WAVERLY, Iowa (9/8/11)--Credit union and individual policyholders overwhelmingly approved a new mutual ownership structure for CUNA Mutual Group at the 2011 annual meeting of policyholders Wednesday. More than 93% of policyholders who voted approved the plan to reorganize CUNA Mutual Insurance Society (CMIS) from a mutual insurance company into a mutual insurance holding company structure. A two-thirds majority was needed for approval. More than 80,000 policyholders voted. As a mutual insurance holding company, CUNA Mutual Group will continue to be mutually owned with policyholders having full ownership of the new parent mutual holding (MHC) company entity. The new structure requires regulatory approval from the insurance commissioner in Iowa, where CMIS is domiciled. The commissioner will consider the Plan of Reorganization at a public hearing today, and will issue a final order in the coming weeks. If the commissioner approves the Plan of Reorganization, the new structure could become effective by Jan. 31. “The conversion to a mutual holding company structure will maintain policyholders’ rights and significantly enhance our ability to compete and serve,” said Jeff Post, CUNA Mutual Group president/CEO. “This is a natural and positive next step in our continuing commitment to credit unions and to the successful and proven strategy we have been pursuing in recent years.” In asking policyholders for approval, the CUNA Mutual board of directors determined the MHC structure would enhance the company’s ability to access capital and provide greater flexibility to diversify in a way that keeps its focus on credit unions and strengthens its support of the credit union system and all policyholders. Insurance policies and annuity contracts would remain the same and policyholder benefits and rights would not be reduced or altered. Premiums will not increase as a result of the MHC reorganization, said CUNA Mutual.