James W. Schacht
IREF Board Member
James W. Schacht is President of The Schacht Group. The Schacht Group advises national and international clients with respect to insurance and regulatory matters.
Mr. Schacht has over fifty years of broad based experience with the insurance industry and all areas of insurance regulation, including insurance receiverships, restructuring troubled companies and run-offs, as well as solvency regulation.
Mr. Schacht served for thirty-one years at the Illinois Department of Insurance. During this tenure, he served as Director of Insurance on three separate occasions at the request of two Governors, as well as serving as Chief Deputy Director and as the Special Deputy Receiver. Illinois is the home to several of the largest insurers in the United States.
For over twenty years, Mr. Schacht took an active leadership role in the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, a voluntary association of the chief insurance regulatory officials of the various states. Several of Mr. Schacht’s reform initiatives garnered national attention, particularly the development of the NAIC’s Insurance Regulatory Information System, an early warning system for property and liability companies, the development of the first NAIC Handbook on Statutory Accounting Practices and Procedures, the NAIC’s Financial Regulation Standard & Accreditation Program, The Troubled Insurer Handbook, and numerous model laws, regulations, and regulatory tools.
He is a recognized authority on insurance receiverships and guaranty funds. He has vast experience in dealing with troubled insurers and developing creative rescue plans. He served for over ten years as a strategic advisor for the successful run-off of the Lumbermens Mutual Insurance Group. Also, he developed a corrective plan for Triad Guaranty Insurance Corporation, a mortgage insurer that encountered financial difficulty as a result of the mortgage and housing crisis, and advised Republic Mortgage Insurance Company.
Mr. Schacht has given deposition and court testimony on numerous occasions in civil, criminal, and tax litigation involving insurance and regulatory issues. In addition, he has testified before congressional and state legislative committees.
Mr. Schacht’s clients have included American Insurance Group, Sun Life Insurance Company of Canada, Lloyds of London, American General Group of Companies, St. Paul Group of Companies,Firemen’s Fund Insurance Companies, XL Insurance Group, Sears, Insurance Legislators Foundation, Vesta Insurance Group, CNA Financial Group, Swiss Reinsurance, AXA Reinsurance Group, Zurich Insurance Group, Lumbermens Mutual Insurance Group, Triad Guaranty Insurance Corporation, the American Fraternal Alliance, Old Republic Insurance Company, and Allstate Insurance Company.
Mr. Schacht prepared for the National Conference of Insurance Legislators three public policy studies on insurance regulation. The first study was a survey on how U.S. insurance regulators oversee the market practices of U.S. insurers. The second study was recommendations for improving the present system of market conduct surveillance. The study’s recommendations were accepted not only by NCOIL but have formed the basis for reforming what regulators do to monitor insurer practices and institute remedial action. The third study was a comprehensive report on state authority over the insurance industry. A monograph was prepared for the American Fraternal Alliance on insurance guaranty funds.
He has served on the Board of Directors of a U.S. subsidiary of a major international property and casualty insurer and continues serving on the Board of an innovative U.S. life insurer.
Professional History • President, The Schacht Group (2008-present)•Managing Director, Navigant Consulting (2005-2008)•National Director, PricewaterhouseCoopers (1995-2005) • Director, Chief Deputy Director, Special Deputy Receiver, Illinois Department of Insurance (1964-1995)
Affiliations and Awards
- 1990 – NAIC’s Robert E. Dineen Award in recognition of long service and outstanding contribution to the NAIC and insurance regulation
- 1996 – National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies (NAMIC) Chairman’s Award in recognition of contribution and service in regulation and to the insurance industry.
Mr. Schacht was a long time leader and active participant in the NAIC. At the request of the NAIC officers, he created the plan for a financial services office at the NAIC. He has written numerous model laws and regulations concerning holding companies, guaranty funds, receiverships, and reinsurance. He was actively involved in annual statement changes and statutory accounting matters.
Under Mr. Schacht’s leadership, the NAIC developed The Troubled Insurer Handbook, which today is a guide for insurance departments in dealing with troubled insurance carriers. Over the years, he has been a strong proponent of regulatory reform to meet the demands of the new financial services marketplace. As chairman of the group which developed the legislation for an Interstate Compact for Insurance Receiverships, Mr. Schacht saw an opportunity to use the compact as a vehicle to address the problems of the existing receivership system, but also to address other areas of state insurance regulation. He also developed several manuals for the NAIC, including the following, as well as numerous model laws and regulations:
- Statutory Accounting Manuals for insurance companies;
- Requirements for independent audit opinions and actuarial opinions; and,
- Financial Regulation Standards and Accreditation Program.
- He coordinated the NAIC’s activities and oversight of troubled companies, including Baldwin United Insurance Companies and Executive Life Insurance Company.
In 1990, Mr. Schacht was honored with the National Association of Insurance Commissioner’s distinguished Robert E. Dineen Award in recognition of his outstanding contribution to insurance regulation. In 1996, he received the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies’ Award in recognition of his contribution and service in regulation and to the insurance industry.
Expert Testimony, Publications & Speeches
Mr. Schacht has spoken to numerous insurance industry and association groups on insurance and regulatory subjects. In 1983, he was chosen to represent the United States as one of seven lecturers at an international seminar on reinsurance sponsored by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development held in Singapore. He has authored numerous articles on insurance regulation and has served as a reviewer of insurance textbooks. Courts have qualified him as an expert on various insurance, reinsurance and regulatory matters.