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In depth: PIA National's Besesparis on state vs. federal regulation
PIA National Senior Vice President Ted Besesparis says the
battle over who should regulate insurance — the federal
government or states — has been going on for decades. The
issue flares up every couple of years and Besesparis thinks
it's about to flare up again. In an article published in the December issue of
American Agent & Broker magazine, Besesparis says it's
time for the states and independent insurance agents to push
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NCOIL annual conference highlights: State regulation
State legislators from across the country gathered at
the annual meeting of the National Conference of Insurance Legislators. The conference was
held Nov. 21-24 in Nashville, Tenn.
PIA National was there.
Association Assistant Vice President of Regulatory Affairs David Eppstein represented
PIA at the meetings. Also attending was National Association of Insurance
Commissioners President and Louisiana Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon.
Thanksgiving and cooking related claims
Thanksgiving is over. Weekly Industry News
and the boards, management and staff of the
PIA Western Alliance hope yours was relaxing,
fun and meaningful. We belatedly express our
thankfulness for you, your support of this
association and of the independent agency
system. While the holiday is over, the claims related to Thanksgiving are not. This story is about
PIA National: Offering lower priced MVR quotes
PIA National says it can help you lower your
agency's MVR expenses and prescreen clients.
Through PIA's partnership with Drivers History, real-time,
comprehensive driver's violation reports are
now available for as little as 75 cents per transaction.
These DocIT reports contain traffic and criminal
traffic violation information on drivers sourced
directly from court records — not the MVR.
A new Deductible Reimbursement Insurance is now available to all residents of the Western Region (except Alaska). Licensed insurance agents may now sign up on the ZeroDeductible website and offer deductible reimbursement insurance to their clients directly for their auto, home and boat policies.
Click here to learn more!
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Special report: Insurance companies and congressional friends
Weekly Industry News found an
interesting article from Kate Nocera of
an online publication called BuzzFeed.
In the article, she wonders if insurers
have any friends left on Capitol Hill.
Her theory is that Democrats have
never liked them and now Republicans
are starting to feel the same way. The Affordable Care Act — or Obamacare — she says is to blame.
HealthCare.gov working? Kind of
The Obama administration is claiming victory
of sorts. It made the self-imposed end of
November deadline and HealthCare.gov is
working. Kind of. The overhaul — says Jeffrey Zients who supervised the fix — said recently that the
website can take up to 50,000 people at a time and will process 800,000 visitors per
day. In November, 100,000 people were able to navigate the broken website and sign
up. But ABC News reports that only 26,000 were actually able to purchase health
Not yet finished: Supreme Court and Obamacare
The U.S. Supreme Court is not done with the
Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The
court has agreed to hear arguments and to —
once and for all — settle the dispute between the
Obama administration and companies having
religious objections to providing birth control
within insurance policies. Contraceptives are
required to be in the cost-free benefits of health insurance policies.
NAIC Obama meeting: Obamacare and FIO, FSB
After millions of health insurance plans were canceled
because they didn't meet the Affordable Care Act
minimum standards, people complained. Lots of
people. And loudly.
President Barack Obama's fix was to tell people they can keep their plans if insurers agree and
if the insurance commissioners of the individual states agreed. So far the reaction of
insurers and insurance commissioners is mixed.
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.
Obama to NAIC: You don't have to go along with the fix
Officials from the National Association of
Insurance Commissioners who met with
President Barack Obama on Nov. 20 said he will
not force state insurance regulators to follow his
plan to allow insurance companies to renew
health insurance policies that do not meet the Affordable Care Act's minimum
essential benefit requirements. Those attending the Obama meeting made that
statement in a conference call following the meeting.
Obamacare exchange reluctantly reports breach
For the last couple of months, security
experts have expressed concern over
the security of information on
Obamacare health insurance exchange
websites. Now one has been
compromised. The Vermont exchange — called Vermont Health Connect — has confirmed a security
Delay: Small business and Obamacare exchange
The Obama administration said small
businesses are off the hook for an
Obamacare requirement. At least in
the 36 states served by the federal
The reason is the federal government's small-business insurance exchange will not be
ready until 2014.
Obamacare and an insurance company payment proposal
There are lots of Affordable Care Act worries. Name the
angle and someone is chewing fingernails. This angle
involves insurers, the exchanges — or marketplaces as the
administration now calls them — and the potential loss of
profit to insurers from too many sick people participating in
the exchanges. The Obama administration added to those worries when the president announced the
fix of his promise, "if you want to keep your plan, you can keep it."
2 House members propose an Obamacare slowdown
Rep. Ami Bera, D-Calif., and Charles Boustany, R-La., are both physicians.
Bera likes the Affordable Care Act. Boustany not so
much. What they do agree upon is that the rollout of
Obamacare needs to slow down.
That's why they introduced their Small Business and
Family Relief Act.
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Obamacare insurer direct enrollment test
Insurers and the Obama administration
are testing fixes to Healthcare.gov. One
idea is to allow insurers and Web-based
brokers to directly enroll consumers that
qualify for subsidies under the law. Industry executives who recently met with the president urged him to resolve the
problems preventing them from directly enrolling consumers in subsidized coverage.
Cybercrime: Costs rising and is a big 1 coming?
Experts will tell you the new
No. 1 threat to security in
the United States is cybercrime.
As we'll learn later, some think
it's just a matter of time before
the U.S. experiences a major
attack; one that could cause
dramatic problems for the
Progressive CEO Peter Lewis dies at 80
Peter Lewis who, as CEO for 35 years, guided the massive growth and
innovation at Progressive Corp. He died of a
heart attack on Nov. 23. Lewis died at his
Coconut Grove, Fla., home at the age of 80.
Defending Obamacare: Obama on the offensive
President Barack Obama is going on the offensive.
The administration says HealthCare.gov is
fixed and working correctly — sort of — and
for the next two weeks, Obama is going to
tout the positives of his signature legislation.
Driving deaths, distractions growing
Traffic deaths are rising. The National Highway
Traffic Safety Administration said this
is the first increase since 2005. In 2012, there
were 33,561 fatal accidents in 2012. That's
1,082 more than the 32,479 in 2011. A
whopping 72 percent of that came during the first
quarter of 2012.
Beyond insurance: How to protect both the business and personal assets
By David B. Mandell, JD, MBA, and Jason M. O'Dell, MS, CWM
In our litigious society, business owners, as well as their companies, are high-visibility lawsuit targets. Lawsuits and claims from employees, customers, competitors and even the government are part of doing business today — in virtually every field, including the insurance industry. Unfortunately, many such owners and business executives think that insurance is the only viable protection tool to shield their businesses and themselves from such litigation risks. However, as we will explore in this article, insurance policies have their limitations and drawbacks. Moreover, there are other techniques that can be explored to shield and build wealth and often save taxes. If you are interested in learning how to shield your business and personal assets while also reducing taxes and building wealth, please read on.
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