Washington — The creation of a federal Office of Insurance Information (OII) is much closer to reality after a vote this week in a House subcommittee. The Financial Services Subcommittee on Capital Markets, Insurance, and Government Sponsored Enterprises sent H.R. 5840, the Office of Insurance Information Act to full committee.
As expected, the move is garnering mixed action. Proponents of the bill, who view it as necessity to harmonize U.S. regulations with international standards, are praising it.
Marc Racicot, president, American Insurance Association says the vote is “a recognition that an immediate need exists for federal expertise regarding the important national and international insurance trends in today’s rapidly changing and globalized marketplace. This office will help the U.S. Treasury analyze the important societal role that insurance plays in the domestic economy and will provide urgently needed leadership by the U.S. in international insurance regulatory policy making and agreements.”
Conversely, opponents of the legislation, such as the National Conference of Insurance Legislators, say the bill is a backdoor attempt to establish a federal charter and will undermine consumer protection and state insurance laws.
Sources: American Insurance Association, National Conference of Insurance Legislators
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