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Product Filing Anxiety: Tips and Advice to Make Your Filings Less Painful

Product Filing Anxiety: Tips and Advice to Make Your Filings Less Painful

By Steve Konnath

This session, moderated by Steve Konnath, was well attended with between 50 and 75 attendees. Katie Gurnett, president of the Association of Insurance Compliance Professionals, started off. And before she formally started, she exhibited her high energy and interactive approach by working the crowd and encouraging them to sit at the front of the room. Katie presented a series of best practice product filing approaches. She discussed the unique filing aspects of several different product lines including Annuities (Immediate, Deferred, Indexed and Variable Products), Life (Term and Whole Life as well as type of distribution) and Health (Individual, Group, Health Benefit Plans & Supplemental) Katie concluded her portion by discussing the benefits of SERFF (System for Electronic Rate and Form Filings).

Beth O'Quin, Assistant Director, Policy Forms–Life & Annuity Division of the Louisiana Department of Insurance, presented the regulators perspective for filing products. She provided many generic tips and advice as well as advice specific to the state of Louisiana. Beth shared her perspective that she and her regulators look for ways to approve filings as opposed to finding ways to disapprove filings. Beth also discussed requests for exceptions to statutes. Beth said that if their guidance comes from state law, there can be no exceptions. If the guidance comes from regulations established by the department of insurance, they have some flexibility. In addition to SERFF (mentioned above), Louisiana has its own electronic filing system called CRAFT (Complaint, Rate and Form Tracking). Beth stated that she has no preference about which system is used.

Beth and Katie's presentations were very well received. They had a line of about 12 people waiting for them at the end of their presentations with additional questions. Several people requested follow-up sessions on this topic including tips and advice for the new state compact filing process.