The New York State Insurance Department has scheduled a series of 4 public hearings on annuity and life insurance sales suitability issues.

The department will be looking at whether current state regulations do enough to ensure that the particular products that individual consumers buy are the right products for those consumers, officials say.

New York now has no regulatory or statutory ban on unsuitable sales, officials report.

Instead, New York simply requires that sellers of insurance and annuity products provide specified disclosures and product comparison information.

New York regulators want to hear comments about whether they should draw on the current annuity suitability model developed by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, Kansas City, Mo.; a new suitability model now under development by the NAIC; or the annuity suitability rules developed by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.

“The hearings will also explore if any new regulation should apply to all life insurance and annuity sales or just a certain portion,” officials say.

The hearings will start Aug. 6 in Buffalo, N.Y., and conclude Sept. 16 in New York City.

More information about the hearings is available here.