The Interstate Insurance Product Regulation Commission has announced its first round of product approvals.
The IIPRC, Washington, a new agency created by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, Kansas City, Mo., has approved a universal life no-lapse secondary guarantee product from Liberty Life Assurance Company, Boston and three adjustable life products from New York Life Insurance and Annuity Corp., New York.
The IIPRC now accepts life insurance product filings for 30 states. The NAIC formed the agency in an effort to make the process of getting approval for new products and forms faster and cheaper.
Preparing the IIPRC filing took about as long as preparing a filing for an individual state, but the “real beauty” of the IIPRC filing is that Liberty Life had to submit just one filing to get approvals from 30 states, according to Stephen Batza, an executive vice president for individual life at Liberty Mutual Group, Boston, Liberty Life’s parent company.
The IIPRC took only 27 days to approve the filing, and staffers had straightforward requests and comments, Batza reports.
The IIPRC asked, for example, that Liberty Life not stamp “private and confidential” on the filing cover letter, because the filing will be open to the public, Batza says.
“There were no major product design issues,” Batza says.
Liberty Life took a “mix and match” approach to the filing, combining forms submitted for IIPRC approval along with forms approved by IIPRC member states.
The IIPRC is allowing a mix-and-match approach to filings until it adopts more standards.
Liberty Mutual has not yet determined how much money it saved by filing the product with the IIPRC, but, in terms of getting the product to market more quickly, “the advantage was huge,” Batza says.
“It is great to see states trying to help the industry get products out to market” and still do their jobs as regulators, Batza adds.
New York Life says filing through the IIPRC helped it get products to market more quickly.
“This new process eliminated the associated research, drafting, filing and system work associated with 24 of the 29 compact states [in which New York Life is licensed] …and resulted in 29 state approvals in less than 30 days,” says Cande Olsen, a New York Life senior vice president.
Getting the 29 approvals without the help of the IIPRC would have taken at least 6 months, Olsen says.