Noncompliance with the meeting-related regulations of the National Association of Securities Dealers could land insurance companies on the hot seat. That was the word at the Northeast chapter meeting of the Insurance Conference Planners Association, held at The Sagamore, Bolton Landing, N.Y., in early January.

“We look at every meeting request that comes in, particularly as we acquire small companies that aren't used to this compliance,” said one financial services planner.

The most important rule: training and education meetings that involve investment products have to include at least six hours a day of education in order to be considered a legitimate meeting. In addition, companies cannot pay for entertainment, even after the six hours of education are over, or for any guest expenses.

The better-educated you are are about the NASD guidelines, the more effectively you can work within them and still produce a memorable experience for meeting attendees. For example, if a gift has a logo on it, it is considered to have no value. And an outside sponsor is allowed to host group meals for attendees and guests.

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