Butler discusses insurance regulation with Federalist Society

Published: January 26th, 2009

Category: News

Temperatures close to record lows led one event on the University of Florida Levin College of Law campus to use an unorthodox way of staying warm, insurance.

Henry Butler, executive director of the Searle Center for Law, Regulation, and Economic Growth at Northwestern University School of Law, enticed a classroom full of students on the topic of insurance and regulation.

“This is my first trip to Gainesville, but I think that I brought some of the Chicago weather down with me,” said Butler as he began his presentation. “We will be alright though because we have a really hot and sexy topic. There is nothing more exciting than insurance.”

Butler, a leading public policy analyst and law and economics specialist, has devoted much of his career to improving the country’s civil justice system through judicial education programs.

Butler wasn’t looking to become interested in regulation and state licensing but didn’t seem to be upset to have found it.

“I became interested in this issue because there weren’t enough people proposing to write papers on this specific topic, so I said, ‘What the heck I will write one,’” he said.

Butler partnered with Larry E. Ribstein, professor at the University of Illinois College of Law, and wrote A Single-License Approach to Regulating Insurance, which was published in 2008. The paper shows how the many problems with the current system can be addressed without to much intrusion of federal regulators.

During the presentation, Butler talked about different regulation theories that were in place, discussing the pros and cons. He gave his advice about what he thought needed to be changed, which sometimes correlated messages in the article he co-authored.

Dean Robert Jerry wrapped up the event with a couple of question for Butler. The questions he asked dealt with state licensing and states and regulation.

The Federalist Society, who sponsored this event, is a nonpartisan conservative and libertarian organization, dedicated to fostering balanced and open debate on the fundamental principle of freedom, federalism and judicial restraint.

Joshua Mize, president of the Federalist Society, was honored to have this event and was sad to see it end.

“We always end up wishing we had more time at the end of these events,” Mize said.