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Insurance Trade Groups Oppose New Consumer Agency

The Obama administration’s plan to create a Consumer Financial Protection Agency as a key part of its financial services overhaul is facing new opponents from the insurance industry. Thirteen of the major insurance industry associations, including the American Insurance Association, the Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers, and the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America sent a letter Wednesday afternoon to the chairmen and ranking members of the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs and the House Financial Services committees urging Congress to exclude insurance from the CFPA.The trade associations believe that existing consumer protections already apply to insurers and that the legislative language needs to be changed because the current version of the legislation encompasses mortgage, title and credit insurance. “Despite the clear, logical intent to separate out insurance, the scope of financial activity’ contained within the proposal nonetheless includes mortgage, title and credit insurance,— the groups wrote. “A distinct possibility also exists that other forms of insurance could be swept under the CFPA’s jurisdiction, to the extent one is deemed a financial advisor’ providing financial or other related advisory services’ or tax planning’ services,— the groups said in their letter.

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