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09/20/2018 01:00 AM
Banks and Insurers Have Improved Their Cyber Defenses
Despite the volume of cyberattacks doubling in 2017, banks and insurance firm firms are closing the gap on cyber attacks, having stopped four in five of all breach attempts last year. According to a study by Accenture, financial services firms …

09/20/2018 01:00 AM
U.S. Home Price Appreciation in Highest-Risk Areas Outpaced Overall Rate Over Last Decade
Natural hazards are good at grabbing headlines, but they aren’t as good as dissuading people from buying homes in high-risk areas, a new report shows. Median home prices in areas that are in the top 80 percentile for risk of …

09/20/2018 01:00 AM
Assurant Invests in Connected Car Services Startup
Niche market specialty insurer Assurant has invested in a technology startup focused on connected car services. The New York-based company declined to disclose the level of investment in Mojio, a technology platform and software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider with offices in Silicon …

09/20/2018 01:00 AM
Government Ends Criminal Case Over GM Handling of Ignition Switch Defect
A federal judge in New York on Wednesday dismissed a criminal case brought against General Motors Co. in 2015 over the largest U.S. automaker’s handling of an ignition-switch defect linked to 124 deaths. U.S. District Judge Alison Nathan approved a …

09/20/2018 12:37 AM
Florida Appeals Court Deals Insurers a Win in AOB Fight with Policy Language Ruling
In a significant turn of events in the insurance industry’s fight against Florida assignment of benefits (AOB) abuse, Florida’s Fourth District Court of Appeal (DCA) has ruled that an insurer’s anti-assignment provision was not prohibited. But the battle isn’t over …

09/20/2018 12:32 AM
Alera Group Acquires Champion Benefits of Atlanta
Alera Group, a national employee benefits, property and casualty, risk management and wealth management firm, has acquired Champion Benefits of Atlanta. The company provides integrated, strategic benefit plans for clients with a fully integrated team including healthcare consultants, pharmacists, nurses, …

09/20/2018 12:24 AM
OSHA Fines Contractors $86K Over Miami Bridge Collapse
Contractors that worked on the bridge near a Florida university that collapsed, killing six people, have been fined more than $86,000 for workplace violations. The Miami Herald reported Tuesday that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued the fines for …

09/20/2018 12:20 AM
West Virginia Spared Worst of Florence Rains, Floods
Worried West Virginians got a reprieve when forecasts of potential devastating floods didn’t come to fruition from the remnants of Hurricane Florence. The storm brought 1 to 2 inches (2.5 to 5 centimeters) of rain in most parts of the …

09/19/2018 10:11 PM
Kitchen Torch Behind Fire at Home of Michigan GOP Lt. Gov. Candidate
Republican lieutenant governor candidate Lisa Posthumus Lyons says the fire that burned down her western Michigan home started after one of her children used a kitchen torch inside the attached garage. She said at a news conference on Sept. 17 …

09/19/2018 06:29 PM
Largest Wildfire in California History Officially 100% Contained
Officials announced on Wednesday that the Mendocino Complex Fire, the largest wildfire in California’s history, is now 100 percent contained. The blaze burned a combined 459,123 acres, destroyed 280 structures including 157 residences, killed one firefighter and injured four others. …

09/19/2018 02:00 PM
John Hancock Will Only Sell Interactive Life Insurance with Fitness Data Tracking
John Hancock, one of the oldest and largest North American life insurers, will stop underwriting traditional life insurance and instead sell only interactive policies that track fitness and health data through wearable devices and smartphones, the company said on Wednesday. …

09/19/2018 12:54 PM
S.S. Nesbitt Adds Fountain as Market Executive in Alabama ß Photo
S.S. Nesbitt, a Southeastern insurance agency and division of EBSCO Industries Inc., has appointed Senior Vice President L. Dickerson (Dick) Fountain as Market executive in Huntsville, Ala. Over the past year, S.S. Nesbitt’s Huntsville office has aggressively expanded both its …

09/19/2018 12:46 PM
Wisconsin August Storm Damage Tops $233M
The damage total from flooding and storms in Wisconsin in August continues to rise and now approaches a quarter of a billion dollars. Gov. Scott Walker tweeted on Sept. 18 that the preliminary damages are nearly $234 million, up from …

09/19/2018 12:38 PM
Kistler Joins Illinois’ Alera Group as Director of Business Development
Alera Group, a national employee benefits, property/casualty, risk management and wealth management firm headquartered in Deerfield, Illinois, has appointed Matt Kistler as director of Business Development. Kistler will play a critical part in Alera Group’s continued national expansion and growth. …

09/19/2018 12:35 PM
Florence Floods: Hurricane Rating System Fails to Account for Deadly Rain
When meteorologists downgraded Hurricane Florence from a powerful Category 4 storm to a Category 2 and then a Category 1, Wayne Mills figured he could stick it out. He regrets it. The Neuse River, normally 150 feet away, lapped near …

09/19/2018 12:30 PM
Sullivan Tapped to Lead Transportation Unit at Midlands Management
Wholesale insurance services firm, Midlands Management Corp., headquartered in Oklahoma City, appointed Mark Sullivan as leader of its Transportation team. He is based in Dallas. Sullivan joined Midlands in 2010 as an associate marketing representative and later was promoted to …

09/19/2018 12:28 PM
Limits on Doctors’ Marijuana Patients Tossed in Louisiana
Amid concerns about bottlenecks to access, Louisiana regulators have agreed to loosen limits on how many medical marijuana patients doctors authorized to dispense cannabis can treat. Louisiana’s State Board of Medical Examiners voted 8-1 to remove a cap established in …

09/19/2018 12:24 PM
Copper Thefts Knock 3 Arkansas Radio Stations Off Air
Three Jonesboro, Arkansas, radio stations are back on the air after copper thieves disrupted operations and damaged the transmitter building and a backup generator. The outages affecting East Arkansas Broadcasters stations KIYS, KIYS HD2 and KBTM were discovered about 1:20 …

09/19/2018 12:10 PM
Ohio’s Hylant Launches Haven Re Group Captive for Middle-Market Businesses
Toledo, Ohio-based privately held independent insurance brokerage, Hylant, has launched Haven Re, a primary casualty, heterogeneous group captive designed to provide well-performing middle-market businesses an attractive cost-saving option. Haven Re is ideal for middle-market businesses with a strong commitment to …

09/19/2018 11:05 AM
Seismic Activity Increases Around Alaska Volcano
The Alaska Volcano Observatory is keeping watch on a remote volcano that’s showing signs of erupting. The observatory this week increased the alert level from “advisory” to “watch” at Semisopochnoi (SEM-ee-sah-POTCH-noy) in the Aleutian Islands. The volcano is on an …

09/19/2018 11:01 AM
Oregon Judge Won’t Take Unprecedented Step to Let Animals Sue
A judge has tossed a lawsuit filed by animal rights activists in the name of a once-neglected horse, finding that animals don’t have a right to sue. The Oregonian/OregonLive reported in doing so, Washington County Pro Tem Judge John Knowles …

09/19/2018 10:59 AM
Big Increase in Pedestrian Fatalities in Hawaii
The state Department of Transportation says pedestrian fatalities have increased by 525 percent from the same time last year. The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported 25 pedestrians have died as of Sept. 13 this year compared with four deaths last year in …

09/19/2018 09:56 AM
Exploring the Jump in Mega Workers’ Compensation Claims
Mega workers’ comp claims – losses exceeding $10 million – jumped in 2016, according to a new report by the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI). It’s unclear if this is a one time occurrence or a new trend for …

09/19/2018 09:29 AM
Why Small Mutual P/C Insurers, Insurtechs May Need Each Other: A.M. Best
Technology-oriented insurance startups and established small mutual property/casualty insurers may find they are better off partnering than competing. Mutual property/casualty insurance companies continue to face heightened competition amid an insurance industry that is being transformed by technological, economic and demographic …

09/19/2018 09:08 AM
New Hampshire’s Optisure Risk Partners Hires Needham
Optisure Risk Partners, based in Manchester, N.H., has hired Beth Needham as insurance operations manager and best practices leader. In this role, she will serve as a contributing member of the Optisure leadership team, offering insurance operations experience in service, …

09/19/2018 08:58 AM
Alliant Insurance Services Launches Maryland-Based Imperium Consulting Group
Alliant Insurance Services, a Newport Beach, Calif.-headquartered specialty insurance brokerage firm, has launched Imperium Consulting Group, a specialized advisory business that works with clients to better manage commercial risks as well as resolve complex claims and disputes. Imperium is based …

09/19/2018 08:44 AM
Lawsuit Targets Massachusetts Utility Over Deadly Gas Explosions
A resident of a Massachusetts city rocked by last week’s deadly gas blasts that damaged dozens of homes sued utility operator NiSource Inc on Tuesday, accusing it of inadequately maintaining its distribution system. The proposed class action lawsuit targets NiSource …

09/19/2018 08:41 AM
Americans’ Interest in Self-Driving Cars Goes in Reverse
Less than half of Americans (43 percent) are interested in utilizing self-driving cars, down from 53 percent last year. According to an annual sharing economy index by Allianz Global Assistance, the lack of interest is primarily attributed to safety concerns …

09/19/2018 08:37 AM
After Blasts, Massachusetts Gas Customers Face Long Wait
The blast of high-pressure natural gas that led to dozens of home explosions last week in Massachusetts very likely damaged the system’s antiquated pipeline network and could lead to a long period of testing and repairs before full service is …

09/19/2018 05:52 AM
Lloyd’s Market Association & Lloyd’s Issue Policy Documents in Preparation for Brexit
A new suite of policy documentation, to support the underwriting of risks from the European Economic Area by Lloyd’s Brussels, has been published. The new documents were prepared by the Lloyd’s Market Association’s (LMA)* wordings team, working closely with the …

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