Tuesday, November 23, 2021
ACLI President and CEO Susan Neely and George B. Pickett, J.D. CLU ® AEP ®, LACP of the NAIFA Government Relations Committee, have issued the following joint statement on the best interest annuity rule adopted recently by the Mississippi Insurance Department.
WASHINGTON – American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI) President and CEO Susan Neely and George B. Pickett, J.D. CLU ® AEP ®, LACP of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA) Government Relations Committee, issued the following joint statement on the best interest annuity rule adopted recently by the Mississippi Insurance Department:
“Retirement savers seeking lifetime income from annuities should work with financial professionals who act in consumers’ best interest. The rule adopted by the Mississippi Insurance Department makes certain that they will.
“Mississippi is the 18th state to adopt enhanced protections for annuity consumers. These new laws and regulations align with the ‘best interest of consumer enhancements’ in the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Suitability in Annuity Transactions Model Regulation. They also harmonize with the SEC’s Regulation Best Interest.
“Unlike a fiduciary-only approach, these measures ensure that all savers, particularly financially vulnerable middle-income Americans, can access information about different choices for long-term security in retirement. According to a new study, a fiduciary-only approach would limit choices for consumers, reduce savings of nearly 3 million people by $140 billion and widen the racial wealth gap by 20%.
“The U.S. Congress reaffirmed the importance of lifetime income when it passed legislation in 2019 that made it easier for employers to include annuities in workplace retirement plans. These protections safeguard consumers while also ensuring that middle- and working-class families retain access to annuities.
“We urge more states to follow Mississippi’s example and implement this sensible consumer protection. Then, more consumers working to protect their family’s financial future would benefit from a best interest standard of care, no matter where they live.”
About ACLI: The American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI) is the leading trade association driving public policy and advocacy on behalf of the life insurance industry. 90 million American families rely on the life insurance industry for financial protection and retirement security. ACLI’s member companies are dedicated to protecting consumers’ financial wellbeing through life insurance, annuities, retirement plans, long-term care insurance, disability income insurance, reinsurance, and dental, vision and other supplemental benefits. ACLI’s 280 member companies represent 95 percent of industry assets in the United States.
About NAIFA: Founded in 1890, NAIFA is the oldest, largest and most prestigious association representing the interests of financial services professionals from every Congressional district in the United States. Our mission – to advocate for a positive legislative and regulatory environment, enhance business and professional skills, and promote the ethical conduct of its members – is the reason NAIFA has consistently and resoundingly stood up for financial services professionals and called upon members to grow their knowledge while following the highest ethical standards in the industry.