American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI) President and CEO Susan Neely and National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA)-Georgia President Joe Schreck issued the following joint statement on the best interest annuity rule adopted recently by Georgia’s Insurance Department:
“A new rule adopted by Georgia’s Insurance Department and Commissioner John King strengthens protections for Peach State consumers seeking lifetime income from annuities.
“Georgia is the latest state to join the nationwide effort behind stronger consumer protections. It is the 33rd state to implement the ‘best interest of consumer enhancements’ in the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Suitability in Annuity Transactions Model Regulation. These new laws and regulations also align with the SEC’s Regulation Best Interest providing robust consumer protection at the state and federal levels.
“Unlike a fiduciary-only approach, these measures ensure that all savers, particularly financially vulnerable middle-income Americans, can access information about different choices for long-term security in retirement. A recent survey finds that middle-income retirement savers would be very concerned about a regulation keeping them from accessing the professional financial guidance they want and need.
“The U.S. Congress reaffirmed the importance of lifetime income when it passed legislation in 2019 and 2022 that made it easier for employers to include annuities in workplace retirement plans. With these enhanced state and federal consumer protections, savers can be assured that financial professionals must act in the consumer’s best interest when offering recommendations about annuities.