Design firms taking on more liability risk, but BIM insurance is available

August 11, 2009 |

Insurance providers are an important element of A/E firms business practices and overall risk management program efforts. Insurance carriers in this specialized segment have valuable insights identifying trends and risk factors for firms. 

Obtaining information directly from insurance provides helps A/E firms obtain vital information that will help them in making better decisions, weathering this difficult economic period. Based on the challenges and publicity surrounding the insurance industry, it is important to know what trends insurance carriers are seeing as well as practices they are using to mitigate their own risk ensuring performance and profitability. This survey focused on obtaining first-hand information from the specialized A/E PL insurance providers on trends and impact's observed driven by the economic downturn.

• How are economic conditions effecting insurance providers?

• How are insurance providers minimizing their risk?

• Trends for A/E firms: Are firms accepting more risk?

• Recommendations for A/E firms.

• Offerings available by carriers to assist A/E firms.

An independent, third-party survey was conducted by SmartRisk LLC, a risk and performance management consultancy. The survey was conducted of insurance providers specialized in professional liability (PL) insurance for A/E and environmental consulting firms. Survey objective; obtain information directly from the specialized insurance carriers providing a platform identifying trends and impact's from their perspective driven by the economic downturn. This was an open survey. Twenty (20) specialized insurance providers offering PL insurance for the A/E industry were invited to participate. Seventeen (17) insurance providers participated providing valuable insights for the A/E community and other industry groups and professionals.

Specialized A/E Professional Liability (PL) Insurance Providers Participants:

1. ACE USA, Chris Calnon

2. Arrowhead Design Ins. Div. / Hudson Ins. Group, Jack Doran

3. AVRECO, Linda Deiss

4. Beazley Insurance Company, Dana Hughes

5. Benchmark Professional Insurance Services, Inc., Kitty Dimit

6. Catlin Design Professional, Tom Bongi

7. Euclid Managers - Scottsdale Insurance Company, Brian Van Cleave

8. Insight Insurance Services, Inc., Michelle A. Duffett

9. Ironshore Insurance Services, Christine DeFelice

10. James River Insurance Company, Ed Neuberger

11. Liberty International Underwriters, Inc., Robert Cunningham

12. RA&MCO Insurance Services, Jim Bechter

13. State Farm Fire and Casualty; State Farm Specialty, Lonette Pearson

14. Terra Insurance Company (A Risk Retention Group), Dave Coduto

15. Travelers, Bill Farran

16. Victor O. Schinnerer/CAN, Kate Enos Frownfelte

17. Zurich, Mike Davis

Key Survey Findings

The survey report identifies insurance and risk trends, offerings and services supporting the A/E market segment. The following are a few

of the key findings of the survey. Detailed information and analysis can be found within the survey report.

• 82%: Providers indicating A/E firms are accepting more risk

• 36.3% Premium rates down 5-20%

• 73%: Firms not purchasing insurance, lowering limits, increasing deductibles

• 53%: Providers offering risk management services to all firms

• 35.3%: Economic climate has increased claims

• 45%: Rates for 2009 and 2010 indicated as even

• 75%: Providers offering BIM coverage in policy language

• 41.2%: Providerss offering mid-term quotes

To purchase the full report go to:

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