Big States Approve First Insurer Filing Under New Program
Contact: Bob Lotane 850/ 413-2515 850/ 528-2868
Florida, California and Texas Make Multi-State Review a Reality
Tallahassee – The concept of multiple states cooperating on efforts to ease differing regulatory mandates became reality today, as simultaneous approval was given to an annuity form by three states. The filing, from the New England Life Insurance Company, received approval by Florida, Texas and California, the three states that presently make up the Multi-State Review Project (MSRP).
"It is here; the future is now," said Kevin McCarty, director of the Florida Office of Insurance Regulation, "single source filing for multiple state approval is no longer something we are talking about, thinking about or planning to do." McCarty praised the work of his staff and also congratulated the Texas and California insurance departments for their great work on the program.
McCarty also applauded New England Life for having "the vision to be the first to take advantage of the program. It is tough to be the first to do anything, and New England Life was just great." The filing took 60 days to review.
The approval was for a Single Premium Deferred Annuity contract. Four more filings have been received by the MSRP and are under review. Additionally, at the recent meetings of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) a number of other states indicated they are looking toward joining the MSRP.
McCarty emphasizes that his office continues to support the larger NAIC effort of a formal Interstate Compact, which is aimed at adopting new nationwide product standards and a new product review agency. McCarty believes the success of the MSRP will only enhance the Compact's prospects, "We have shown that a product can be filed once and be approved for marketing to 26 percent of the nation's population in three of the largest states. The multi-state review concept is now reality."
Participation in the program is voluntary and does not preclude the option of making form filings with the three states individually. The chief regulators of the three states, along with Florida's Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher, signed a Memorandum of Understanding, on December 7, 2003, which made the MSRP possible. They believe the program will result in increased speed to market for insurers and a reduction in administrative costs for both insurance carriers and the insurance departments.