Members of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners' Life Insurance and Annuities Committee voted last month to terminate the Life Insurance Illustrations Working Group. The move could encourage states to move forward with their own life insurance policy disclosure requirements.
The coronavirus pandemic accelerated a technological shift in the insurance industry, writes Joseph D'Souza of ProNavigator. D'Souza highlights three trends likely to have a significant impact on the industry this year: mobile apps, blockchain technology and artificial intelligence.
A Milliman report prepared for APCIA shows allocated loss adjustment expenses for nine commercial auto insurers increased 5.1% from 2015 to 2019, while the percentage of closed claims with attorney involvement rose to 29.9%. APCIA's James Whittle says "attorney involvement is simply increasing in all matters," and the association is working to curtail so-called phantom damages and medical buildup and is seeking greater transparency in litigation finance.
General Motors' OnStar subsidiary and American Family Insurance are seeking Arizona, Illinois and Michigan regulators' approval for an auto insurance product that uses driver behavior as a factor in setting rates. GM hopes to have approval in the first quarter of this year and expand the product to at least a dozen additional states.
Forty percent of people said they are likely to purchase insurance online in the future, according to the Acxiom Market Pulse Insurance Covid Study. However, the percentage of respondents who said it is "essential" or "very important" to work with an agent rose from 41% in the second quarter of 2020 to 49% in the third quarter of 2021.
A bill filed in Nebraska would end the statute of limitations for lawsuits alleging child sexual abuse. Korby Gilbertson, a lobbyist for APCIA, says the legislation could result in organizations facing litigation even if they are under new leadership that had no involvement in or awareness of alleged abuse before their tenure.
US District Judge Jeffrey Brown has paused the enforcement of President Joe Biden's executive order requiring federal workers to receive COVID-19 vaccinations. The order "amounts to a presidential mandate that all federal employees consent to vaccination against COVID-19 or lose their jobs," but "the President's authority is not that broad," Brown wrote.
A storm system hit North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia with ice and snow totals of at least 6 inches in some places over the weekend. North Carolina had more than 900 traffic collisions amid the storm, Gov. Roy Cooper's office said.
Population growth and migration to certain parts of the country are heightening risk posed by secondary perils, such as wildfires, an A.M. Best report notes. "As we have seen with population growth in wildfire-exposed areas in California and other Western states -- including the recent fires in Colorado -- higher economic and insured losses are occurring, despite natural catastrophes of lesser intensity," says David Blades, associate director of industry research and analytics at A.M. Best.
Property and casualty insurance results were affected by catastrophe losses, inflation and other factors in 2021, says James Auden of Fitch Ratings' North American insurance rating group. "In 2021, we are expecting a combined ratio of approximately 99%, which is the same as we've seen in the prior three years," Auden says.
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