Q: Does the NAIC get anything done without pressure from Congress?

The whole process started in the NAIC, as it had to.

If radical changes in the way we illustrate policies were going to be made, they had to start at the NAIC.

  • The NAIC was only too well aware of the fact that sales illustrations were the subject of innumerable abuses and they wanted to correct those abuses.
  • Furthermore, the NAIC was being pushed by Senator Howard Metzenbaum who wanted to accuse the regulatory structure of not doing its job and then to bring regulation up to the federal level." 

--  Frank S. Irish <ASB>

1998 - Professional Standards Affecting Life Actuaries, Society of Actuaries

  • 1970s - Senator Hart - Life Insurance Buyer's Guide / Disclosure
  • 1990s - Senator Metzenbaum - Life Insurance Illustrations Model Regulation
  • Daniel Schwarcz - GOV- Ross?

(p7) - Daniel Schwarcz (Law Professor):   We hear a lot about how strong the State-based insurance regulatory system is, but little context as to why.

  • Historically, virtually every single major advance in State insurance regulation was a result of direct Federal pressure.

(p35) - Mr. Heck (D-WA) -  I don’t have a lot of time left, but I do want to observe with all due respect, Professor Schwarcz that if I were to restate your testimony as I  understand it, it may sound a little bit, well, frankly, like parody, but I think you were literally saying that every good thing that has happened in State regulation of insurance has happened because of the Federal Government. Really?

Mr. SCHWARCZ. Well, if you actually read the testimony and look at every single example I give, I would challenge you to point out any single example I have that was not directly triggered by Federal scrutiny. So—
Mr. HECK. So—
Mr. SCHWARCZ —so you can characterize it, but if you actually want to look— 

2017 1024 - GOV (House) - The Federal Government’s Role in the Insurance Industry - PDF-140p

I think this committee should announce to the NAIC officers that .... they should come up with a disclosure method, and if they do not come up with a satisfactory method by the end of the June meeting, that this committee will proceed.


  • There is nothing like a strong push to get the NAIC moving.
  • The talent is there, the commissioners and the actuarial staffs of various departments can accomplish it.

If Admiral Rickover had waited to solve-all the technical problems we wouldn't have an atomic submarine yet.

  • So, what we need is a push from outside, because without that push I'm afraid the NAIC will study it for decades.  (p1503)

--  John A. Durkin, New Hampshire Insurance Commissioner

1973 — GOV - The Life Insurance Industry: Part 2 - Senator Hart

Even some insurance commissioners have piled on.

  • Just last week, Mr. Csiszar spoke to industry executives saying, ‘‘You have to force us at the NAIC, hold a club over our heads, knock us over the head, use every tool in your bag.’’

--  J. Robert Hunter, Director of Insurance, Consumer Federation of America  (p23)

2003 1022 - GOV - Federal Involvement in the Regulation of the Insurance Industry, aka Insurance Industry Regulation [PDF-147VIDEO-CSPAN

  • Senator SUNUNU. So you think things are really going to change. It’s been a slow, painful——
  • Mr. CSISZAR. I think——
  • Senator SUNUNU.—dragged-out process——
  • Mr. CSISZAR.—I think we can make a change——
  • Senator SUNUNU.—but things are about to change.
  • Mr. CSISZAR.—and I—you know, as I said, you know, and I’ve been criticized for it, but I welcome this kind of opportunity, in a sense, because it does put pressure on us to change. And I don’t think that’s necessarily bad.  (p94)

--  Ernst Csiszar, Vice President, National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), - South Carolina

2003 1022 - GOV - Federal Involvement in the Regulation of the Insurance Industry, aka Insurance Industry Regulation - [PDF-147VIDEO-CSPAN

  • (Terri) VAUGHAN:  All right. I have to say, I have always said I appreciate that Congress puts some pressure on us because it makes us up our game.

Chairman REED:  Well, that is—I think the purpose of this hearing is not so much pressure, but this is an important set of issues and we want to devote ourselves to listening but also providing at least support for your efforts and suggestions based upon the panel of places we have to do more.

2011 0914 - GOV (Senate) - Emerging Issues in Insurance Regulation - Congressman Reed (RI) - [PDF-51p, VIDEO-Senate page]

Daniel Schwarcz: And so I think one of the—and again, Dr. Vaughan mentioned the fact that, well, it took us a while to get to this accreditation program.

How did they get there?

  • They got there because the solvency regime was completely inadequate, resulting in a lot of insolvencies in the 1990s, and the Federal Government started noticing this, writing reports.
  • They wrote a very well known report in insurance circles, ‘‘Failed Promises.’’ It led to massive change at the NAIC and I do think it has been very effective.

2011 0914 - GOV (Senate) - Emerging Issues in Insurance Regulation - Congressman Reed (RI) - [PDF-51p, VIDEO-Senate page]

  • (Terri) VAUGHANWe have been the recipient of several GAO studies, thank you very much, that pointed to problems in our system, and that we then went and fixed.  (p28)

2009 0305 - GOV - Perspectives on Systemic Risk - PDF-254p