Regulatory efforts to streamline criminal background checks have some industry representatives objecting to the system of fingerprinting producers and others.[@@]

The new model act, sponsored by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, Kansas City. Mo., aims for states to gain access to FBI criminal records and help weed out potential rogue producers.

In addition, it would allow states to use a central repository for fingerprint information, which now exists as the National Insurance Producer Registry under the aegis of the NAIC.

The model act could receive NAIC approval by the end of the year.

However, some industry representatives feel portions of the model act may be premature until the technology is in place for universal electronic fingerprinting.

Lenore Marema, vice president of the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America, Des Plaines, Ill., says her organization objected to the provision requiring commissioners to mandate a full set of fingerprints from each producer applicant.

“We think the NAIC is putting the cart before the horse in setting forth, in Section 4, all of the persons and circumstances under which states will require fingerprints, and a criminal background check, prior to the time that the NAIC has a fully operational central repository for digital fingerprints to coordinate that process,” she says.

Marema also objects to language in the model that could be interpreted to require criminal background checks and fingerprinting of company officers where there is a request for an additional line of authority.

The National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors, Washington, supports the current model with a number of provisos. The most important of these is that the model act not allow for fingerprinting nonresident license applicants.

In a statement, William Anderson, NAIFA senior vice president to the NAIC Fingerprint Subgroup of the Producer licensing Working Group, said, “Where a resident state conducts a background check, including obtaining and vetting fingerprints, there is no reason for a nonresident state to duplicate the process in connection with the same producer.”