DOL Fiduciary Rule Back in Play as Industry Preps for PTE 2020-02

New federal regulations for retirement advisers may not last long.

Though the US Department of Labor’s exemption for investment advice fiduciaries has taken effect as planned and is expected to be enforced in December as scheduled, the agency has since signaled its intent to revisit its fiduciary regulation on a broader scale.

The DOL recently announced its intent to amend the definition of the term “fiduciary” by including it as an item on its spring regulatory agenda. The agency revised the definition previously but it did not stick because a federal court vacated the DOL fiduciary rule that contained the change.

“Though firms and advisers need to educate themselves on the new prohibited transaction exemptions, they also should know that additional changes could come,” said Brandi Brown, senior vice president of regulatory affairs for RegEd. “The DOL still wants to redefine the term ‘fiduciary’ and any efforts to do so could impact retirement advisers.”

In releasing its most recent regulatory agenda, the DOL’s Employee Benefits Security Administration noted that its rulemaking would amend the regulatory definition of the term fiduciary “to more appropriately define when persons who render investment advice for a fee to employee benefit plans and IRAs are fiduciaries.” 

The EBSA also stated, “The amendment would take into account practices of investment advisers, and the expectations of plan officials and participants, and IRA owners who receive investment advice, as well as developments in the investment marketplace, including in the ways advisers are compensated that can subject advisers to harmful conflicts of interest. “

Previous attempts to protect investors

The DOL, through the EBSA, wants to prevent advisers from profiting at clients’ expense by holding more advisers to a fiduciary standard. It could curb certain types of advisers’ compensation while increasing compliance obligations for them and their firms in doing so.

The DOL previously broadened the definition of a “fiduciary” in a 2016 rule. At that time, the DOL redefined a “fiduciary” under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) to include any person who receives a fee or other compensation for investment advice or recommendations for employee benefit plans or individual retirement accounts.

Regulators created the fiduciary rule to ensure that retirement advisers would put investors first, noting that adviser conflicts could cost IRA investors $410 billion over 10 years as an example of the need to protect clients.

However, financial services firms and business groups pushed back, delaying the rule’s implementation date from April 2017 to July 2019. Ultimately, it never took effect because a federal court vacated the DOL fiduciary rule in March 2018, citing its “unreasonableness.”

In doing so, the court also eliminated two new prohibited transaction class exemptions — the Best Interest Contract Exemption and the Class Exemption for Principal Transactions in Certain Assets Between Investment Advice Fiduciaries and Employee Benefit Plans and IRAs — that had been included with the fiduciary rule, along with amendments to several pre-existing prohibited transaction class exemptions.

After the court ruled, the DOL enacted a temporary enforcement policy under which it would not pursue prohibited transactions claims against investment advice fiduciaries who worked diligently and in good faith to comply with Impartial Conduct Standards for transactions that would have been exempted under the new exemptions, per Field Assistance Bulletin 2018-02. Nor would the DOL treat the fiduciaries as violating the applicable prohibited transaction rules.

New prohibited transaction exemption

The DOL has since gone further, granting a new prohibited transaction class exemption for investment advice fiduciaries giving advice to employer retirement plans, IRAs, or holders of either type of account, publishing Improving Investment Advice for Workers & Retirees (Prohibited Transaction Exemption 2020-02) in the Federal Register in July 2020.

Applicable to registered investment advisers, broker-dealers, insurers, banks, and their investment professionals, PTE 2020-02 requires fiduciary investment advice to meet “Impartial Conduct Standards” that include the requirement to act in the best interest of the client, to receive no more than reasonable compensation, as well as a requirement to make no materially misleading statements about recommended investment transactions and other relevant matters. PTE 2020-02 also includes protective conditions requiring disclosure to retirement investors, conflict mitigation, and a retrospective compliance review.

Retirement advisers may be compensated for fiduciary investment advice that meets the standards of PTE 2020-02, including for recommendations to roll over assets from an employee benefit plan to an IRA. However, some advisers have stopped giving rollover advice due to the DOL rule’s complexities.

Renewal of the five-part test

PTE 2020-02’s preamble includes an interpretation of when the advice to roll over employee-benefit-plan assets to an IRA would be considered fiduciary investment advice. In it, the DOL acknowledges that neither “a single instance of advice” to roll over plan assets nor “sporadic interactions between a financial services professional and a retirement investor” would be enough to apply a fiduciary standard.

 “However, advice to roll over plan assets can also occur as part of an ongoing relationship or an intended ongoing relationship that an individual enjoys with his or her investment advice provider,” the DOL noted. “In circumstances in which the investment advice provider has been giving advice to the individual about investing in, purchasing, or selling securities or other financial instruments through tax-advantaged retirement vehicles,” the advice to roll over assets could cause the fiduciary standard to be applied under the regular-basis prong of the Five-Part Test for Status as an Investment Advice Fiduciary.

Adopted in 1975, the five-part test had been eliminated in the DOL fiduciary rule that was vacated in 2018. But the test remains relevant due to the court’s decision.

Under the five-part test, a financial institution or investment professional is an investment advice fiduciary if they receive a fee or other compensation when they:

  1. “Render advice to the plan as to the value of securities or other property, or make recommendations as to the advisability of investing in, purchasing, or selling securities or other property,
  2. On a regular basis,
  3. Pursuant to a mutual agreement, arrangement, or understanding with the plan, plan fiduciary or IRA owner, that
  4. The advice will serve as a primary basis for investment decisions with respect to plan or IRA assets, and that
  5. The advice will be individualized based on the particular needs of the plan or IRA.”

In explaining its final interpretation on rollover advice in PTE 2020-02, the DOL stated, “financial institutions and investment professionals who meet the five-part test and are investment advice fiduciaries relying on this exemption should clearly disclose their fiduciary status to their Retirement Investor customers.”

Revisiting the definition of “fiduciary”

Though PTE 2020-02 took effect in February, regulators do not plan to enforce it until December. The temporary enforcement policy stated in Field Assistance Bulletin 2018-02 will remain in place until Dec. 20, 2021.

The DOL also plans to begin rulemaking to amend the regulatory definition of “fiduciary” by December as well. In doing so, it will evaluate prohibited transaction class exemptions and consider proposing amendments or new exemptions “to ensure consistent protection of employee benefit plan and IRA investors” as part of its rulemaking as well.

Any fiduciary rule that the DOL proposes would not be finalized until at least 2023, and another fight may be brewing in the interim, but the agency seems committed to expanding the fiduciary standard for retirement advisers as it seeks to protect investors further.

“Retirement advisers still have time to prepare for PTE 2020-02 but its complexities require that they start soon if they haven’t already,” RegEd’s Brown said. “They also should expect the DOL to address additional issues as they redefine ‘fiduciary’ and be prepared to learn about any new requirements that may result.”

Visit our website to learn more about RegEd’s Insurance CE solution, or Firm Element Training to learn more about continuing education (CE) courses for insurance professionals and broker-dealers.

About RegEd

RegEd is the market-leading provider of RegTech enterprise solutions with relationships with more than 200 enterprise clients, including 80% of the top 25 financial services firms.

Established in 2000 by former regulators, the company is recognized for continuous regulatory technology innovation with solutions hallmarked by workflow-directed processes, data integration, regulatory intelligence, automated validations, business process automation, and compliance dashboards. The aggregate drives the highest levels of operational efficiency and enables our clients to cost-effectively comply with regulations and continuously mitigate risk.

Trusted by the nation’s top financial services firms, RegEd’s proven, holistic approach to RegTech meets firms where they are on the compliance and risk management continuum, scaling as their needs evolve and amplifying the value proposition delivered to clients. For more information, please schedule a consultation.

RegEd Sponsors FSI OneVoice 2021

RegEd, the leading provider of compliance technology solutions to broker-dealers and other financial services firms, will be a sponsor and exhibitor at the Financial Services Institute (FSI) OneVoice conference, which will be held in Orlando, Fla., and virtually, from July 26-28.

The FSI OneVoice 2021 conference is an educational forum for independent financial services firm executives. Attendees will learn critical insights on the most important issues affecting their businesses as they move forward in a post-Covid-19 world.

This year’s conference will include general sessions on navigating the recovery, diversity and inclusion, and the future economy. It also will have concurrent sessions on topics related to compliance, supervision, operations, and technology. Presenters and panelists will include regulators, senior executives from leading financial services firms, and industry subject-matter experts.

As an exhibitor and sponsor, RegEd will showcase enterprise solutions that enable firms to ensure a culture of compliance in today’s rapidly evolving regulatory environment.

Branch Audit Management: Enables firms to fully plan, schedule, conduct, resolve and report on branch audits. Streamlines the audit process and improves the efficiency of the firm’s audit program.

Gifts, Gratuities, and Contributions Management: Expanded capabilities enable global enterprise gifts and entertainment tracking and management, including automated contact management, threshold tracking, and automated alerts.

Enterprise Advertising Review: Provides a workflow-driven process to streamline advertising and customer communication submission, review, collaboration, and approval, speeding time to market for review items.

Registration and OBA: Streamlines registration compliance across the enterprise, including end-to-end OBA tracking and reporting. Integrations automate the filing and reconciliation of amendments and background investigations.

RegEd representatives will be available to meet with conference attendees to understand their compliance challenges and discuss solutions that help broker-dealers and other financial services firms to meet compliance requirements and proactively manage their compliance programs.

For more information on RegEd or its attendance at the FSI OneVoice conference, please call 800-334-8322 or email sales@reged.com.

About RegEd

RegEd is the market-leading provider of RegTech enterprise solutions with relationships with more than 200 enterprise clients, including 80% of the top 25 financial services firms.

Established in 2000 by former regulators, the company is recognized for continuous regulatory technology innovation with solutions hallmarked by workflow-directed processes, data integration, regulatory intelligence, automated validations, business process automation, and compliance dashboards. The aggregate drives the highest levels of operational efficiency and enables our clients to cost-effectively comply with regulations and continuously mitigate risk.

Trusted by the nation’s top financial services firms, RegEd’s proven, holistic approach to RegTech meets firms where they are on the compliance and risk management continuum, scaling as their needs evolve and amplifying the value proposition delivered to clients. For more information, please schedule a consultation.

RegEd will Present Enterprise Compliance Solutions for Banks at the ABA Regulatory Compliance Conference

RegEd will showcase its enterprise compliance platform for banks at the American Bankers Association’s Regulatory Compliance Conference, which will be held virtually from June 22-24.

The National Conversation on Compliance will provide participants with in-depth regulatory analysis, benchmarking data from across the industry, and practical implementation strategies for current compliance challenges.

The ABA Regulatory Compliance Conference includes sessions on timely topics such as:

  • Leading Practices in Assessing and Mitigating UDAAP Risk
  • Reviewing Your Compliance Policies and Procedures for the New Environment
  • Customer Communications Compliance
  • Navigating Virtual Examinations
  • The Future of Regulation

The conference will also include a virtual marketplace with exhibits from conference sponsors such as RegEd. RegEd representatives will highlight the company’s integrated, fit-for-purpose enterprise compliance solutions for banks, including the following.

  • Marketing and Advertising Review Management: Streamlines the end-to-end process for marketing and advertising communication submission, review, collaboration and approval, speeding time to market for review items.
  • Branch Audit Management: Enables banks to fully plan, schedule, conduct, resolve, and report on bank audits. The solution is fully configurable to reflect a bank’s specific organizational hierarchy and business processes.
  • Conflict of Interest Management: Including Gifts and Gratuities, Outside Business Activities, and Personal Securities Accounts. Capture full audit trails of requests, approvals, exceptions, attestations, and documentation. 
  • Policies and Procedures Management: Enables administration and oversight of the bank’s policies and procedures, including approval, distribution, attestation management, and testing program management.

Schedule a consultation to learn more about how RegEd’s fit-for-purpose enterprise compliance solutions enable banks to gain the effective oversight that they need to ensure that compliance obligations are fulfilled, compliance gaps are readily identified and remediated, and strong audit trails that demonstrate compliance are captured and memorialized.

About RegEd

RegEd is the market-leading provider of RegTech enterprise solutions with relationships with more than 200 enterprise clients, including 80% of the top 25 financial services firms.

Established in 2000 by former regulators, the company is recognized for continuous regulatory technology innovation with solutions hallmarked by workflow-directed processes, data integration, regulatory intelligence, automated validations, business process automation, and compliance dashboards. The aggregate drives the highest levels of operational efficiency and enables our clients to cost-effectively comply with regulations and continuously mitigate risk.

Trusted by the nation’s top financial services firms, RegEd’s proven, holistic approach to RegTech meets firms where they are on the compliance and risk management continuum, scaling as their needs evolve and amplifying the value proposition delivered to clients. For more information, please schedule a consultation.

RegEd’s Margaret Bragg Elected to SILA Foundation Board of Trustees

RegEd Senior Vice President Sales Margaret Bragg has been elected to the SILA Foundation Board as the new Compliance Trustee. As Compliance Trustee, Bragg will help ensure that the Foundation complies with its rules and bylaws.

As the charitable arm of the Securities & Insurance Licensing Association (SILA), one of the SILA Foundation’s missions is to identify students who are aspiring to work in the financial services industry with financial assistance with their education by distributing 10 scholarships of $1,000 each to college students annually. It also supports the onboarding and continued education of financial services industry professionals through the SILA Foundation Certification Program.

Prior to becoming a trustee, Bragg began assisting the Foundation more than a year ago as a volunteer on the Scholarship & Grants Committee, which considers applications for students focused on careers in the insurance and securities industry.

Bragg’s experience with her and her husband’s scholarship program that awards scholarships for high school students from her hometown drew her to the opportunity to support the SILA Foundation in its efforts. Having seen how her local students benefited from the Bragg scholarship program throughout her 11-year involvement, Bragg appreciated the chance to help make a similar impact through the SILA Foundation.

“This group is doing yeoman’s work in trying to positively affect the lives of individuals,” she said of the Foundation’s work. “That resonated with what was already an important piece of my life.”

In addition to its scholarship program, the Foundation runs the Footprint Project, in which it gives $1,000 a year to an organization whose mission is to enhance the personal careers and/or general wellbeing of people located in the city that hosts the annual SILA National Education Conference. And, as an educational forum that helps the public learn about financial services, particularly insurance and securities, the SILA Foundation’s efforts include educational content, online course, virtual classes, free public webinars and career development assistance as well.

Bragg will remain on the SILA Foundation’s scholarship review committee while she also serves on the board of trustees and addresses compliance for the organization. She is now one of two RegEd executives on the Foundation’s board of trustees.

Susan Boles, senior regulatory compliance analyst at RegEd, was elected to the SILA Foundation Board in early 2020 as the new Scholarships & Grants Trustee. As the Scholarships & Grants Trustee, Boles oversees all of the scholarships and grants given by the SILA Foundation.

Also, Brandi Brown, senior vice president of regulatory affairs at RegEd, is co-chair of the SILA Education and Training Subgroup (SETS). SETS provides a forum for SILA Members to address issues related to education and training requirements for producers, adjusters, and registered representatives.

To learn more about the SILA Foundation, please visit http://www.silafoundation.org/.

About RegEd

RegEd is the market-leading provider of RegTech enterprise solutions with relationships with more than 200 enterprise clients, including 80% of the top 25 financial services firms.

Established in 2000 by former regulators, the company is recognized for continuous regulatory technology innovation with solutions hallmarked by workflow-directed processes, data integration, regulatory intelligence, automated validations, business process automation, and compliance dashboards. The aggregate drives the highest levels of operational efficiency and enables our clients to cost-effectively comply with regulations and continuously mitigate risk.

Trusted by the nation’s top financial services firms, RegEd’s proven, holistic approach to RegTech meets firms where they are on the compliance and risk management continuum, scaling as their needs evolve and amplifying the value proposition delivered to clients. For more information, please schedule a consultation.

RegEd Appoints Adam Schaub as Vice President of Platform Product Management

RegEd, the market-leading provider of enterprise regulatory compliance solutions to banks, broker-dealers, insurance companies and brokers, is pleased to announce its appointment of Adam Schaub to the role of Vice President, Platform Product Management. In this role, Schaub will direct RegEd’s platform product management team and lead the strategy and vision for the continuous evolution of RegEd’s enterprise platform.

“Adam comes to RegEd with deep industry, regulatory and compliance subject matter expertise. He has over 20 years of direct experience in the financial services compliance industry, and was a RegEd client leading the compliance services team at his last role, “ said Ethan Floyd, Chief Product Officer at RegEd. “We are very excited to have Adam join our team, he has strong knowledge of our platform solutions and the industry which make him invaluable to RegEd in our growth initiatives.”

Adam joins RegEd from Avantax, formerly known as 1st Global, where he led the Compliance Services team, which was responsible for CE, branch inspections, advertising, outside business activities, outside brokerage accounts, regulatory requests, licensing, and many other compliance areas. As Vice President of Product Management Platform, Adam will collaborate cross-functionally to identify opportunities for new products and lead strategic initiatives.

John M. Schobel, CEO & Founder of RegEd, commented on the appointment, “Adam’s extensive knowledge of our software and the financial services industry as a whole makes him an exceptional addition to our team. His decision to join RegEd at this point in our growth speaks volumes about the exciting trajectory that we’re on.”

About RegEd

RegEd is the market-leading provider of RegTech enterprise solutions with relationships with more than 200 enterprise clients, including 80% of the top 25 financial services firms.

Established in 2000 by former regulators, the company is recognized for continuous regulatory technology innovation with solutions hallmarked by workflow-directed processes, data integration, regulatory intelligence, automated validations, business process automation and compliance dashboards. The aggregate drives the highest levels of operational efficiency and enables our clients to cost-effectively comply with regulations and continuously mitigate risk.

Trusted by the nation’s top financial services firms, RegEd’s proven, holistic approach to RegTech meets firms where they are on the compliance and risk management continuum, scaling as their needs evolve and amplifying the value proposition delivered to clients. For more information, please visit www.reged.com.

RegEd Appoints Chris Heggelund as Chief Client Officer

RegEd, the market-leading provider of enterprise regulatory compliance solutions to banks, broker-dealers, insurance companies and brokers, is pleased to announce its appointment of Chris Heggelund to the role of Chief Client Officer (CCO). In this role, Heggelund will direct RegEd’s Implementation, Customer Success and ongoing Customer Support functions to drive continuous client satisfaction, and meet and exceed growth objectives.

“Chris is an industry veteran who has spent the last twenty years in the InsureTech space, with the last decade building world-class services organizations.  He brings a deep understanding of insurance licensing and securities regulation, technology and customer success best practices to RegEd,” said John M. Schobel, RegEd CEO and Founder. “His proven ability to execute strategies that deliver best-in-class customer service will help ensure RegEd’s continued success.”

Heggelund is a highly accomplished business leader with significant experience in leading client services organizations through transformation focused on client onboarding, relationship management and customer success to deliver consistent revenue growth and client satisfaction. In his prior career Chris held senior leadership positions in large U.S. and multi-national corporations focused on software solutions for the insurance vertical, responsible for leading and maturing their professional services, customer support, solution architecture, managed services and customer success functions.

“I’m thrilled that Chris has joined RegEd at this exciting point in our growth,” continued Schobel. “He’s a strong addition to our executive team and I’m confident that he’ll make material contributions to RegEd’s future.”

About RegEd

RegEd is the market-leading provider of RegTech enterprise solutions with relationships with more than 200 enterprise clients, including 80% of the top 25 financial services firms.

Established in 2000 by former regulators, the company is recognized for continuous regulatory technology innovation with solutions hallmarked by workflow-directed processes, data integration, regulatory intelligence, automated validations, business process automation and compliance dashboards. The aggregate drives the highest levels of operational efficiency and enables our clients to cost-effectively comply with regulations and continuously mitigate risk.

Trusted by the nation’s top financial services firms, RegEd’s proven, holistic approach to RegTech meets firms where they are on the compliance and risk management continuum, scaling as their needs evolve and amplifying the value proposition delivered to clients. For more information, please visit www.reged.com.

RegEd Completes Acquisition of ComplianceMAX and FIRE Continuing Education businesses from National Regulatory Services (NRS)

Acquisition expands RegEd’s market presence with broker-dealers, insurance companies and investment advisors.

RegEd, the leading provider of compliance, education, training and regulatory management solutions and services for insurance companies, broker-dealers, banks, and other financial services companies, today announced that it has completed the acquisition of ComplianceMAX and FIRE Continuing Education businesses from National Regulatory Services (NRS), a provider of compliance and registration products and services for investment advisers, broker-dealers, hedge funds, investment companies and insurance institutions. These additions will expand RegEd’s capabilities and meet the needs of the broker-dealer industry so they can be compliant with FINRA and SEC rules and regulations. NRS is owned by Accuity, part of RELX. The acquisition is expected to close on January 8, 2021.

RegEd’s enterprise technology solutions, representing the broadest compliance management and credentialing portfolio in the industry, have evolved across hundreds of implementations to deliver the most robust functional capabilities, a singular user experience and the ready ability to scale to meet client needs as they evolve.  With the acquisition of ComplianceMAX and FIRE Continuing Education, RegEd strengthens its position in compliance management solutions that serve the financial services industry and further builds on its market and compliance expertise.

“We are very excited to welcome the employees of ComplianceMAX and FIRE Continuing Education to RegEd,” said John M. Schobel, CEO and Founder of RegEd. “This acquisition combines the strengths of these two businesses in a unique, strategic fit with RegEd and further enables RegEd in its mission to provide market-leading compliance, education and training solutions to the industry.”  Schobel continued, “ComplianceMAX and FIRE Continuing Education have served financial services firms, including some of the nation’s largest broker-dealers, for more than 20 years, and we are confident that their customers and the market will benefit from the combination with RegEd.”

John Gebauer, NRS President commented, “I am confident that the ComplianceMax and FIRE Continuing Education customers, employees and products will flourish under RegEd and NRS will be in a position to sharpen its focus on the Investment Adviser and Investment Company customer segments.”

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

# # #

MEDIA CONTACT:

Debra Freitag

Debra.Freitag@reged.com

919-653-5200

About RegEd

RegEd is a leading provider of RegTech enterprise solutions with relationships with more than 200 enterprise clients, including 80% of the top 25 financial services firms.

Established in 2000 by former regulators, the company is recognized for continuous regulatory technology innovation with solutions hallmarked by workflow-directed processes, data integration, regulatory intelligence, automated validations, business process automation and compliance dashboards. The aggregate drives the highest levels of operational efficiency and enables our clients to cost-effectively comply with regulations and continuously mitigate risk. Trusted by the nation’s top financial services firms, RegEd’s proven, holistic approach to RegTech meets firms where they are on the compliance and risk management continuum, scaling as their needs evolve and amplifying the value proposition delivered to clients. For more information, please visit www.reged.com.

About National Regulatory Services

Owned by RELXNational Regulatory Services (NRS) is part of Accuity, the leading global provider of financial crime screening, payments and counterparty know your customer (KYC) solutions. NRS is the US leader in compliance and registration products and services for investment advisers, broker-dealers, hedge funds, investment companies and insurance institutions. NRS has the practical expertise, proven capability and unparalleled reach to deliver integrated and effective compliance solutions to a wide range of users within the financial services industry. NRS delivers these solutions through three interrelated offerings – comprehensive education, best-in-class technology and expert consulting services – enabling our clients to meet their regulatory requirements and minimize risk.

About Accuity

Accuity powers compliant and assured client transactions to help build an interconnected and trusted financial ecosystem. Our financial crime screening, payment services, and benefits compliance solutions help enable financial inclusion while identifying criminal activity and fraudulent players. With deep expertise and industry-leading data and analytics solutions from the Firco and Bankers Almanac brands, Accuity provides unmatched confidence, efficiency and compliance for customers around the world. Part of RELX, a global provider of information and analytics for professional and business customers across industries, Accuity has been delivering solutions to banks and businesses worldwide for 180 years.

About RELX

RELX is a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers. The group serves customers in more than 180 countries and has offices in about 40 countries. It employs over 33,000 people, of whom almost half are in North America. The shares of RELX PLC, the parent company, are traded on the London, Amsterdam and New York Stock Exchanges using the following ticker symbols: London: REL; Amsterdam: REN; New York: RELX. The market capitalisation is approximately £35.3bn | €39bn | $47.9bn.

RegEd and AICP Host Joint Webinar on Best Practices in Regulatory Change Management

The session provided a snapshot of regulation in the financial services industry, including the impact of COVID-19, and outlined hands-on best practices for ensuring effective compliance.

RegEd, the leading provider of compliance technology solutions for the financial services industry, recently presented a webinar Regulatory Change Management: The State of Insurance Regulation and Compliance Best Practices in a Pandemic World. The webinar was co-hosted with The Association of Insurance Compliance Professionals (AICP), an organization offering the insurance industry compliance and ethics education, training, and opportunities to engage with industry experts and regulatory authorities.

Regulatory Change Management: The State of Insurance Regulation and Compliance Best Practices in a Pandemic World

Regulation of the insurance industry has been significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, resulting in an escalating rate of new and changed rules and regulations, building on the trajectory of recent years. Regulators, including state and federal entities, continue to expect insurers to administer effective programs for monitoring, tracking and implementing new and changed regulations amid the pandemic.

This presentation featured an expert panel including Merlinda Johnson, FLMI, ACS, Director of Insurance Regulatory Compliance at RegEd; Margie Webber, Director of Regulatory Compliance BD/IA at RegEd; De Keimach, ALMI, ACS, AAPA, AIRC, Director of Compliance at Delaware Life Insurance Company; and Debra Freitag, Chief Strategy Officer at RegEd. Panelists provided an overview of the regulatory landscape, including the influence that the pandemic has had on the volume and nature of regulation, and delivered a case study on the ways one leading insurer is applying technology and process best practices to streamline regulatory compliance.

“The pandemic has exacerbated trends that have been ongoing for years, as the avalanche of regulatory information that inundates insurers has continued to grow. As a result, a workflow-enabled, closed loop process for managing regulatory change has become more important than ever,” stated Debra Freitag, Chief Strategy Officer at RegEd. “As a longtime supporter, we value the important work that AICP does for the industry, and we appreciated the opportunity to present this session to their membership.”

A recording of the webinar is available to view here.

About RegEd

RegEd is the market-leading provider of RegTech enterprise solutions with relationships with more than 200 enterprise clients, including 80% of the top 25 financial services firms.

Established in 2000 by former regulators, the company is recognized for continuous regulatory technology innovation with solutions hallmarked by workflow-directed processes, data integration, regulatory intelligence, automated validations, business process automation and compliance dashboards. The aggregate drives the highest levels of operational efficiency and enables our clients to cost-effectively comply with regulations and continuously mitigate risk.

Trusted by the nation’s top financial services firms, RegEd’s proven, holistic approach to RegTech meets firms where they are on the compliance and risk management continuum, scaling as their needs evolve and amplifying the value proposition delivered to clients. For more information, please visit www.reged.com.

About The Association of Insurance Compliance Professionals® (AICP)

The Association of Insurance Compliance Professionals® (AICP) offers the insurance industry exceptional compliance and ethics education, training, and opportunities to engage with industry experts and regulatory authorities. AICP has earned a reputation for some of the best educational programming available to novice and experienced compliance individuals. With 9 Association Chapters supplementing the work of the national organization, our members are comprised of personnel from property, casualty, life, annuities and health insurers, regulatory agencies, consultants and product & service providers.

Celent Report on Employee Conduct and Conflicts of Interest in the Financial Services Industry Published

Commissioned by RegEd, the report identifies processes and technology best practices that leading firms employ to reduce risk in today’s environment.

RegEd, the market-leading provider of enterprise compliance solutions to banks, broker-dealers insurance companies, and other financial services firms, is pleased to announce the publication of a new analyst report, “Keeping a Grip on Employee Conduct and Conflicts of Interest,” from research and consulting company Celent.

The report, authored by Neil Katkov, PhD, Head of Risk and Compliance at Celent, provides an overview of the current landscape surrounding employee conduct and conflicts of interest management, as well as the best practices, processes and technology that firms can leverage to optimize compliance and reduce risk.

“Among the greatest challenges faced by financial services firms is the ability to readily identify potential risk among the firm’s employee and registered population, before it causes reputational harm,” stated Neil Katkov, PhD, Head of Risk and Compliance at Celent. “To do so, they need to efficiently and accurately capture the actions and relationships of potentially thousands or even tens of thousands of employees, yet many technology systems do not support the relevant functionality.”

RegEd offers a suite of fully integrated conflicts of interest modules, which enable firms to monitor, identify and remedy conflicts of interest and code of conduct issues among the firm’s employee population and third parties. The suite includes robust questionnaires solutions for managing Outside Business Activities; Gifts, Gratuities and Contributions; and Personal Securities Account Management.

“Conflicts of interest continues to be high on the radar of multiple regulators, and we certainly expect that to continue,” commented John M. Schobel, CEO & Founder of RegEd. “RegEd Conflicts of Interest solutions were developed in collaboration with the nation’s leading financial services firms, with sophisticated capabilities that drive efficiency and significantly reduce risk in this area.”

Mr. Schobel continued,Our motivation for commissioning this report is to provide our clients, and the industry as a whole, with a comprehensive analysis of the key factors at work, and educate on the strategies that firms can apply to overcome the challenges they face.”

About RegEd

RegEd is the market-leading provider of RegTech enterprise solutions with relationships with more than 200 enterprise clients, including 80% of the top 25 financial services firms.

Established in 2000 by former regulators, the company is recognized for continuous regulatory technology innovation with solutions hallmarked by workflow-directed processes, data integration, regulatory intelligence, automated validations, business process automation and compliance dashboards. The aggregate drives the highest levels of operational efficiency and enables our clients to cost-effectively comply with regulations and continuously mitigate risk.

Trusted by the nation’s top financial services firms, RegEd’s proven, holistic approach to RegTech meets firms where they are on the compliance and risk management continuum, scaling as their needs evolve and amplifying the value proposition delivered to clients. For more information, please visit www.reged.com.

About Celent

For over 20 years, Celent has helped senior executives make confident decisions around their technology strategies to execute at scale.

As the financial services industry rapidly evolves, there is more complexity, with new regulations, startups, technologies, and applications to stay on top of and prioritize. Celent helps you connect this ever-changing puzzle. We offer objective advice and clarity, backed by a database of thousands of solutions and award-winning global best practice use cases. With real-life domain expertise, we also guide you through the maze of emerging tech in the pursuit of value.

Our people, data, insights, and relationships form the foundation for you to use Celent to make confident technology decisions in financial services.

RegEd and Essential Edge Compliance Outsourcing Services Announce Joint Webinar on Best Practices in Branch Office Inspection Management

The session will provide a hands-on perspective on effectively conducting branch inspections during COVID-19 and beyond

RegEd, the leading provider of compliance technology solutions for the financial services industry, has announced an upcoming webinar that will be co-presented with Essential Edge Compliance Outsourcing Services, a regulatory and compliance/supervision consultancy. The webinar will be held on Thursday December 3 at 12:00PM EST. Attendees will include senior compliance, risk and audit professionals from the nation’s leading financial services firms.

Maximizing Value from Your Branch Office Inspections During Covid-19 and Beyond: A Hands-on Perspective

Branch office oversight has been significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, requiring firms to be more adaptable than ever in how they manage this critical process. As regulators continue to expect firms to administer effective programs for monitoring branches and supervised individuals, firms have had to significantly evolve their approach to keep up with changing times.  This presentation will discuss best practices in conducting branch office inspections in an environment that is constantly changing due to the pandemic and compliance technology.

The webinar will feature Sander J. Ressler, Managing Director of Essential Edge Compliance Outsourcing Services, LLC, who will provide an overview of current trends in the industry, ongoing impacts related to the pandemic, and a forward-looking view as to how firms are likely to continue to advance their programs. Essential Edge currently conducts more than 650 branch inspections annually for over a dozen broker-dealers.  Sander draws on more than 30 years of frontline experience with broker-dealers and registered investment advisers, and will share practical insight on what his clients are experiencing, observations from the field, and best practices to streamline the management of branch exams.

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About RegEd

RegEd is the market-leading provider of RegTech enterprise solutions with relationships with more than 200 enterprise clients, including 80% of the top 25 financial services firms.

Established in 2000 by former regulators, the company is recognized for continuous regulatory technology innovation with solutions hallmarked by workflow-directed processes, data integration, regulatory intelligence, automated validations, business process automation and compliance dashboards. The aggregate drives the highest levels of operational efficiency and enables our clients to cost-effectively comply with regulations and continuously mitigate risk.

Trusted by the nation’s top financial services firms, RegEd’s proven, holistic approach to RegTech meets firms where they are on the compliance and risk management continuum, scaling as their needs evolve and amplifying the value proposition delivered to clients.

About Essential Edge Compliance Outsourcing Services, LLC

Essential Edge Compliance Outsourcing Services, LLC (“Essential Edge”) is a strategic consultancy specializing in compliance and regulatory affairs.  Headquartered in South Florida, and utilizing 10+ seasoned compliance supervision professionals across the country, Essential Edge delivers outsourced branch inspections to Offices of Supervisory Jurisdiction (OSJs) and independent financial advisor practices affiliated with broker-dealers throughout the country.  Essential Edge’s service offerings are designed to rapidly identify and resolve compliance issues in branch office sales and operations for independent broker-dealers before they escalate into expensive and time-consuming issues.  For more information, please visit www.eeoutsourcing.com.

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