(Extensions of Remarks - May 23, 2013)

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[Extensions of Remarks]
[Pages E758-E759]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []



                        HON. STEPHEN LEE FINCHER

                              of tennessee

                    in the house of representatives

                         Thursday, May 23, 2013

  Mr. FINCHER. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to introduce the Claims 
Licensing Advancement for Interstate Matters Act, known as the CLAIM 
Act to help consumers save mil1ions of dollars in insurance costs and 
create more jobs.
  Under current law, independent claims adjusters face a hodgepodge of 
inconsistent state regulations that only serve to delay the prompt 
adjustment of claims for natural disasters, car accident victims, and 
other tragedies in life. Independent claims adjusters must take a 
license examination in each state in which they work. This requires 
adjusters to take time off from their job and travel to each state in 
which they seek a license. This is a costly burden on the claims 
adjusters, the companies that employ them, and ultimately, the 
consumer. Sadly, it is the consumer who currently pays for these costs 
in higher premiums.
  Today, it is my pleasure to re-introduce a bill that would end this 
costly burden. The CLAIM Act would lead to a process that would provide 
independent claims adjusters licensing reciprocity so their home-state 
license is valid in any other state.
  The CLAIM Act would also provide specific relief during a natural 
disaster. In areas designated by the President of the United States as 
a ``Disaster Area,'' independent claims adjusters who meet certain 
criteria would be eligible to adjust claims for losses notwithstanding 
the state where the adjuster is licensed.
  To be clear, the CLAIM Act does not create a new federal law and does 
not ``federalize'' the insurance industry. The CLAIM Act respects 
states' rights to continue to regulate insurance. Rather, the CLAIM Act 
would urge the National Association of Insurance Commissioners to adopt 
a model licensing standard for state regulation for independent claims 
adjusters that each individual state would adopt. The CLAIM Act would 
make sure that

[[Page E759]]

each state keeps its independence to adopt rules as they see fit and 
recognizes that state insurance regulators are best situated to address 
insurance licensing standards.
  In the 112th Congress, I sponsored H.R. 6415, the CLAIM Act, a bill 
very similar to what I am introducing today. After working with 
stakeholders, I added a new Section 4 that clarifies the CLAIM Act will 
not interfere with State insurance regulation. I made this change at 
the request of State insurance regulators who felt the previous bill 
did not go far enough to protect State insurance regulation. Mr. 
Speaker, I am confident the CLAIM Act will further protect the State 
insurance industry and regulation.
  The goal of this bill is to streamline the claims adjustment process 
so that individual claims adjusters can respond in the fastest possible 
and most cost-effective manner possible. I look forward to further 
discussing the issues of uniformity and reciprocity and the CLAIM Act 
as we move forward in the Committee process.