Banking: Right to Sell Insurance

Strategy development and successful negotiation were the keys in helping Maine's financial institutions. For years, Maine financial institutions could not sell insurance. That started to change in the mid-1990’s when the U.S. Supreme Court found that national banks could sell insurance, but the prohibition remained on state-chartered institutions in Maine. To solve the problem in Maine, we worked with an association of Maine banks to get the law changed. This required a detailed understanding of the laws governing insurance sales and bank power, and it required careful negotiations with state regulators, credit unions, and insurance producers over a six month period. In the end, we were able to help Maine banks reach an agreement with the parties that would allow Maine financial institutions to start selling insurance, and we helped get the law passed in 1997 with overwhelming support in the Maine Legislature.