A new system to streamline product filing is off the drawing board and about to start a full-fledged test run, the first for the Coordinated Advertising Rate and Form Review Authority.
Prudential Financial in Newark, N.J., became the first company to file a product through CARFRA, a system being developed by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, attendees at the NAIC’s summer meeting were told.
George Coleman, vice president, government relations and external relations with Prudential, said a term life insurance product was filed on June 14, the first product to go through the CARFRA pipeline.
One of the benefits, according to Coleman, is that a product filing could move through the system in as little as 30-45 days, compared with some filings that can take six months or more to move through the system.
Coleman said a product will need to meet CARFRA standards as well as any state deviations to those standards. It is the hope, he said, that over time, those deviations will be minimized.
MetLife Inc. in New York also publicly expressed its ardent support for the project. Ann Henstrand, vice president-government and industry relations, said the company has offered to run a product that has already been approved through the system to see how the process works.
“This is absolutely the right direction for regulators to go in,” Henstrand said. At this point, MetLife did not have a new product that the system could be tested on, she said. But as more products are added onto the system, she said MetLife would be willing to use one of its filings to test the system. One product the company would like to see added to the project is a group accidental death and disability product, she said.
Frank Fitzgerald, Michigan commissioner of the Office of Financial and Insurance Services, and Diane Koken, Pennsylvania insurance commissioner, said that a list of state differences from the CARFRA system of requirements will offer states a chance to evaluate rules they have on the books, some in place for decades.
It will give state departments “the opportunity to see why rules are the way they are and to determine whether they are still important and necessary,” Koken said. “Lots of times, rules have no purpose anymore. They have been in place for decades.”
“Now that we have the deviations on paper, we can do away with those deviations if they have not added value,” Fitzgerald added.
Once a new CSO Table is adopted by the NAIC and becomes law in the states, the system will see many more filings because there will be product refilings, he added.