IRI Submits Testimony to House Financial Services Committee

Posted on October 24, 2017

IRI Submits Testimony to House Financial Services Committee

Urges FIO to assist federal regulators and congress with retirement saving enhancements 

WASHINGTON, D.C. –The Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) released the following statement from IRI Senior Vice President and General Counsel Lee Covington after submitting testimony to the House Financial Services Committee’s Subcommittee on Housing and Insurance in advance of its hearing today on the role the federal government plays in the insurance industry. The hearing is intended to examine the domestic and international roles of the Federal Insurance Office (FIO) and Congressional oversight of international insurance issues.

“The Insured Retirement Institute commends Chairman Sean Duffy (R-WI) and Ranking Member Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO) for focusing the Subcommittee’s attention on the role of the Federal Insurance Office (FIO). As the only federal agency with extensive knowledge and understanding of the insurance industry, FIO is uniquely positioned to share its expertise with other federal agencies to help advance common sense policies, which will enhance Americans’ financial security throughout retirement.  IRI’s 2017 Retirement Security Blueprint recommends a number of policy changes to achieve this goal - including clarifying an employer’s fiduciary responsibility in the annuity selection safe-harbor, enabling portability for workers with lifetime income products, and providing lifetime income estimates on workers’ benefit statements.

It is also crucial for FIO to work in coordination with state insurance commissioners to ensure the full implementation of the National Association of Registered Agents and Brokers Reform Act (NARAB II).  This law established a federal clearinghouse to streamline the licensing process for financial professionals who operate under the jurisdiction of multiple state insurance departments. However, before implementation can commence, it is imperative for the President to nominate, and the Senate to expeditiously confirm, the 13-member NARAB board. IRI is calling upon FIO and Members of Congress to urge the President to swiftly nominate qualified individuals to serve on the board quickly and allow NARAB to begin to carry out its mission. 

IRI remains committed to working with Members of Congress, federal and state regulators, and the administration to increase consumer protections and help Americans attain a financially secure retirement.”

Click here to view IRI’s testimony.