Regulation benefits the courts, costing everyone elseArticle added by Paul Cross on April 23, 2012
Paul Cross

Paul Cross

Pekin, IL

Joined: December 21, 2006

Our professional industry has become highly legislated and regulated with compliance and suitability laws — to the benefit of whom? And, to the cost and demise of whom?

Look who survived shark infested waters

On a sunshiny February day, an insurance company’s top producers boarded a cruise ship in Miami for a luxurious Caribbean convention cruise. Little did they know they were in for a grand celebration.

Only a few hours out of Miami, the compliance officer fell overboard. And at a cocktail party that evening, a group of the company’s top performers saluted each other with a toast acknowledging they had given the compliance officer a hand overboard. Surprisingly, the next morning it was announced the compliance officer had survived shark-infested waters.

Without gear, an oxygen tank, or a weapon, how could he possible survive shark-infested waters? The Miami Herald called it “professional courtesy.”

Today, those of us who walk the walk and talk the talk helping people accumulate wealth look for a win-win-win relationship. First, the client must win, we must win and the company must win in order to survive and prosper.

What is the most costly — the most destructive — force that is sabotaging our mission, our devoted efforts, to help people accumulate wealth on the way to their retirement? And sabotaging our goal to help people in retirement enjoy more income, with less tax, while leaving more to their family heirs?

America has become the land of the sue me

Our professional industry has become highly legislated and regulated with compliance and suitability laws — to the benefit of whom? And, to the cost and demise of whom?

Now criminal charges are brought upon us with unjust convictions of theft and jail sentencing. How did we get railroaded? How do we get back on track?

The most costly and destructive force that is sabotaging our mission is over-regulated compliance and suitability rules that are difficult and hard to work with.

Unfortunately, class action lawsuits, many of which are unjust, have stimulated an overwhelming number of compliance and suitability issues that have compiled regulation after regulation. It has reached a point that is impossible to abide to in full.

Full disclosure is now over disclosure to the point of no sale

I can't buy because I don't know what I'm signing because I don't understand all of this language that I must admit to before I can buy. It causes buyers to say, "Are you kidding? Who can understand that?”

But that's only the beginning. The courts don't understand it either. Unbiased jurors, biased jurors, flip floppers — no one comprehends it.

It's a lose, lose, lose, win situation. I lose, the would-be buyer loses, the company loses, and the courts win.

Successful advertising is becoming virtually impossible

When the compliance officer overviews and revises your ad or commercial with his stamp of approval, it would be damaging to use it. New business now must come from referrals and people who have been introduced to us by preferred clients to avoid some of the scrutiny of compliance issues.

Wait a minute — introduced referrals even from significant others can be attacked by the criminal system with a conviction of theft and a jail sentence (e.g., the Glenn Neasham case), even in absence of a complaint filed by the new client, the significant other or the client’s family.

In the annuity business, it has long been proclaimed that we sell sleep insurance. Our clients have no worry of market risk, losses and can rest assured with streams of income for life. Now the question is, “Where is our sleep insurance? Yours and mine?”

How do we sleep well at night without fear of being unjustly attacked by the hungry wolves of the court system?

We insure everyone else from the dangers of life, we protect their most valuable assets, we provide them with streams of income guaranteed for life and we insure their life for the benefit of highly regarded family members, business partners, etc. We protect them from the perilous natural disasters. It’s time we revisit our liabilities and the exposure to unjust criminal courts that can destroy our lives and bankrupt our families.

Where is our sleep insurance and our protection to the benefit of our own wellbeing, for ourselves and our family members?

How can we survive shark-infested waters? Is it time to come together and organize a plan that will provide us with sleep insurance? I’m interested in your comments and thoughts relative to the development of some type of a plan, like pre-paid legal, to insure legal and court costs when a member is attacked or comes under investigation by the legal system.

I look forward to hearing from you.
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