - Championing Retirement Security

NAVA becomes the Insured Retirement Institute (IRI). 

The Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, passed by Congress in response to the financial crisis of 2008-09, includes a provision that preserves the states’ exclusive jurisdiction over indexed annuities. 

The Internal Revenue Service adopts its final qualifying longevity annuity contract (QLAC) rules, which govern the use of deferred income annuities in qualified retirement plans.

The Department of Labor publishes its final Conflict of Interest Rule – Retirement Investment Advice, defining the term “Fiduciary” under the Employment Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA).

The United State Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit vacates the DOL Fiduciary Rule in a case brought by IRI and several other industry organizations.

The SECURE Act becomes law in December 2019, paving the way for broader inclusion of annuities and guaranteed lifetime income benefits in employer-sponsored defined contribution plans.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) adopts Regulation Best Interest (Reg BI).

Responding to the global Covid-19 crisis, IRI forcefully and quickly responds with revamped strategic priorities to accelerate adoption of digital strategies to ensure annuity transaction business could continue, a five-point legislative plan to help retirement savers, an effort seeking relief from federal and state regulations that inhibited the use of digital solutions, and an aggressive, virtual member engagement program.

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) amends its Suitability in Annuity Transactions Model Regulation to establish a best interest standard for insurance producers that aligns with Reg BI.

The SEC adopts a rule authorizing the use of a summary prospectus for variable annuities and variable life insurance, nearly ten years after IRI’s initial petition for rulemaking.

IRI celebrates its 30th anniversary.