Welcome to iLeads Insurance Market Minute, where we bring you the latest, most relevant news regarding the insurance market. Last week you were reading Munich Re Stops Selling Pandemic Business Cover. This week we’re bringing you:
Ohio governor signs COVID-19 legislation*
Gov. Mike DeWine, R-Ohio, has signed into law legislation that protects businesses and others from lawsuits arising from exposure to COVID-19, so long as they do not show intentional misconduct.
The legislation follows similar laws that have been enacted by Georgia, Idaho, Nevada, and Tennessee, according to tracking by law firm Barnes & Thornburg LLP.
Ohio’s H.B. 606, which was signed into law by Gov. DeWine on Monday, provides civil immunity to businesses as well as schools, health care providers, business, and other entities from lawsuits arising from the exposure, transmission, or contraction of COVID-19, or any of the virus’ mutation, so long as these entities do not demonstrate reckless, intentional or willful misconduct, according to the legislation.
California governor signs COVID-19 presumption, outbreak reporting laws*
California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Thursday signed into law measures to make it easier for front-line workers to receive workers comp benefits if they contract COVID-19 on the job and require employers to promptly report potential coronavirus outbreaks to public health authorities.
S.B. 1159 creates a presumption that first responders, health care workers, and police officers who test positive for COVID-19 within 14 days of performing labor or services contracted the virus at work and are entitled to workers’ compensation unless their employers can show that they contracted the virus elsewhere.
Employers grapple with COVID-19 presumption laws*
Employers nationwide are following the legislative push to accept COVID-19 claims by the presumption in worker’s compensation, changes that aren’t necessarily guaranteeing that such infectious disease claims will be greenlighted but instead promise a surge in litigation and confusion, experts say.
Given the new laws’ many nuances, employers are “worried about staying on top” of the presumption trend, said Ralph Touch, Fleetwood, Pennsylvania-based senior vice president of claim operations at Gallagher Bassett Services Inc.
“For the very first time we have the entire insurance industry learning new laws on the fly,” he said. “These are very big changes, and they are happening quickly. We are applying a disease (to worker’s compensation) that you could get walking down the street.
Nationwide study reveals approach agents need to take to consumers*
Eighty-four percent (84%) of consumers are reevaluating their budgets and insurance coverage in light of the current economic uncertainty, according to the latest research from Nationwide’s Agent Authority study.
The study found that consumers felt working with a trustworthy and accessible insurance agent was a priority – but there are ways agents can enhance those relationships, Nationwide said.
“Our most recent Agent Authority survey shows agents are bringing immense value to consumers, especially in times of so much uncertainty,” said Jeff Rommel, senior vice president of property and casualty sales and distribution at Nationwide. “Consumers are identifying new opportunities for agents to step up and strengthen relationships at a time when their personal lines clients are taking a closer look at their insurance needs.”
What customers want
According to the survey:
- 44% of consumers are reviewing one or more of their insurance policies.
- 31% looked further into what their insurance policy covers.
- 26% contacted their agent to discuss coverage.
- 13% of consumers asked their agents to look at different carriers to find a better price or coverage.
- In addition to insurance, some consumers are looking to their agents for guidance on topics like retirement (26%) and cybersecurity (16%).
- Consumers are evenly split on their preference for an in-person vs. digital experience with their agent; 51% prefer to have an agent where they’re located, while 49% prefer a digital experience.
Finding highly affordable leads to keep sales coming in
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