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Today’s Insurance News
Source: Insurance Journal
California Congressmen Introduce Earthquake Mitigation Tax Incentives
Don Jergler - March 22, 2017, 8:32 pm
A pair of Congressmen from California today introduced the Earthquake Mitigation Incentive and Tax Parity Act of 2017 to exclude incentives for residential seismic retrofits from federal taxation. The act was introduced by Reps. Mike Thompson, D-St. Helena, and Paul …
Washington Commissioner Supporting Strict Distracted Driving Bills
Don Jergler - March 22, 2017, 7:26 pm
Washington Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler is advocating for two distracted driving bills that the state Legislature is considering. House Bill 1371, sponsored by Rep. Jessyn Farrell, and Senate Bill 5289, sponsored by Sen. Ann Rivers, would make the law about …
Supreme Court Rules Garment Design Elements Copyrightable
Andrew G. Simpson - March 22, 2017, 7:24 pm
The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that basic elements in cheerleader uniform designs merit copyright protection, handing a victory to the top American maker of the garments in a decision with serious implications for the fashion industry. The justices ruled 6-2 to …
California Workers’ Comp Report Looks at Spinal Fusion Claims
Don Jergler - March 22, 2017, 7:18 pm
A study on the use of spinal fusion surgeries in California workers’ compensation shows that in 60 percent of spinal fusion claims the initial report of injury was for a sprain or strain, a majority of the fusions occurred within …
Bickmore in California Names Sharma Finance Manager
Don Jergler - March 22, 2017, 7:06 pm
Sacramento, Calif.-based Bickmore has named Ritesh Sharma a manager in its finance and accounting services department. Sharma will act as the finance manager for three joint power authorities. He will direct accounting and financial activities and serve as the primary …
Insurance Information Institute Names Palmer as Head of Communications
Andrew G. Simpson - March 22, 2017, 4:47 pm
Kristin S. Palmer has been named senior vice president and head of Communications at the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.). Palmer was previously vice president, Media Relations, for the AARP, a nonprofit organization for retirees with nearly 38 million members. During her time at AARP, …
10 More Facts on How Employee Substance Misuse Impacts Businesses
- March 22, 2017, 3:45 pm
More than 70 percent  of U.S. employers are feeling the direct impact of prescription drug misuse in their workplaces, according to a recent survey by the National Safety Council. The survey also found that although 71 percent of employers agree that prescription …
Fatal Allergic Reaction Leads to Suit Against Louisiana Doughnut Shop
Stephanie K. Jones - March 22, 2017, 3:31 pm
A Georgia man is suing a Louisiana doughnut shop over claims that his father died of an allergic reaction after eating an apple fritter. The son’s attorneys on filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Dynasty Donuts LLC, a Lafayette company …
T-Mobile 911 Disruptions in Dallas Offer Cautionary Tale
Stephanie K. Jones - March 22, 2017, 3:28 pm
Dallas has been experiencing disruptions in its 911 service that began in October and at one point last week resulted in 360 calls being placed on hold. More dispatchers have been assigned to field 911 calls and technological glitches have …
California City Seeks to Improve Safety by Scaning License Plates
Don Jergler - March 22, 2017, 3:17 pm
A California city plans to scan the license plates of all incoming cars by placing stationary cameras at key intersections in a bid to boost public safety. The seaside city of Carlsbad will spend $1 million to add cameras at …
9 Homes Destroyed in Oklahoma Wildfire
Stephanie K. Jones - March 22, 2017, 3:17 pm
Fire officials are suggesting a blaze that has destroyed at least nine homes in eastern Oklahoma and forced the evacuation of more than 100 others may have been intentionally set. Highway 9 Volunteer Fire Department chief Danny Choate told KOKI-TV …
Former County Commissioner in Oregon Counter Sues in Marijuana Case
Don Jergler - March 22, 2017, 3:14 pm
A former Jackson County commissioner accused in a lawsuit of bilking investors to finance a pot shop has filed a counterclaim. Doug Breidenthal filed the lawsuit contending his professional reputation has been damaged, the Mail Tribune reported. “As a result …
Overland Park, Kansas, Apartment Building Fire Ignites Houses
Stephanie K. Jones - March 22, 2017, 3:14 pm
A huge fire at an apartment building under construction in suburban Kansas City has sparked fires at several homes blocks away. The eight-alarm fire broke out about 3:30 p.m. on March 20 at the multimillion-dollar CityPlace development in Overland Park, …
Travel Businesses in California’s Big Sur Community Reeling After Bridge Closure
Don Jergler - March 22, 2017, 3:10 pm
Almost all the hotels, restaurants and state parks cut off when a bridge on the Central California coast crumbled last month remain closed, but Kurt Mayer chose to keep his deli and taproom open — even though it’s costing him. …
Illinois Places Public Service Insurance Co. into Rehabilitation
Stephanie K. Jones - March 22, 2017, 3:09 pm
The Illinois Department of Insurance reported that Public Service Insurance Co. (Public Service) and its parent corporation Public Service Mutual Holding Co. have been placed into rehabilitation. Policies will continue in force and policyholder claims will continue to be paid …
Pinnacol Issues $50M in Workers’ Comp Dividends to Colorado Employers
Don Jergler - March 22, 2017, 2:52 pm
Colorado workers’ compensation insurer Pinnacol Assurance is distributing $50 million in dividend checks this month to its policyholders. More than 53,000 employers throughout the state — roughly 94.2 percent of the company’s policyholders — will receive a dividend in recognition …
Swiss Re Names Mitchell as Head of Property & Specialty Reinsurance
- March 22, 2017, 2:47 pm
Swiss Re announced that Mike Mitchell, currently head Property Underwriting and Property & Casualty Facultative, Asia, will succeed Edouard Schmid as Swiss Re’s head Property & Specialty Reinsurance, effective July 1, 2017. He will also serve as a member of …
R&Q Acquires Captive Insurer from Fortune 500 Engine Manufacturer
- March 22, 2017, 2:25 pm
Randall & Quilter Investment Holdings Ltd. (R&Q) announced the acquisition of ICDC Ltd., a captive insurer of an American Fortune 500 company, for an undisclosed sum. The name of the former parent of the captive was not released. The company, …
Supreme Court OK with Delay in Bringing Patent Infringement Suits
Andrew G. Simpson - March 22, 2017, 2:03 pm
A U.S. Supreme Court ruling on Tuesday in a lawsuit over adult diapers will make it more difficult for companies accused of patent infringement to shoot down lawsuits because the plaintiffs waited too long to bring them. In a 7-1 decision, the justices …
RSA Begins Trading on London Market Placing Platform, PPL
- March 22, 2017, 1:48 pm
International insurer RSA has begun trading on the London insurance market’s electronic placing platform, PPL (Placing Platform Ltd.), which enables brokers and underwriters to quote, negotiate, bind and endorse business using one market-wide system. RSA’s Profin underwriting team is now …
Backers of Legal Pot Urge Massachusetts Panel to Hold Off on Changing Law
Elizabeth Blosfield - March 22, 2017, 1:40 pm
Backers of legalized recreational marijuana urged Massachusetts legislators Monday to hold off, at least for now, on making any significant changes to a law voters approved in November. The appeal came during the first public hearing held by a special …
From Fiduciary Rule to Overtime: What to Expect from Trump Labor Nominee Acosta
Andrew G. Simpson - March 22, 2017, 1:29 pm
By the time President Donald Trump’s first nominee for labor secretary withdrew from consideration, there was little doubt where he stood on the big issues facing the department. In contrast, his replacement, Alexander Acosta, heads into his hearing Wednesday with …
Virginia Governor Signs Bill Giving $1.55M to Exonerated Man
- March 22, 2017, 1:13 pm
Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has signed a bill to provide $1.55 million to a man who spent more than three decades in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. Keith Allen Harward was released from prison in April 2016 at …
Technology Being Blamed for Driving Up Massachusetts Car Insurance Rates
- March 22, 2017, 1:07 pm
Auto insurance rates in Massachusetts are on the rise and technology is to blame. Industry experts tell The Boston Globe that drivers distracted by smartphones are crashing more often and those cars are now more expensive to repair because they’re loaded …
Thunderstorms Just as Costly to Insurers as Hurricanes: Study
Andrew G. Simpson - March 22, 2017, 12:55 pm
Risk to U.S. property from thunderstorms is as high as from hurricanes, according to new research finding that for the past decade, severe convective storms have been the largest annual aggregated risk peril to the U.S. insurance industry. The average annual …
Higher Arctic Temperatures Likely to Shift Global Weather in 2017: WMO
L.S. Howard - March 22, 2017, 12:51 pm
Unusually warm weather in the Arctic is helping shift weather patterns this year from North America to the Middle East, after global warming shattered records in 2016, according to the World Meteorological Organization. Rising ocean temperatures that are melting polar …
Maryland-Based Chesapeake Employers’ Insurance Company Promotes Adelman
- March 22, 2017, 12:50 pm
Chesapeake Employers’ Insurance Company, a Towson, Md.-based provider of workers’ compensation insurance, has promoted Joan Adelman to vice president of legal services. In her new role, Adelman is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the legal department, including supervision of …
BHSI Offers Professional Liability, Network Security & Privacy Cover in Canada
- March 22, 2017, 11:31 am
Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance (BHSI) introduced its Professional First Professional Liability and Network Security & Privacy Policy and announced it has appointed Geoffrey Kendrick as head of Professional Lines in Canada. BHSI’s new Professional First Professional Liability and Network Security …
JLT Re Partners with KatRisk to Expand Modeling Capability in Canada
- March 22, 2017, 11:07 am
JLT Re, the London-based reinsurance broker and consultancy, has combined forces with flood modeling company, KatRisk, to enhance its flood risk modeling capabilities for clients across Canada. Berkeley, Calif.-based KatRisk’s suite of flood risk modeling tools includes both flood inundation …
India’s Bank of Baroda Eyes Sale of Insurer, Asset Management Stakes
L.S. Howard - March 22, 2017, 10:45 am
Bank of Baroda, India’s third-largest state-run bank by assets, is considering a sale of some of the minority stakes it holds in its insurance and asset-management ventures, according to people familiar with the matter. The Mumbai-based bank is seeking to …

Southwest Risk is proud to announce one of our brokers has just been named a 2016 Young Gun by Insurance Business of America. Congratulations Justin Kotrla!

Southwest Risk continues to actively recruit seasoned insurance professionals to join our winning team!

Meet Steven Ateek – Vice President at Southwest Risk specializing in Construction, Energy, Products and Habitational.

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