While there are few direct threats to the property/casualty industry in the current U.S. Congress, P/C insurers are advised to remain vigilant regarding attempts to alter antitrust exemptions insurers currently enjoy under the McCarran-Ferguson Act.

At the recently concluded American Association of Insurance Services Main Event conference, Thomas Litjen, VP of federal government relations for the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI), told attendees that despite Congress's focus on the nation's budget crisis, insurers need to be mindful of issues that could have a spillover effect on them. In the case of McCarran-Ferguson, Litjen said although repeal efforts have been largely and unsuccessfully aimed at health insurers, lawmakers could extend a repeal to include medical malpractice insurance, a P/C line of business. "In such a small specialty line, the repeal of McCarran-Ferguson would hurt competition," Litjen said. "It would hurt new entrants into the line."

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