Thursday, May 26, 2022

Minnesota Becomes 25th State To Strengthen Protections For Annuity Consumers

WASHINGTON – Legislation recently signed into law by Minnesota Governor Tim Walz greatly enhances protections for consumers seeking lifetime income from annuities. Minnesota is the 25th state to implement the ‘best interest of consumer enhancements’ in the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC)  Suitability in Annuity Transactions Model Regulation. These new laws and regulations also align with the SEC’s Regulation Best Interest, providing robust consumer protections at the state and federal level.

“Minnesota’s new law marks a major milestone in the nationwide drive for enhanced protections for consumers seeking lifetime income from annuities,” said American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI) President & CEO Susan Neely. “These important protections have now been adopted in half of the states, and we hope others follow soon so more consumers can benefit from a best interest standard of care.”

“The new law passed by the Minnesota legislature and signed by Governor Walz is a victory for Minnesotans,” said Minnesota Insurance and Financial Services Council (MIFSC) Executive Director Robyn Rowen. “It provides retirement savers confidence the financial professional they work with is acting in the best interest of consumers.”

“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,” said National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA) Minnesota Advocacy Vice President Corey Anderson. “The protections adopted by Minnesota and 24 other states safeguard consumers while also ensuring that middle- and working-class families retain access to annuities.”

Unlike a fiduciary-only approach that limits choices for consumers, these measures offer strong protections while making sure savers, particularly financially vulnerable middle-income Americans, can access information about options for long-term security throughout retirement. A new survey finds that middle-income retirement savers would be very concerned about a regulation keeping them from accessing the professional financial guidance they want and need.

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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 94 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.

About MIFSC: The Minnesota Insurance and Financial Services Council (MIFSC) is the voice of Minnesota’s life insurance and financial services industry, an industry dedicated to protecting the financial security of Minnesotans through the sale of life, disability, and long-term care insurance, annuities, retirement plans and other health and financial products. 


Date Posted: May 26, 2022
Document ID: NR22-019
Contact:

Whit Cornman, ACLI, 202-624-2442
Suzanne Carawan, NAIFA, 703-770-8402
Robyn Rowen, MNIFSC, 651-308-6853