Survey: Pandemic Raised Bar for P/C Insurers’ Online Service, Shopping Experience
Significant investments in direct-to-consumer website and mobile design have helped property/casualty insurance companies improve their digital service and shopping experiences. Read more here.
Bracing for the spike in COVID-19 insurance litigation
With COVID-19 ushering in what could be the most litigious period in American history, a project by the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System (IAALS) promises to help both businesses and insurers in reaching a quick resolution to court cases involving business interruption and property damage insurance claims. Read more here.
A plan for future pandemics
America’s small business owners are suffering in numbers we have not seen since the Great Depression. Read more here.
Survey: Insurers are not so confident about the pandemic ending this year
A new survey has revealed that most insurers are not too hopeful about the pandemic ending anytime soon, and that they have even switched priorities in preparation for a new normal. Read more here.
Amid COVID-19, Cyber Criminals Push Phishing, Ransomware Scams
There was a 25% spike in ransomware attacks in the first quarter of 2020 versus the fourth quarter 2019, based on incidents reported to in-house breach response team for insurer Beazley’s Breach Response (BBR) Services. Read more here.
How COVID-19 Will Change Insurance Sales
An agent who is a client of mine asked me, “Do you really think any business owner is truly happy with their agent or insurance company today?” Read more here.
Economic Impact Of COVID-19 Threatens Insurance Portfolios
While the COVID-19 pandemic will likely impact the claims side of the insurance industry, it is also affecting another component: insurance company investment portfolios. Read more here.
Insurance Coverage for Businesses Affected by Civil Unrest
As the nation mourns George Floyd and others who have died at the hands of law enforcement, thousands have mobilized to protest against police brutality, systemic racism, and societal inequity in the United States. Read more here.
Some Question Insurers’ Estimates of Coronavirus Business Interruption Claims
U.S. property and casualty insurers have cast the coronavirus pandemic as an unprecedented event whose massive cost to small businesses they are neither able nor required to cover. Read more here.
Texas spends more than $200 million on PPE to combat COVID-19
The state of Texas has spent more than $200 million on 106 bulk orders of personal protective equipment from March 1 through early June, according to purchase orders released Tuesday by the Texas Division of Emergency Management. Read more here.
Outside of Texas’ big cities, some are still waiting nearly a month for coronavirus test results from state-run mobile units
HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) — Roving test sites staffed by the Texas National Guard – a state solution to increase coronavirus test access outside of major cities – have sometimes proven to be logistical nightmares or left patients waiting days or weeks to find out if they have COVID-19. Read more here.
Texas restaurants can operate at 75% capacity starting Friday
Starting Friday, Governor Greg Abbott is allowing Texas restaurants to expand capacity from 50% to 75%. Cooper’s Old Time Pit Bar-B-Que co-owner Chad Wootan is looking forward to serving more guests. Read more here.
Will business interruption cover trigger in a hurricane if pandemic lockdown is still in effect?
Business interruption insurance has been at the center of countless disputes since the first statewide shelter-in-place order was mandated in California on March 19…Read more here.
How the coronavirus crisis is changing the insurance industry
The COVID-19 pandemic, an unprecedented event in modern history, continues to leave its mark on societies and economies around the world. Read more here.
Coronavirus Liability Waivers Are Popping Up at Gyms, Restaurants and Shops
As Americans return to their favorite gyms, salons and restaurants, waivers will be part and parcel of the experience, legal experts say. Read more here.
Shale companies look to bolster insurance for directors and officers
The U.S. oil and gas industry is paying a hefty price to protect its top brass against potential bankruptcy and investor lawsuits. Read more here.
Pandemic Losses Will Exceed S&P Estimates: Chief Risk Officers Say
Analysts for Standard & Poor’s Global Ratings shared a view that U.S. underwriting losses from COVID-19 would fall in the $15-$30 billion range. Read more here.
Olympics postponement creates insurance hurdle
Next event in the pandemic’s is-this-covered insurance Olympics: the Olympics itself. Specifically, whether the $650 million it is going to potentially cost to postpone the 2020 Summer Olympics to 2021 will be covered by the event’s insurance policy. Read more here.
Farmers Insurance denies business interruption claim the same day it was filed, faces lawsuit
Farmers Insurance is facing a class action lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court over a business interruption claim the company denied on the same day it was filed. Read more here.
Travel insurers make policy changes to address COVID-19
Travel insurance providers are already making policy changes to address the “new normal” of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to travel insurance comparison site Squaremouth. Read more here.
Hurricane prep can’t slow for pandemic
Despite forecasts of an unusually active hurricane season starting in June, preparation in Southeast Texas seems to be proceeding as normal except for the areas of life being changed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here.
Pandemic-Hit Re/insurers Expect a Costly Hurricane Season – and Rates Are Rising
The official start of the Atlantic hurricane season on Monday could signal more steep losses for insurers and reinsurers, already battered by the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on their underwriting and investment positions. Read more here.
Insurers speeding up innovation amid pandemic
After weeks of lockdown, social distancing and government-mandated ‘stay at home’ orders, jurisdictions around the world are slowly announcing their proposed economic and social recovery plans for when their countries shake the grasps of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here.
Insurance companies looking for business interruption insurance solutions
Many area restaurants, small businesses, and private healthcare facilities have filed lawsuits against insurance companies after claims for damages due to the coronavirus pandemic were denied. Read more here.
Thieves Find Unattended Autos Easy Targets During Coronavirus Sheltering-at-Home
With more people than ever staying home to lessen the spread of COVID-19, their sedans, pickup trucks and SUVs are parked unattended on the streets, making them easy targets for opportunistic thieves. Read more here.
COVID-19 and Business Interruption: Some Losses Are Covered and Here’s Why
As some businesses prepare to reopen after COVID-19 quarantine, there are still more questions than answers when it comes to coverage for pandemic-related losses. Read more here.
Dallas Restaurant Group Sues Insurer Over COVID-19 Losses
A Dallas restaurant group has sued Cincinnati Insurance Co., asking a federal judge to rule that its business interruption policy should cover the more than $1 million in damages it experienced from government-mandated shutdowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here.
Some business owners being turned away after insurance claims
Last month KRIS 6 News told you how some business owners are struggling financially due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and to make things worse, their business interruption insurance is being turned away when they file claims. Read more here.
Get ready to rumble: Insurance claims expected to be tested in court
The fight over who should foot the bill for lost business because of shelter-in-place orders is making its way through the courts. Read more here.
As Hurricane Season Starts, Coronavirus to Impact Disaster Preparedness
With forecasters predicting another intense Atlantic hurricane season with as many as 13 to 19 named storms, disaster preparedness experts say it’s critically important for people in evacuation zones to plan to stay with friends or family, rather than end up in shelters during the coronavirus pandemic. Read more here.
Lock your cars! Vehicle theft spikes amid COVID-19 pandemic
With more people than ever staying home to lessen the spread of COVID-19, their sedans, pickup trucks and SUVs are parked unattended on the streets, making them easy targets for opportunistic thieves. Read more here.
Coronavirus Guide: Car Insurance Industry Has Switched To An Online Model
With more than 1,4 million confirmed cases and more than 83.000 deaths, the coronavirus pandemic in the United States does not seem to slow down. Quite the opposite. Read more here.
Insurance Sidesteps Most COVID Job Losses
The insurance industry largely sidestepped the economic onslaught of the coronavirus outbreak, losing 4,400 jobs in April as the pandemic ballooned the nation’s unemployment rate to 14.7 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Read more here.
Coronavirus will be the largest loss on record for insurers, Lloyd’s of London says
In a broader economic assessment report on the impact of Covid-19 for the non-life insurance industry, Lloyd’s of London estimated that the 2020 underwriting losses covered by the industry will hit $107 billion. Read more here.
With Americans hardly driving, should insurers give bigger discounts?
Drivers should get bigger car insurance discounts, consumer advocates argue, citing the drop of miles driven and accident claims during the coronavirus pandemic. Read more here.
Roads Are Emptier But Riskier During Coronavirus Quarantine. Fatality Rate Up 14%.
As Americans have been driving less and covering fewer miles, the emptier roads have become more lethal. Read more here.
Insurance Is Not A Company’s Primary Line of Defense in a Crisis
Instituting and following good business and hiring practices and talking to and educating your employees is the best risk management. Insurance is secondary. A business owner should never say, ‘I can rely on insurance as my primary line of defense.’ Read more here.
On Nearly Emptied Roads, Motor Vehicle Fatality Rate Spikes By 14% In March
In March, as states across the country began implementing stay-at-home orders and commuters got off the road, traffic dropped, but a new National Safety Council report finds that the number of motor vehicle fatalities per miles driven increased by 14% compared with the March 2019 rate. Read more here.
Car Insurance Companies Cutting Costs Because People aren’t Driving as Much
With less people driving on the roads during the pandemic, car insurance companies are helping Texans save money. Camille Garcia with the Insurance Council of Texas said ICT works with over 400 insurance carriers in the state and all are offering deals in their own way. Read more here.
Excess and Surplus Insurers Were Already Raising Prices. Then Came COVID-19
Already grappling with a shaky run due to several years of massive Nat CATs, the E&S market is facing even larger hurdles thanks to COVID-19. Read more here.
P&C insurance tech budgets stay on track despite coronavirus
P&C insurers are staying the course when it comes to their original digital and technology plans and investments for 2020. Read more here.
Should Insurance Companies Pay For COVID Shutdown Losses?
Randy and Amanda Rucker opened River Twice, their modern American BYO on Passyunk Avenue, seven months ago, hoping that his culinary talent and her business acumen would establish the restaurant as a fixture on one of Philadelphia’s most competitive restaurant corridors. Read more here.
Answer Line: Texas insurers responding to less driving because of COVID-19
Is the Texas Department of Insurance doing anything to lower auto insurance rates like in Louisiana because people are driving a lot fewer miles during the pandemic? Read more here.
How are tornado-damaged Dallas retailers managing through the pandemic?
McDonald’s reopened Wednesday at Preston and Royal, and some businesses have signed leases to return. North Haven Gardens and The Toy Maven are still a few months away from opening new stores. Read more here.
Car insurance rebates are coming, but are they enough?
Crashes have dropped sharply under stay-at-home orders, saving insurers billions. Read more here.
Fitch Sees Little Stress on Insurer Ratings From Pandemic. Thus Far.
Having reviewed 70% of all of the North American insurers it rates for the effects of the coronavirus and economic downturn, Fitch Ratings has affirmed the ratings of 72% of the carriers with stable outlooks. Only 4% have been downgraded. Read more here.
Hidden Costs of Canceling Car Insurance by State
Canceling your car insurance during the pandemic may be much more costly than you bargained for. Saving a few dollars today can cost hundreds more in the long run, due to reinstatement fees, fines, and hikes in insurance premiums. Read more here.
Emergency systems are already stretched-thin by the virus response and distancing during evacuations will be a challenge
As the June 1 start of hurricane season inches nearer, U.S. emergency managers are gearing up for the possibility of a more active than normal storm season as the country battles the coronavirus pandemic at the same time. Read more here.
Do You Live Where It Costs The Most—Or Least—For Car Insurance?
While auto insurance premiums are largely based on personal factors, including one’s driving record, age, gender, marital status, and so forth, where a driver lives can have a significant impact on his or her rates. Read more here.
A Pandemic Insurance Backstop Needs to Happen. We’re Looking at You, Congress
As the economic effects of COVID-19 rage on, many business interruption losses won’t be covered, threatening insurers with grueling litigation for years to come. Read more here.
Consumer group accuses GEICO of overcharging drivers for auto insurance
The Consumer Federation of California Education Foundation (CFC Foundation) is calling for GEICO to refund hundreds of millions of dollars to California auto insurance policyholders after claiming that the insurer is overcharging customers who are driving less and filing fewer collision claims due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here.
Coronavirus And Car Insurance – How Will Future Car Insurance Premiums Be Affected By The Pandemic
Stay at home restrictions imposed by authorities, due to the coronavirus outbreak, have caused vehicles across the US to sit in garages and in parking spots for long periods of time. Read more here.
Dallas Wine Bar Sues Hartford Insurance For Denying COVID-19 Claim
Trial lawyers at the Fears Nachawati Law Firm have filed a federal lawsuit for an exclusive Dallas wine bar against Hartford Insurance for denying coverage of damages from the government-imposed shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here.
Lack of COVID testing hampers insurance claims
Child care centers in Kentucky are concerned that their insurer is not covering their business interruption claims since they have not been tested for COVID-19. Read more here.
Consumer prices had their biggest drop ever. Is that a good thing?
You may be cheering the arrival of lower prices for some goods and services as perhaps the only silver lining in the devastating coronavirus pandemic. A core measure of inflation fell 0.4% in April, the largest monthly decline on record, the Labor Department said Tuesday. Read more here.
Hospitals at center of fight over liability protections in coronavirus relief bill
Hospitals are warning they will be slow to restart elective procedures like knee surgeries and colonoscopies without assurances from Congress they won’t get sued by patients and their own workers if they are infected by the coronavirus during those visits. Read more here.
Insurers don’t need to pay coronavirus business interruption claims: Treasury
The Treasury Department does not appear to share the belief that insurance companies should pay business interruption claims for coronavirus-related shutdowns. Read more here.
These North Texas businesses bought insurance, only to learn coronavirus-related losses aren’t covered
Restaurants are among those suing insurers for denying their claims, but the insurance industry says viruses were never included. Read more here.
Drivers Taking Fresh Look At Mileage-Based Insurance Programs
The daily commute has been put on hold for many drivers. Yet the cost of insuring their car parked in the driveway isn’t going away. That has led to growing interest among drivers to reduce those costs, including usage-based programs that reward drivers for safe driving and reduced mileage. Read more here.
National Experts Examine Surging Business Insurance Crisis
Restaurants, health clubs, stores, and many other businesses large and small have been forced to shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here.
Consumer groups demand more auto insurance premium relief
Consumer advocate groups Center for Economic Justice (CEJ) and the Consumer Federation of America (CFA) are calling for insurers to not only increase the amount of auto insurance premium relief being offered to policyholders, but also to continue providing such relief for “at least several months.” Read more here.
Texas Business Owners Take Insurance Companies to Court Over Business Interruption Insurance Claim Denials
Dozens of Texas business owners were banking on business interruption insurance policies to pay out over closures due to COVID-19 stay-at-home orders. But now some, including the owner of Diesel Barbershops, are taking their insurance companies to court over their claims being denied. Read more here.
Coronavirus business interruption battle pits business lobby against itself
Small businesses trying to get their state legislatures to force insurance companies to cover coronavirus losses are coming up against an opponent many might not have expected: the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Read more here.
Buffett Says Berkshire Would Write Pandemic Insurance. That Is, If the Price Is Right.
The chairman of Berkshire Hathaway said that while his insurance units aren’t heavily exposed to underwriting losses from the COVID-19 pandemic, they would be willing to insure pandemics in the future. Read more here.
Willis Paints COVID-19 Insurance Loss Big Picture: It’s a Wash or Historic Catastrophe
If the novel COVID-19 pandemic is brought under control soon, the disease’s impact on the insurance industry as a whole may be pretty much a wash. If not, the industry may be on the verge of an historic catastrophe. Read more here.
Progressive Q1 Results Reflect ‘Significant Impact’ from Coronavirus, Restrictions
The Progressive Corp. said its results for the first quarter were “significantly impacted” by the spread of the coronavirus and social distancing and shelter-in-place restrictions. Read more here.
Gringo’s Mexican Kitchen sues insurance over pandemic coverage
A group of Houston restaurants and a Beaumont orthodontist are among the latest Texas companies to sue their insurance companies for not fulfilling business interruption insurance claims related to the pandemic. Read more here.
Allstate Delivers Strong Operating Results
The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) today reported financial results for the first quarter of 2020. Read more here.
Only 31% Of Drivers Asked Their Insurer For COVID-19 Financial Assistance
Insurance companies are offering several forms of assistance to their policyholders, but many drivers aren’t taking advantage of them. Read more here.
Covid-19 Biggest Catastrophe Ever: AIG Exec; 1Q Loss Posted
American International Group is budging for COVID-19 catastrophe losses that exceed Hurricane Katrina, an executive said Tuesday morning. Read more here.
Thomas McGarity: Beware efforts absolving companies of COVID-19 liability
As the deadly coronavirus spread across the country, doctors, nurses, bus drivers, field workers, meat packers, janitors and other essential workers showed up for work to provide the goods and services needed by those of us able to shelter in place. Read more here.
Watch Gov. Greg Abbott’s press conference on Texas coronavirus updates
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott will provide updates on the new coronavirus during a news conference starting at 2:30 p.m. CT, which is available to watch live courtesy of KXAS-TV. Read more here.
DWI arrests down from last year after stay-home order, police say
Drunken driving arrests decreased by 43% in the first month after Austin and Travis County’s stay-at-home policies went into effect March 24, compared with the same period in 2019, Austin crime statistics show. Read more here.
Insurers’ Loss Estimates Linked to Coronavirus Range Widely: Analysis
Insurers are normally great with numbers. But the coronavirus pandemic has them struggling to estimate how many billions of dollars in losses they face, and what the fallout will be for their massive investment portfolios. Read more here.
Car insurance companies give out credits, but some haven’t seen any
Car insurance bills are smaller, as less people hit the roads. Insurance companies are helping many drivers make ends meet by giving credits, as many people choose to stay home. But some haven’t seen this money back yet. Read more here.
USAA chief: Coronavirus ‘cabin fever’ may be behind car crash uptick after initial steep decline
USAA CEO Wayne Peacock told CNBC on Monday that the company has recently noticed increases in car crashes, even with coronavirus-related restrictions on businesses in place. Read more here.
S&P Expects States to Lose Bids to Mandate Coronavirus Business Interruption Coverage
Standard & Poor’s said it does not expect state legislators to succeed in their efforts to retroactively expand business interruption insurance coverage for COVID-19-related losses. Read more here.
AIG quarterly profit nosedives as COVID-19 claims loom
American International Group Inc. on Monday posted a 93% drop in quarterly adjusted profit, as it set aside money to cover claims related to the COVID-19 outbreak, which it called the single largest catastrophe loss the industry has ever seen. Read more here.
Analysis: If reopening the economy is risky, who’s getting protection?
Top officials say it’s safe to reopen at least some of the economy, but they’re also pushing for “blanket immunity” for businesses, should anything go wrong. That leaves some people out. Read more here.
Consumer Groups Oppose Immunity for Businesses From Coronavirus Lawsuits
U.S. consumer advocates are urging Congress to resist growing demands by companies for protections from coronavirus-related lawsuits as states start to ease pandemic restrictions and businesses begin to reopen. Read more here.
Nationwide’s Left the Building. Insurer Makes Remote Work Permanent in 5 States
Nationwide said it plans to permanently transition to a hybrid operating model that comprises primarily working-from-office in four main corporate campuses and working-from-home in most other locations. Read more here.
COVID-19’s Impact on Workers’ Comp
Is a worker who contracts COVID-19 compensated under workers’ compensation for income loss and medical expenses? Read more here.
Important Statements from Triple-I on Business Interruption Litigation Filings
Global pandemic risks are uninsurable. Given the unpredictability and unimaginable potential for worldwide losses, insurance is simply unable to cover a global pandemic. This concept is made expressly clear in standard U.S. business interruption policies, which are reviewed and supported by state insurance regulators. Read more here.
Data may imply coronavirus auto-premium reductions were premature
Amid record low travel and vehicle miles traveled, severe and fatal crashes in cities around the United States have increased. From New York City to Austin Texas, there has been even more speeding, more deadly crashes, and more frequent severe crashes than before Covid. Read more here.
6 Ways Insurance Brokers Can Be a Resource to Clients During COVID-19 Crisis
Risk managers at companies of all kinds have been forced to rapidly evaluate how the coronavirus pandemic is affecting their businesses. They’ve had to react quickly with limited information while trying to forecast future developments. At the same time, they must build a plan for when their businesses return to some level of normalcy on an uncertain time-frame. Read more here.
NCCI: COVID-19 Will Cost Billions Even With Modest Infection Rates
If only 10 percent of health care workers contract COVID-19 and all of their claims are deemed compensable, workers’ compensation loss costs for that sector could double or even triple in some states, according to an analysis by the National Council on Compensation Insurance. Read more here.
Liberty Mutual Estimates Q1 Loss from Coronavirus to Be Like Moderate Catastrophe
Global insurer Liberty Mutual said the COVID-19 pandemic is likely to have the most impact on its first quarter investment portfolio results, with its business in trade credit, general liability, workers compensation, and event cancellation coverage among the lines most exposed due to the economic downturn from the pandemic. Read more here.
Credit FAQ: How COVID-19 Risks Factor Into U.S. Property/Casualty Ratings
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought to the forefront the gap between property/casualty (P/C) insurers’ insurable and noninsurable coverage. Pressure is rising among small-business owners, politicians, regulators, and insurance industry participants to solve the ultimate question of whether P/C insurance policies are required to cover COVID-19-related losses. Read more here.
Some Insurance Regulators Skeptical About Business Interruption Claims
Insurance commissioners in at least seven states have advised business owners not to get their hopes up if pursuing business-interruption claims. Scott Seaman, a partner with the Hinshaw & Culbertson law firm in Chicago, posted a blog on Friday that relayed communications from insurance commissioners in Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, West Virginia and the District of Columbia. Read more here.
Calls for business interruption insurance cover for coronavirus grow louder
The insurance industry is now facing increasing pressure, as thousands of business owners are demanding their insurers cover business interruption claims related to the coronavirus pandemic, and critics such as the US president himself have even stepped in to comment on the matter. Read more here.
Some Auto Insurance Companies Are Advocating for Rate Hikes
You may have heard car insurance companies are refunding premiums to millions of consumers because of the coronavirus pandemic. But what you may not have heard yet – is that some companies are also interested in raising your annual rates. A potential car insurance rate hike is the last news you want to hear, with so many consumers suddenly out of work, struggling to make ends meet – and in many cases – not even driving. Read more here.
Employees Go Back to Work and Get Covid-19. What’s the Liability Picture?: Opinion
If America is going to restart its economy, at whatever pace, it needs to think about a major roadblock: liability from Covid-19. If a university or workplace reopens, and some employees or students get sick, should they have the right to sue? Read more here.
TxDOT shares sobering statistics for work zones in the Amarillo area
The Texas Department of Transportation shared some alarming numbers related to work zones in the Amarillo area. Due to Work Zone Awareness Week being last week, TxDOT shared some traffic crash numbers for work zones in, and around Amarillo. Read more here.
III: Rewriting Contracts And Mandating Payouts Would Bankrupt Insurers
State legislation aimed at retroactively rewriting business interruption policies nationwide would cost insurers tens of billions of dollars a month and quickly imperil the U.S. insurance industry’s solvency, according to the Insurance Information Institute (Triple-I). Read more here.
Could insurers’ auto discounts be backfiring?
The various auto insurance premium discounts being offered by insurers amid the coronavirus pandemic are not enough to instill customer loyalty – instead having the opposite effect and prompting customers shop around for alternatives, a new study from J.D. Power has found. Read more here.
‘Fast follower’ insurance firms to feel the sting of COVID-19 pandemic
The insurance industry has never been known for its speed or agility. Rather, it has been characterized as slow, methodical, and cautious of any sudden movement. Of course, that’s a generalization. There are many insurance firms that break the mold and lead the way in terms of transformative innovation, but, generally speaking, most insurers have opted to spend their time on other things … until now. Read more here.
Hard-hit restaurants, gyms and other businesses are battling insurers over the coronavirus, sparking a new Washington lobbying war
A multibillion-dollar standoff between the nation’s leading insurers and the restaurants, hotels, gyms and theaters that purchase their policies has spilled into some of the most powerful corridors of Washington, as both sides clash over who should foot the sky-high costs of the coronavirus outbreak. Read more here.
Some Onsite Agent, Adjuster Licensing Exams Now Available in Texas
Texas insurance regulators say agents and adjusters can now take licensing exams at select sites in the state. The testing locations for Pearson VUE, the state’s testing contractor, had previously been closed do to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) says it has authorized Pearson Vue to resume testing at sites where social distancing and safeguards are in place to reduce risks. Read more here.
Texas to Insurers: Credit Score Exemption Rules Apply During Pandemic
The Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) has issued a reminder to carriers that Insurance Code Section 559.103 provides for exceptions to the use of credit scores affected by certain events, including temporary job loss. TDI said the exemption applies following the disaster declaration issued by Gov. Greg Abbot in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here.
Insurers Brace for Earnings Stress
Standard & Poor’s Global Ratings reports that the effect of the coronavirus on capital markets will likely influence U.S. insurance company earnings in the first quarter of 2020. However, underwriting performance will likely not be affected. Read more here.
Local small-business owners say insurance is letting them down
Small business owners are struggling because of the financial impact of COVID-19. Many were forced to close shop and thought they could rely on their insurance policies to financially get by, but they say they’re being denied the help they need. Read more here.
Some homeowners will face balloon payment after months of skipping mortgage
Many mortgage companies are letting homeowners skip payments during this economic crisis. But some forbearance plans mean homeowners will owe a balloon payment for all the months skipped in just a few short months. Some families worry they won’t be able to pay it. We asked Matt Schulz with Lending Tree for advice. Read more here.
Insurers Face COVID-19 Business Interruption Coverage Uncertainty
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, insurers have found themselves in the spotlight relative to business interruption (BI) coverage issues. Over the past month, these considerations have become ubiquitous and politically charged amid unprecedented shutdowns and travel restrictions. Read more here.
Insurance Agencies Navigate New Landscape Caused by COVID-19
Area insurance agents say they’re busy connecting with clients, doing their best to answer questions from business owners whose companies are shuttered under stay-at-home orders caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Read more here.
Litigation over business interruption insurance heats up
The business interruption litigation landscape continues to heat up in the midst of COVID-19, with big names like Chef Thomas Keller jumping in to sue his insurer over coronavirus business interruption claims and other businesses following suit. Read more here.
Liability and the Coronavirus: Will Businesses Be Held Liable?
In an interview with CNBC, White House Economic Adviser Larry Kudlow said businesses should not be held responsible for employees or customers getting sick as governors move to reopen state economies. Read more here.
How COVID-19 Impacts the Surplus Lines Insurance Industry
Surplus lines insurers may need to respond to past, present and future developments arising from COVID-19 insurance policyholder claims, current state insurance department bulletins and orders, and potential future legislation. Read more here.
Travelers, Insured Law Firm Spar Over Civil Authority Business Income Loss Claim
Travelers Cos. has gone to federal court in California seeking a declaratory judgment that it is not obligated to pay any business income losses of a law firm it has insured under two business owner policies. Read more here.
SBA reports data breach in disaster loan application website
Thousands of small business owners reeling from the aggressive measures taken to halt the spread of the coronavirus may have had their personal information exposed last month on a government website that handles disaster loan applications. Read more here.
On the Front Lines: Georgia Insurance Commissioner Deployed by National Guard
Georgia Insurance Commissioner John F. King has been on the front lines during times of crisis for the United States for most of his career. A former Georgia police chief and current Major General in the U.S. Army National Guard, King has experience in emergency management, handling everything from natural catastrophes to top military operations. Read more here.
RIMS seeks pandemic risk insurance program
RIMS, the risk management society, is urging Congress to create a pandemic risk insurance program to accelerate economic recovery during and after events like COVID-19. Read more here.
Business Interruption Claims From COVID-19 Could Bankrupt The Insurance Industry
Pandemics have been with humanity since ancient times. The P&C industry has $860B capital and surplus – making it a good target for regulators and clients. Read more here.
Terrorism Risk Insurance: Market Is Stable but Treasury Could Strengthen Communications About Its Processes
With the support of a program established under the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) in which the federal government and insurers would share losses in the event of a certified act of terrorism, terrorism risk insurance is generally available and affordable in the United States. Read more here.
Insurers should not be forced into coronavirus relief – Opinion
With the shutdown causing business losses to spiral — the National Restaurant Association, for instance, estimates that the shutdown will cost the industry some $225 billion through May — companies are naturally looking to their business interruption insurance for relief. Read more here.
Six insurers face federal class action lawsuits for denying business interruption claims
Federal class action lawsuits have been filed against several insurance companies for denying policy claims the plaintiffs had made to protect against business interruptions – specifically claims related to the business closures mandated in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here.
South Carolina Reports Damage to 900 Homes from at Least 16 Tornadoes
More than 900 homes were damaged and 111 houses were destroyed by a series of tornadoes and strong winds that moved across the state Monday, emergency officials said. Damage from the storms were reported in 21 counties, the South Carolina Emergency Management Division said Wednesday. Read more here.
Lawmaker Unveils Bill To Force Insurers To Cover Virus Losses
U.S. Rep. Mike Thompson, D-St. Helena, introduced federal legislation that would require insurance companies selling business interruption insurance to cover business losses resulting from a pandemic. Read more here.
Chefs say insurers aren’t paying virus claims
A group of chefs from noted restaurants say they paid millions in premiums to insurance companies that are now denying their claims as small businesses across the country struggle with coronavirus lockdowns. Anna Werner speaks to chef Thomas Keller, who says he paid extra for virus coverage and is now suing his insurance company for not paying up. We cover his story for our series Financial Fallout, on the economic impact of the virus crisis. Watch the video here.
Chubb CEO: Why pandemic losses are not included in business interruption insurance
Extending business interruption losses is a “self-inflicted injury” and would create “great uncertainty at a time when we have enough uncertainty,” Chubb CEO Evan Greenberg told CNBC. Watch the video here.
Progressive’s Monthly Financial Report Shows Early COVID Impacts
Progressive Corporation released a monthly earnings report for March 2020 yesterday, providing some early signs of the premium and loss ratio impacts of COVID-19 shelter-at-home restrictions for property/casualty insurers. Read more here.
Digital Exclusive: How COVID-19 has a big impact on insurance
With stay-at-home orders in effect till at least April 30th, Governor Greg Abbott tells Texans they should not leave their homes unless it is for essential purposes. With Texans at home that means less driving on Texas roads. Read more here.
How Insurance Claims Pros Are Adjusting to Pandemic Complications
The coronavirus pandemic has not shut down the day-to-day business of adjusting claims, but the workload is lighter and claims managers are coping with evolving government regulations and guidelines. Read more here.
Workers’ Comps Claims Adjusters Get the Chance to Telecommute. Now Can They Make It Succeed?
Staying connected to co-workers and injured workers is paramount for claims adjusters. They can remain connected, working from home, but may need support from their organizations to do so effectively. Read more here.
Auto Claims Decline 40 to 50% as Consumers Stay Home, Snapsheet Says
Insurers are reporting a 40 to 50 percent drop in claims volume for personal auto and a 30 to 40 percent reduction for commercial auto due to the coronavirus pandemic, an executive for claims-automation provider Snapsheet said Tuesday. Read more here.
As Coronavirus Empties Streets, Speeders Hit the Gas
Empty roads in the United States and Europe are tempting drivers to go out and shift into high gear. From Los Angeles to New York, London and Berlin, coronavirus lockdowns have drained traffic from normally crowded roads. Read more here.
Despite Insurance Industry Concerns, More States Introduce COVID-19 BI Bills
New Jersey was the first state to propose a bill that would mandate insurers cover COVID-19-related losses under their business interruption policies, and the insurance industry was quick to express its concern. But that hasn’t stopped some states from rolling out similar proposed legislation. Read more here.
Businesses Warn Fear of Lawsuits Could Stall Rebooting of Economy; Urge Coordination
Litigation surrounding coronavirus responses is already underway and businesses are warning that the fear of more lawsuits could hinder the reboot of the U.S. economy. Read more here.
Traffic is down, but fatal wrecks continue on Texas roads
Traffic is lighter these days, but it’s too soon to say whether that’s made it safer for Texas motorists as millions work from home or are laid off. One thing hasn’t changed: Texas is continuing its years-long streak with at least one fatal crash every day on a public roadway. Read more here.
IN THE KNOW: Protect yourself from common scams related to the coronavirus
The Federal Trade Commission, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and other government entities are sounding the alarm on a number of scams that have targeted consumers in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. Read more here.
Triple-I Offers Insights into Business Interruption Insurance Coverage
released today a Fact Sheet on Understanding Business Interruption Insurance and Pandemics. “Business interruption policies generally require the losses to be caused by direct physical damage to the business’s property. For this reason, the deadly tornadoes the U.S. incurred this week will likely generate many covered business interruption claims,” said Sean Kevelighan, CEO, Triple-I. Read more here.
How P/C Insurance Industry Can Maximize Its Response to Coronavirus: Crisis Manager
“I’m shocked, just shocked that you’re suggesting that during a crisis that insurance companies might in fact be considered the villains. I’ve never heard that before.”
That’s Richard Levick speaking. Levick, who has a public affairs, crisis and reputation risk management firm, also has a sense of humor. His corporate slogan is: “Fixing the Impossible.” Read more here.
Texas storm attorneys transitioning to virus attorneys? Law firms start trolling for COVID-19 business interruption claims
Hurricane season isn’t quite here yet, but there may be a different kind of disaster to feed the appetites of storm chasing attorneys for the time being – COVID-19 business interruption claims. Read more here.
State Farm Using Technology To File Claims
If your home, car, or other property was damaged by severe weather, you’ll need to submit an insurance claim. How does this process change with #COVID19 social distancing? Watch the video here.
Former Comp Board Chair Wants Federal Death Benefits for Workers Killed by Virus
Long before the coronavirus pandemic has subsided, families of frontline workers lost to the disease may face a stark reality: Even if they can show that a COVID-19 illness was work-related, death benefits vary widely from state to state. Read more here.
It’s Time for the IA Channel to Show Its Strength
The future seems unclear right now. Even the very near future as things are changing quickly. Of course, there is basis to that concern. Every industry is feeling it. Some more so than others. Thankfully, the insurance industry is strong. And, now is the time to show our strength and capture the essence of what makes working with an independent agency great. Read more here.
Washington Post columnist comes out in defense of insurance industry
As proposed legislation forcing insurers to pay for business interruption insurance claims related to the COVID-19 pandemic continues to gain traction, one writer for the Washington Post argues that insurance companies should not be asked to cover these outbreak-prompted shutdowns. Read more here.
Pandemic Insurance? Wimbledon’s $2 Million Gamble Paid Off by Canceling Tournament During Coronavirus Scare
Wimbledon has reportedly paid $2 million a year for 17 years to be protected by something called pandemic insurance. So with the COVID-19 crisis hitting the world, the annual major tennis tournament has been canceled altogether, rather than postponed like many other major sporting events around the globe.
Monthly Loss of $431 Billion Spurs Insurance Claims Across U.S.
Barbara Snowden dreamed of opening a wig shop to help women who’d lost their hair during chemotherapy feel better as they battled cancer. In November, she beamed at the grand opening of Hair Goals Club in the Houston suburb of Humble, Texas. Read more here.
Opinion: Feds should play key role in pandemic coverage
A “stable national government that can cover today’s losses by borrowing against tomorrow’s income” should be the insurance solution to the coronavirus pandemic, which is generally excluded from business interruption coverage, Megan McArdle writes. “After all, while the businesses that are currently shuttered didn’t do anything wrong, neither did their insurers,” McArdle writes. Read more here. (requires subscription)
Auto insurance companies return $800 million in premiums because no one is driving
Two insurers — Allstate and American Family Insurance — announced Monday they will give back about $800 million to their auto insurance customers because people are driving far less during the coronavirus crisis. Read more here.
Proposed insurance bill could cause stock market to fall even further
A new bill which would make insurance companies pay for business interruption claims related to the COVID-19 pandemic could prompt a massive drop in the US stock market, some analysts warn. Read more here.
Insurance scenario planning for the day after coronavirus
As the adrenaline rush of converting entire companies to WFH for the first time ever starts to wear off, insurer executives are beginning to think about what comes next. Read more here.
Latest Coronavirus Updates From Gov. Abbott, Rent Help, Benefits For Texas Workers, Employers
As more and more communities around the United States experience, a rising number of Coronavirus cases, state and federal officials are looking at ways to further prevent community spread, ensure public safety and combat the rising economic impact. Read the article here.
Gov. Abbott talks COVID-19 executive order, ill-advised spring break trip, TWC struggles
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott explained his executive order and expressed his frustration with a group of people who recently took a spring break trip to Mexico during a live interview with KXAN on Wednesday. Read more and watch the interview here.
Rating agency puts Lloyd’s on negative due to COVID-19 exposure
Fitch Ratings Inc. placed the AA- financial strength rating of Lloyd’s of London on “rating watch negative” on Thursday due to concerns over the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on the market. Read more here.
Insurers must look forward, not backward, in post-coronavirus world
Insurance product creation historically has been based on historical data – the rearview mirror view. It always has been, and there is value in doing so. Past trends are likely to be repeated, and coverages and rating need to reflect that. Read more here.
Proposed legislation could destroy insurance industry say experts
Proposed legislation in the city of Boston that would retroactively change insurance contracts to cover for business losses resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic could collapse the industry, and could even be unconstitutional, some industry experts have warned. Read more here.
COVID-19 Pandemic Threatens Gulf Insurers’ Earnings: S&P Report
The fallout from the coronavirus pandemic and tumbling oil prices threaten the earnings of insurers in the Gulf, S&P Global Ratings said on Wednesday, possibly leading to negative rating actions. Read more here.
Coronavirus implications for insurance
As a starting point, it is important to appreciate that insurance policies are subject to the rule of strict construction. When the language in an insurance policy is ambiguous, meaning that it is susceptible to more than one reasonable interpretation, courts will adopt the interpretation that is most favorable to the insured. Read more here.
Insurance Licensing Services of America Offers Free Trial for New Online Tool for Surplus Lines Compliance
Insurance Licensing Services of America (ILSA) planned to unveil the insurance industry’s first comprehensive surplus lines compliance tool in April. Now, to help surplus lines brokers working remotely continue to meet their compliance obligations, ILSA will offer a free 60-day trial of its Surplus Lines Calculator and Tax Tool (CATT). Read more here.
How to Reduce Your Car Insurance Costs During Coronavirus Pandemic
Putting your car insurance on hold can be a good way to save money if you have an out-of-use vehicle. But it’s not as easy as halting your Netflix subscription. Amid a pandemic, it’s no time to pay for things you don’t need, and that includes car insurance for an idle vehicle. Read more here.
What is the Battalion’s ‘Texas COVID-19 Cases’ map?
The Battalion has been tracking details about coronavirus cases in Texas, collecting information around the clock from our own reporting, federal, state and local officials as well as private organizations. Read more here.
Buyers, insurers call for 9/11-type fund to relieve COVID-19 impact
More than 30 policyholder groups from retail and other sectors hard-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic on Tuesday joined with major insurance organizations to call on the Trump administration and Congress to create a federal recovery fund to provide liquidity to businesses. Read more here.
From Free Coverage to Medical Masks. P/C Insurers Deliver Some Good.
While the property/casualty insurance industry is fighting attempts to force it to pay for the huge business income losses that it says most policies were never intended to cover, some individual insurers are finding small ways to assist the businesses and families being hurt by the coronavirus shutdowns. Read the article here.
P/C Insurers Put a Price Tag on Uncovered Coronavirus Business Interruption Losses
The property/casualty industry estimates that business interruption losses from the coronavirus just for small businesses in the U.S. could be between $220-$383 billion per month — or a quarter to half of the total industry surplus available to pay all P/C claims. Read more here.
French Laundry restaurateur Thomas Keller sues insurer for coronavirus losses
Thomas Keller, the famed chef behind restaurants including The French Laundry and Per Se, is seeking a court judgment to confirm his insurance company should cover coronavirus-related business losses. Read the article here.
Impress Your Clients During The Pandemic And Beyond
Everyone is affected. It’s fair to say everyone around the world has their lives disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Fortunately for you, you are not in a hospital on a ventilator. You are likely working remotely, also known as confined to barracks at home. Read the article here.
Politicians Target Insurance Contracts
Government shutdowns are wreaking widespread economic havoc, and now lawmakers are desperate for cash to shore up businesses that may have no choice other than to close. Some suggest that insurers should pick up the tab, but without a federal backstop this will generate more long-term economic damage. Read the article here. (subscription required)
Gov. Abbott ordering quarantine for visitors from New York tri-state area, city of New Orleans
Texas Governor Greg Abbott will be issuing a new executive order on Thursday, requiring people from the New York tri-state area and the city of New Orleans into a mandatory quarantine for 14 days or until the end of their visit in the state, administered by Texas DPS. Read the article here.
Insurers scramble to avoid 9/11-style coronavirus backlash
Insurance companies are facing political pressure to pay what could be a crippling sum of coronavirus-related claims — even though many of them say their policies don’t cover pandemics. Read the article here.
Gilbert parents share struggles working from home
Work and home life are now intertwined for Amy and Mike Harris. They both work at the State Farm offices in Tempe. The company, like many others, moved employees out of the office amid coronavirus. Read the article here.
COVID-19’s Impact On Your Car Insurance
With many states on lockdown and people across the country avoiding travel and gatherings, countless car owners are driving a lot less. If your driving habits have been significantly impacted, you may be wondering if you should make any changes to your car insurance policy. Here’s a look at how COVID-19 could affect your car insurance decisions. Read the article here.
How Policy Silence on Pandemics May Bedevil Insurers on Coronavirus Claims
Policy Silence on Pandemics May Bedevil Insurers on Coronavirus Claims RiskGenius CEO describes the possibility that the absence of language explicitly covering communicable disease claims or exclusion clauses in commercial insurance policies will put more carriers on the hook to cover business interruption and other claims. In fact, RiskGenius estimates that roughly 80 percent of commercial insurance policies are “silent” or vulnerable on communicable disease coverage. Read the article here.
AM Best Warns Losses Could Be Big for P/C Insurers Writing Event Cancellation Business AM Best notes that event insurance is a customized form of insurance, and every covered event is unique and policy wording can vary greatly. Limits can be as low as $500,000, and up as high as $10 million depending on the circumstances, and prices may vary as well. Read the article here.
COVID-19: On Disrupted Loss Reserve Diagonals and Lengthening Tails
It’s axiomatic to assert that the coronavirus has changed everything both personally and professionally. Going forward, it’ll be our aim at Assured Research to strike a balance.
Read more here.
Carefully review policies concerning COVID-19 coverage
Businesses need to carefully review every element of their property and business interruption insurance policies to determine whether they will respond to losses due to temporary shutdowns during the COVID-19 pandemic, said Marsh LLC experts. Read the article here.
NAIC Statement on Congressional Action Relating to COVID-19
State insurance regulators are committed to working at the state and federal level to help mitigate the devastating economic impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Read more here.
Remote work in the time of COVID-19
The online workforce is being targeted like never before — and particularly with many more federal employees now working from home – the threat is real. Read more here.
P/C industry shows strength amid pandemic, experts say
The property casualty insurance sector is in a strong position as the US faces the coronavirus pandemic, with a decrease in driving potentially leading to a “slowdown in auto-related claims,” said Piper Sandler analyst Paul Newsome. APCIA President and CEO David Sampson has noted that the “stability of the sector could be impacted” if policymakers require payment of claims not covered under existing policies. Read more here.
Property, casualty policies may be exposed to virus claims
Experts from RiskGenius say that public policy may also play a role in how claims play out. The caution is don’t just focus on property policies as casualty policies matter. Additionally in light of the issues cruise ships are facing, Directors and Officers coverage may come front and center. Read the article here.
Virus Fight Insurers Thought They’d Dodged Is Looming Anyway
For years, property-casualty insurers have sought to protect their business from the ripple effects of a pandemic. The growing scrutiny of civil authority clauses and what constitutes property damage means the industry is likely to face more pushback. Read the article here.
Insurance Makes ‘Essential Business’ List for States Restricting Commerce Due to Virus
Insurance industry professionals might take some pride in knowing that they are considered essential. There is no mandatory federal order on what is an essential business, although there is guidance from the Department of Homeland Security that states can follow. Read the article here.
What State Insurance Regulators Have Asked of P/C Insurers to Address Coronavirus
As state insurance regulators monitor and respond to the coronavirus impact on insurance, property/casualty insurers are calling on them to coordinate their requests for data and ease up on some requirements. Read the wish list of items to address and some state-focuses responses. Read the article here.
Texas counties, cities have issued stay at home orders
While Texas Governor Abbott refrained from a statewide shelter in place order, there are many counties and cities that are taking steps to “Stay Safe and Stay Home”. Eleven counties including Bexar, Collin, Dallas, Denton, Harris, Hays, Hunt, McClennan, Tarrant, Travis and Williamson along with the cities of Austin, Dallas, El Paso, San Antonio, Waco have joined the growing list calling on their residents to stay home. Read the article here.
Senate, White House agree on $2T stimulus bill
The Trump administration and the Senate have agreed on a $2 trillion stimulus package aimed at preventing a steep recession because of the coronavirus pandemic. The package includes a $1,200 payment to Americans earning as much as $75,000 annually among other measures. Read more here.
Texas’ largest counties are issuing stay-at-home orders as coronavirus spreads
Counties and cities throughout Texas are issuing shelter in place orders. The message is stay home unless our jobs are essential for the health and safety of our community. Harris and Tarrant counties’ directives take effects tonight at midnight through April 3. San Antonio’s remains in effect until 11:59 p.m. April 9, while Austin’s goes until April 13. Read more here.
Gov. Greg Abbott resists calls for statewide shelter-in-place; moves to expand hospital capacity
Abbott said he would applaud some local authorities for issuing such an order, while he would remain flexible on strategies as the new coronavirus continues to spread. Read more here
Abbot: Expect Massive Increases in COVID-19 Cases
The governor warned that as wide scale testing for Covid-19 ramps up, Texans can expect a dramatic increase in the number of cases in the weeks ahead. “As of tonight, there have been 158 people in Texas who’ve tested positive,” he said. Read more here
Advocacy organization calls on insurers
Attorney group representing workers’ compensation insurers to accept most work-related coronavirus claims. Read the article here. (subscription required)
What COVID-19 Could Mean For The Insurance Sector
Protecting the health and safety of employees, setting up work from home systems and protocols, dealing with the implcations to agents and brokers, and managing the financial fallout are all areas insurers must navigate as the coronavirus outbreak expands. Read the article here.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott closes bars, restaurants and schools as he anticipates tens of thousands could test positive for coronavirus
“This is a very rapidly spreading disease, but it’s one that we are prepared to respond to,” Abbott said, hours after he took far-reaching steps to contain the spread of the virus across Texas, closing restaurants and schools, among other things. Read the article here.
Coronavirus will radically alter the U.S.
What happens next depends largely on us — our government, politicians, health institutions and, in particular, 328 million inhabitants of this country — all making tiny decisions on an daily basis with outsize consequences for our collective future. Read the article here.
AM Best to test insurers for coronavirus impact
AM Best said it is developing stress testing that it will conduct on its rated insurance companies’ balance sheets to gauge the impact of the COVID-19 virus. Also, Fitch Ratings downgraded its outlook for Allstate from positive to stable due to coronavirus impacts. Read the article here.
10 States responding most aggressively to coronavirus threats
According to Wallethub, some of the least-prepared states are those that have historically ranked low in health care access and have high rates of uninsured population, including Nevada, Texas and Missouri. Read the article here.
First lawsuit filed: business interruption insurance
A New Orleans restaurant is suing Lloyd’s of London, hoping a judge will order the U.K. based insurance market to cover losses caused by government-ordered closures due to the coronavirus. The suit against Lloyd’s of London was filed on March 16, seeking a declaratory judgment to proactively force the insurance carrier to pay for losses from a pandemic. Read more here
Impact on workers’ comp limited but some workers may be covered
While compensability issues will play out case-by-case, workers’ compensation insurers in at least two states have decided that they will guarantee workers’ compensation benefits for health care workers and first responders. Read the article here.
Coronavirus work-from-home response may expand cyber risk
Work-from-home employees may be especially vulnerable to phishing expeditions. Aon said there have already been reports of phishing emails being sent out posing as alerts regarding COVID-19. Read more here.
ICT Press Release: Coronavirus: A forum for fraud
The coronavirus has created a forum where solicitations for donations, promises of cures, tax refund claims, among other scams, are making their way into everyday emails. Various industries including insurance have been targeted as customers begin receiving correspondence from what they believe to be a known and trusted source. Read the press release here.