New Rules for Agencies
Governor Inslee published the Professional
Services COVID-19 Requirements to help insurance agencies and other
professional services keep a healthy workplace in accordance with state and
federal law, and comply with COVID-19 worksite-specific safety practices.
Checklist to Help You Reopen
The Big I and our partner organizations are in the process of creating tools to help insurance agencies and your customers open up for business in this new world. All employers must take a fresh look at their physical workspace, their workplace practices, and their communication and training of employees in order to limit the spread of the coronavirus and to protect their employees and clients. To assist you with these efforts, Affinity HR Group, which is part of Big I Hires, has developed a checklist for employers to consider when planning to reopen.
License Renewal Extensions
Commissioner Kreidler filed emergency
rules that allows producers to request
in writing an extension until 7/31 if your license expires between
PPP $$ Available & Loan Forgiveness
There is still significant funding left in Paycheck Protection
Program so insurance agents are encouraged to apply for a forgivable loan. The Big I's InsurBanc has processed millions
of dollars in PPP loans to agents, ranging in size from a few thousand dollars
to several million. They will walk you through the easy process and tell you
how much you can borrow.
- The SBA on 5/13 stated that
"any borrower that, together with its affiliates, received PPP loans
with an original principal amount of less than $2 million will be deemed
to have made the required certification concerning the necessity of the
loan request in good faith." This should alleviate any concern
from an agency that they don't qualify.
Waiving Deductibles and Copays For Testing
Commissioner Kreidler extended his emergency order to health
insurers for 30 days, requiring them to waive copays and deductibles for
testing for coronavirus. Insurers also must continue allowing a one-time early
refill for prescriptions and suspending any prior authorization for treatment
or testing of COVID-19.
Deadline Extended for Property Claims
Commissioner Kreidler filed
an emergency order that requires insurers to extend deadlines 60 days
relating to withheld depreciation for policyholders who are in the process of
completing home or building repairs as part of a property loss claim under a
replacement cost policy.
New Federal CARES Act
The Federal Cares Act created the PPP loan program which as of 4/17 is out of money but more is expected to by allocated by Congress. The additional funds are expected to go even quicker insurance
agencies are encouraged to complete an application on InsurBanc's website so your application
can be submitted immediately after the funds are available. If your
agency maintains your payroll, the loan will be forgiven.
OIC Business Interruption Study
polled Washington state insurers and found that FM Global Insurance Group
is the only carrier to offer coverage for a pandemic event through their base
policy and 15 offered limited coverage through endorsements.
New Federal Sick Leave Law
Recently Congress passed The Families First Coronavirus Response Act,
which goes into effect this Thursday, April 2. Click here to see a detailed analysis of the new
law which requires employers to provide 10 business days of paid sick leave
to employees which will be reimbursed by the federal government through
tax credits. Employers are required to post this notice of
employee rights under the Act to educate employees
Protect Yourself From an E & O Claim
IIABW has been made aware that some insurance carriers are directing their agencies to deny certain claims related to the COVID-19/coronavirus - most specifically business income claims. The Big I strongly advises that agencies NOT make a coverage determination on behalf of any insurance carrier or deny any claims. Click here for more information.
SwissRe has written two documents to help protect your agency from
an E & O claim:
Resources Available to Employers