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Insurance Compliance

Insurance Compliance Symposium and Fall Foliage in NH - October 25, 2018

If you’re interested in learning about insurance advertising compliance in the digital era, sharing your challenges, and looking at solutions as a group, join us on THURSDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2018, in Bedford, New Hampshire. We are hosting another one-day Currin Insurance Compliance Symposium and will be exploring some of the unique challenges digital advertising presents compliance professionals and best practices for reviewing content for digital channels.

This day will be full of information with the opportunity to share and discuss your experiences. You will walk away with ways to approach your digital advertising review process, as well as an increased knowledge about how to review ads for the digital channel.

We want to tailor this event to your needs and challenges. We encourage attendees to email questions for discussion in advance to Glenda Bean

SPACE IS LIMITED!

We are intentionally keeping this group small to have real discussions on these important issues. Don’t hesitate...register now and secure your spot. Read more here.

The Bedford Village Inn (BVI) is New England at its finest...where “the beauty of nature blends seamlessly with sophisticated New England style.” BVI is located 10 miles from the Manchester-Boston Regional Airport with complimentary shuttle service to and from. New England is known for its spectacular foliage this time of year so we hope you’re able to stay and enjoy the surrounding area. CICS attendees are eligible for a discounted room rate (Wednesday 10/24 until Sunday 10/28). Attendees are responsible for booking their own transportation and accommodations.

The link below will take you directly to the hotel group reservation page (simply change the dates as needed). If you call the hotel directly for reservations, our group code is: CUR19GB5.

The Grand at Bedford Village Inn Rooms for Currin Compliance.

The Bedford Village Inn
2 Olde Bedford Way
Bedford, NH 03110

Toll-free: 1-800-852-1166
Local: 603- 472-2001

REGISTER NOW

Technology is The Topic at ACLI Legal and Compliance Meeting

Coeur D’Alene, Idaho

As I traveled back from the beautiful city of Coeur D’Alene, Idaho after the ACLI Legal and Compliance Meeting, I was struck by how the topics have changed recently. At this year’s conference, the DOL rule was certainly present as a topic, but not nearly so much in the foreground as it has been in recent years. Technology, on the other hand, was at least part of every session.

Cybersecurity not only had its own session: it also crept into almost all the others in one way or another. Innovation was equally prominent, as the need to innovate made its way into most conversations. Frustrations with the challenges of regulatory efforts to both allow and restrict innovation were also on many lips.

There were no clear solutions to the challenges posed by these issues, but it was clear that internal legal and compliance efforts, as well as regulatory resources, are being pulled and strained by both. It is an interesting and demanding time. So many more meetings and discussions are to be had as we, collectively as an industry, begin to do more than merely identify the issue, but we continue to dig in and do the work.

Off-Topic for a Moment:  Nuclear Regulatory Compliance

Regulatory Insurance Compliance News

As many regular readers know, my father passed away in January after a lengthy battle with Leukemia. He was a nuclear engineer and I knew very little about what he did during my growing up years. I still know very little about what he did, but I do know he was very good at what he did and he was very well respected for what he did. His work was classified. I was raised with the aura of classified information around almost all interactions with my father. Many conversations that seemed innocuous to me turned a corner that led to “I can’t tell you.” It was hard. I think about that often as I listen to all the news around classified information these days. I wonder what my father would have said about it. He was a news junkie and I miss the opportunity to talk to him about all that is going on in today’s national and international politics. But that isn’t what I set out to write about in this post.

I started to write about compliance in the nuclear industry. What? I know. Off topic. I know nothing about the regulation of the nuclear industry, only that it is an industry that I assume is very highly regulated.

Since my father’s death, his mail has been forwarded to my house. Most of what comes is junk mail – now I get his in addition to my own. But also forwarded is his subscription to the trade publication Nuclear News. It comes wrapped in transparent plastic, so I see what it is and I have generally not opened it. But one recent issue caught my attention: Buyer’s Guide 2017. Really? People shop for nuclear supplies from a magazine’s buyer’s guide? Maybe the industry is not so regulated after all. I ripped open the plastic.

The magazine explains it as follows:

This section, beginning on page 35, lists in alphabetical order the various categories of products, materials, and services that are used in the nuclear industry. Exactly 472 categories are given, each with the names of suppliers offering that item.

Advertisers are noted and their entries appear in magenta with the page number on which their ad can be found. All very convenient for the nuclear shopper. 

I decided to test the system. Maybe I did get a little something from my father – he was notorious for his tough but fair design reviews. So, I looked up compliance. The index had a listing for compliance (Compliance Support, Regulatory) and a reference to consultants. The entry for consultants offered no additional guidance, so I noted the code for consultants and flipped to the page where the listings began. Not many consultants advertise in Nuclear News. And not many consultants appear to be primarily regulatory compliance consultants. Most appear to be engineering consultants who advertise, among other skills and qualifications, that they know how to comply with regulatory requirements.

My little diversion into the world of nuclear regulatory compliance was not all that satisfactory. Nor was my experience with the Nuclear News Buyers’ Guide 2017. Perhaps one needs an in-depth understanding of the regulated industry to make sense of such a thing.

Ten years into my business of regulatory compliance for the life insurance industry confirms that a niche is a pretty sweet thing to have. Know the industry you serve, know it well, maintain strong relationships and do the right thing. I think that probably works whether the industry is nuclear power or life insurance. I will stick with life insurance – I am ready to put the Nuclear News Buyers’ Guide 2017 in the recycling bin. I probably won’t open the next issue. 

Compliance Metaphors: Options Abound, But I Want More

I once heard someone describe compliance as similar to the plumbing in a house – it’s not glamorous and functions behind the scenes, but it’s necessary – and when things break down, it stinks. I’ve heard many compliance metaphors, and when I first heard this one, I thought it was totally spot on. Many metaphors used to describe compliance centered around this theme. Compliance is necessary, but no one really likes it. And while I still enjoy the compliance-as-plumbing description (it certainly hits home when compliance breaks down), I think we can do better. 

I don’t want to settle on compliance being pigeon-holed as the un-glamorous, behind-the-scenes “necessary evil” that companies and agents have to deal with. Does it need to be front-and-center like the new central AC system that is totally wonderful, but not necessary? No, but I personally feel that if we’re able to stop thinking of compliance as a solely mandated function and instead push ourselves to see it as another business tool to leverage, not only can a company’s internal operational flow improve, so can the business bottom line. 

Why? 

Reputation. Our world is increasingly digitized with so much information instantly at our fingertips. Bad reviews or press? Easy to find it. Our attention span is decreasing. First impressions are everything, and if you do get additional time to impress someone, count yourself lucky. Embracing a pro-compliance attitude, including compliance as part of the businesses culture, demonstrating a commitment to compliance in all business areas of a company, and having conversations internally and externally about this commitment can set you apart from the pack, and build your reputation. 

Compliance is a form of risk management, just like the products sold in the insurance industry. Use compliance to mitigate risks and build your company’s reputation. Move it from behind-the-scenes, and start using this tool to propel your company ahead. Tell us, is compliance the plumbing in your company? What’s your favorite metaphor for compliance?