National Conference of Insurance Legislators 2013 Summer Meeting Includes Action On Terrorism Risk Insurance, Unclaimed Property

Jul 16, 2013


At the four-day National Conference of Insurance Legislators’ (“NCOIL”) Summer Meeting in Philadelphia that concluded on July 14, 2013, legislators debated dozens of key insurance-related issues. 

Among other actions, they adopted a resolution urging an extension of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (“TRIA”).  They also enacted a clarifying amendment to an NCOIL unclaimed property model act and re-asserted the need for state action on it.

To view information about the meeting and related materials, click here.

Following are summaries of these actions from NCOIL:


NCOIL Re-Affirms Support for TRIA, Urges Extension

In a resolution adopted by the NCOIL Executive Committee, state lawmakers urged their federal counterparts to extend TRIA, inasmuch as it will expire on December 31, 2014 without further action.

NCOIL President Rep. Charles Curtiss (TN) affirmed the organization’s support saying, “Extending TRIA is of vital importance to the United States economy.  All states are at risk of a terrorist attack.  TRIA’s extension is an important step in protecting America.”

According to resolution sponsor Michael Stinziano, a State Representative from Ohio, “Extension of TRIA is essential for the economic security of the United States.  If TRIA expires, commercial consumers might be unable to afford necessary insurance. I hope that Congress will act as soon as possible to extend TRIA and guarantee the widespread availability of terrorism insurance coverage to our citizens.”

The resolution asserts that the United States continues to be engaged in an ongoing war against terrorism and the threat of future attacks inside the county remains.  Acknowledging that future attacks could include the use of chemical or radiological weapons, resulting in a large number of causalities, the resolution confirms that the lack of private terrorism insurance may require the federal government to cover such losses.  It further states that failure to extend TRIA would likely result in the inability of insurers to offer widespread coverage for future catastrophes resulting from terrorism and negatively impact economic recovery following an attack.


Unclaimed Life Insurance Benefits Model Act Clarified; Continued State Action Urged

NCOIL members took steps this weekend to clarify the scope of the Unclaimed Life Insurance Model Act (“Model”) with NCOIL’s Executive Committee unanimously adopting a technical amendment to it that is intended to facilitate broader adoption by the states.

The amendment clarifies that exempted life insurance plans are those that are part of a federal employee benefit plan or Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) plan, preneed funeral contracts, and credit life or accidental death insurance. As originally written, the model could have been construed as exempting such policies only if they fall under an employee benefit plan.

State Representative Robert Damron (KY), sponsor of the amendment as well as the original model, said “This amendment should clear up any confusion for state legislatures that are considering adopting this model.  As we have seen in the news and otherwise, the issues surrounding unclaimed benefits are as important as ever, so we want to make it as easy as possible for states to understand and enact this legislation.”

Since it was originally adopted in 2011, the Model has been passed in nine states and is pending in two others as of July 2013.

During discussion of the amendment at the NCOIL Life Insurance and Financial Planning Committee meeting on July 11, Representative Damron and other interested parties stressed the need for continued state action on unclaimed life insurance benefits.


NCOIL Offers Best Practices to Curb Opiod Abuse

Legislators at the NCOIL Summer Meeting also advanced guidelines to curb opioid abuse, misuse and diversion that, when finalized, will give states a broad framework for enactment of their own reforms.

The draft NCOIL best practices-which address prescription drug monitoring programs, physician prescribing practices, education and outreach, and treatment and recovery-received strong praise from interested parties.  Click here to view the best practices draft as of July 8, 2013.

According to Workers’ Compensation Insurance Committee Chair, State Representative Bill Botzow of Vermont, who is sponsoring the proposal for discussion, “The proposed best practices are a real opportunity to instruct states looking for thoughtful solutions to a very complex and costly problem and are unique in their comprehensive approach.  We are mindful that opioid abuse affects many different groups-physicians and pharmacists, hospitals, insurers, law enforcement and the court system, public health advocates, treatment and addiction services, Medicare and Medicaid, and others-and that they all must be included in state efforts.

NCOIL’s Workers’ Compensation Insurance Committee will vote on the proposed best practices during a joint session with the Health, Long-Term Care and Health Retirement Issues Committee at NCOIL’s November Annual Meeting in Nashville.  Meanwhile, the Committee will give interested parties a chance to submit any comments or suggestions, as well as to compare the draft guidelines against their states’ current requirements and bring the proposal back to their district attorneys.

Participating in the Committee’s July 12 consideration of the proposal were representatives of the following organizations:

  • American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
  • American Medical Association
  • Coalition Against Insurance Fraud
  • National Council on Compensation Insurance
  • Property-Casualty Association of America

Among other recommendations, the proposed best practices address how to:

  • Establish, evaluate and fund prescription drug monitoring programs
  • Create strong evidence-based prescribing standards that recognize one size does not fit all, and that crack down on “pill mill” pain clinics
  • Promote enhanced and effective education of physicians and the public, including opportunities for safe drug disposal
  • Pursue options for encouraging treatment and recovery, including use of certain drug treatments and of drug courts

Interested parties whose oral and/or written comments since early 2012 contributed to the development of the best practices included:

  • American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine
  • American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
  • American Insurance Association
  • American Medical Association
  • Carnevale Associates LLC (John T. Carnevale, PhD)
  • Coalition Against Insurance Fraud
  • International Association of Industrial Accident Boards & Commissions
  • Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy
  • Kentucky Office of the Governor
  • National Alliance for Model State Drug Laws
  • National Association of Boards of Pharmacy
  • National Association of State Controlled Substances Authorities
  • National Council on Compensation Insurance
  • Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association
  • Property-Casualty Insurers Association of America
  • Work Loss Data Institute


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