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DOL Fiduciary News: April 4, 2017

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State regulators may tackle best-interest standard for annuity sales; Monday, April 03, 2017 11:32 AM ET

Insurance regulators are in preliminary discussions about crafting fiduciary-like annuity sales and advice standards at the state level, according to industry representatives and consumer advocates.

A new group to handle potential enhancements to an existing framework, as well as to develop a possible best-interest standard of care for the sale of annuities, will meet at the spring national conference of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. A panel of industry representatives and consumer advocates is slated to speak at the meeting, according to the conference agenda.

The existing model law is known as the Suitability in Annuity Transactions Model Regulation. States have to adopt by regulation, or pass via the state legislature, the model laws in order for them to become standards.

No Going Back [fiduciary rule]

Financial Advisor; April 2017 print edition

In this new fiduciary era, broker-dealers see their business models experiencing radical transformation as they evolve into robust solution providers for advisors, not simply back offices and technology providers for hire.

And it’s not just the DOL fiduciary rule that’s driving this sea change. Industry executives say the movement to a fiduciary (or similar) standard of care is part of a longer-term trend, regardless of whether the DOL rule goes into effect or whether the SEC ever acts on its own uniform standard of care.

“The industry is really embracing this transition, principally the notion of how to serve clients differently, offer a unique value proposition and emphasize planning over a transaction mind set,” says Jim Crowley, chief relationship officer at Pershing. “That’s the cool thing that’s happening in our business.”

Pacific Life Offers Advisors Resources to Navigate the DOL Fiduciary Rule

NEWPORT BEACH, CA -- (Marketwired -- April 03, 2017) -- To help financial advisors succeed amid changes brought about by the new Department of Labor (DOL) Fiduciary Rule, Pacific Life Insurance Company is releasing a series of educational resources and tools called Thrive with Pacific Life. The first topic in the series, IRA Rollovers, is now available.

Unless a formal announcement is made by the DOL to delay the rule, the Best Interests Standard of the Fiduciary Rule is set to take effect April 10, 2017. Generally, recommendations regarding retirement accounts will now be held to a fiduciary standard. This makes it crucial for advisors to reassess the level of education they provide to clients, the comparative evaluations they perform for clients regarding investment options, and the documentation they maintain to support that the recommendations are in clients' best interests.

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