In late 2018 the National Risk Retention Association, frustrated by difficulties its members experienced when registering to do business in several non-domiciliary states, petitioned the National Association of Insurance Commissioners for assistance. Jon Harkavy of Risk Services examines the current state of play.
Dermot Finnerty of White Rock Group shines the spotlight on how changing market conditions are driving demand for risk retention (cell and captive) solutions.
Captives have traditionally used reinsurance as a way to shift risk off their balance sheets, but there are numerous other advantages to tapping the reinsurance market. Reinsurers are developing sophisticated and often bespoke tools to help captives to manage their own unique sets of exposures, says Desmond Bohan of BMS Re US.
US states have been applying the finishing touches to their captive insurance regimes, making themselves as attractive as possible to eligible captive owners who are considering where to base their captive. The most desirable captive owners have considerable leverage in negotiating special treatment from state regulators, argues Michael Mead of M.R. Mead and Company.
Too many insurance agencies ignore captives. This is an increasingly risky strategy, as their clients may be looking to get into this market. If their existing agent or broker cannot help them make the move, clients may look to a competitor who can, say Jeremy Colombik and John Dohn of MSI.
The hardening market has encouraged commercial property companies to reconsider their insurance arrangements. Captives offer numerous advantages that can translate to better or cheaper coverage, says Gary Osborne of Risk Partners.
For the first time in a long while rates are on the rise across almost all classes of business. Although it may not seem like it to the insurance buyer, many insureds have long been beneficiaries of an artificially soft market. Now, SMEs are assessing their options, and there are several potentially attractive ones in the captives space, says Nate Reznicek of CIC Services.
Vermont is in the process of updating its captive insurance regime, with a bill currently being considered by the legislature that will make a number of tweaks designed to make it easier to do business and increase transparency. David Provost and Ian Davis talked about the bill with Captive International.
With continued reports of double-digit rate increases for some coverages, companies are looking to analytics to leverage their position with insurers and create new strategies for dealing with a hardening market, say Sigma’s Lori Ussery and Michelle Bradley.
The Internal Revenue Service has scored some notable victories against abusive micro-captive insurance tax shelters in recent years, with settlement offers to some 200 captives last September earning it floods of cash from captives eager to end their uncertainty. For those that did not receive such a letter however, the 831(b) scandal is far from over, as Solomon Teague reports.