The Texas Professional Insurance Agents (Texas PIA) is throwing its weight behind an effort to scrap the Federal Insurance Office, announcing its support for the Federal Insurance Office Abolishment Act, introduced in the Senate by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas).
The Federal Insurance Office was created in 2010 as part of the reforms enacted under the Dodd-Frank Act. However, many insurance industry bodies want the FIO scrapped, saying many of its powers are duplicative of those of other government agencies and its regulation of the industry is onerous.
“Since the Federal Insurance Office was created in 2010, it has continuously tried to increase its duties and expand the role of the federal government in insurance,” said David Gorman, president of the Texas PIA and Texas national director for PIA National. “Simply put, its very existence is a threat to the successful state insurance regulatory system. The Texas PIA firmly believes the insurance industry must throw its weight behind repealing the Federal Insurance Office once and for all.”
Since its inception, the FIO has called for federal regulation of mortgage insurance, inclusion in supervisory colleges with state legislators, and uniform national standards for state guaranty associations – proposals which were opposed by industry bodies. The office is now seeking to administer the National Association of Registered Agents and Brokers, which the Texas PIA says is “well outside” of the agency’s mandate.
The Texas PIA played a leading role in pushing the repeal bill when it was initially introduced in 2019, the first time that legislation was ever put forward in the Senate to abolish the FIO.
“Senator Cruz’s office allowed us to lay out the very real threat the FIO presents to the state insurance regulatory system, and the senator’s championing of this bill is a clear example that constituents can have an impact on policymaking in Washington, DC,” said Victoria Reece, executive director of the Texas PIA. “The Texas PIA will continue to advocate in favor of it to build support for its eventual enactment.”