A federal appeals court in Washington will hear oral arguments May 8 on a suit challenging the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s move to adopt Rule 151A, a regulation that classifies some indexed annuities as securities.

The SEC is calling the annuities “equity indexed annuities.”

The lawyers for the petitioners that filed the suit, American Equity Investment Life Insurance Company, et al, vs. SEC, Number. 09-1021, are calling the products “fixed indexed annuities,” or FIAs.

The petitioners filed their first brief in the case last month, telling the court that, under the plain meaning of a provision of the Securities Exchange Act of 1933, fixed indexed annuities are exempt from SEC regulation.

The court has permitted the National Association of Insurance Commissioners to join the case as a petitioner, and the NAIC also has filed a brief.