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Insurance News 02/2009



The Risks of Life Insurance (Washington Post)
It was a head-spinning week for anyone with a life insurance policy.

Finding insurance an extra problem for the unemployed (Boston Globe)
The state's jobless rate has hit a 15-year high, and for the people behind the statistics, there is a special urgency. Massachusetts, unlike other states, requires nearly everyone to have health insurance - even if they have lost their job and, with it, their health coverage. Going without insurance for more than three months can result in a stiff penalty. ...

How do we cure Florida's sick property insurance system? (Sun-Sentinel)
South Florida, we have a problem. A hurricane hasn't hit the region the last three years, but there's a huge storm brewing (again) over property insurance.

Stockholders sue N.C. mortgage insurance company (WRAL.com Raleigh)
Stockholders are suing a mortgage insurance company claiming it violated federal securities law.

Management of Al-Manara Insurance Company enhances its efficiency with The Takaful Certificate (AME Info)
Mr. Omar Hamed, Deputy General Manager of Al-Manara Insurance Company, was awarded The Takaful Certificate by JWZ Insurance Solutions, based in Bahrain, and approved by the Chartered Insurance Institute in the United Kingdom.

Nepal mulls introducing unemployment insurance system (People's Daily)
The representatives of industrialists and trade unions in Nepal are making efforts to introduce the unemployment insurance system in the country, local news website Nepal news reported on Sunday. The report said they have reached an agreement regarding the basic framework of the law governing the unemployment insurance system. The proposed unemployment insurance scheme will cover workers ...

National rules threaten midwife insurance crisis (The Australian)
CANBERRA is considering underwriting insurance for independent midwives rather than risk losing all those now in private practice.

WHO GETS WHAT: Billions for health care insurance (AP via Yahoo! Malaysia News)
It will get vastly cheaper for most people to keep health insurance after losing a job if the government's stimulus plan becomes law.

WHO GETS WHAT: Billions for health care insurance (AP via Yahoo! News)
It will get vastly cheaper for most people to keep health insurance after losing a job if the government's stimulus plan becomes law. Some nickel and dime cuts in health coverage for the poor will be reversed, too. Geek jobs in medicine will grow.

Council paying water, insurance bills today (The Pasadena Citizen)
Just like anyone else, the city of Pasadena has bills to pay. This week, it’s the water bill and insurance.

A part-time passion is also insurance (The Malay Mail)
Insurance officer V. Nathan, 28, is now wellprepared for the effects of the possible economic downturn.

Device may lower car insurance premiums (The Cincinnati Enquirer)
Drivers who don't mind being "watched" by a tiny computer may be able to save money on their car-insurance premiums under a program offered by Progressive Casualty Insurance Co.

ZAP Alias Electric Car to Compete for the Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE (The Auto Channel)
SANTA ROSA, CA Feb 2, 2009; -- The Alias electric car from industry pioneer ZAP has been accepted to compete for the Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE.

COBRA insurance not always best choice after layoff (Sun-Sentinel)
Dorothy Marmora said she can barely come up with $458 a month to keep her health insurance from her husband's job since he was laid off. Now, that coverage is about to expire and buying the same policy will cost $912 a month.

Feds may make health insurance easier after layoff (AP via Yahoo! Malaysia News)
It will get vastly cheaper for most people to keep health insurance after losing a job if the government's stimulus plan becomes law.

Feds may make health insurance easier after layoff (AP via Yahoo! News)
It will get vastly cheaper for most people to keep health insurance after losing a job if the government's stimulus plan becomes law. Some nickel and dime cuts in health coverage for the poor will be reversed, too. Geek jobs in medicine will grow.

WHO GETS WHAT: Billions for health care insurance (AP via Yahoo! Finance)
It will get vastly cheaper for most people to keep health insurance after losing a job if the government's stimulus plan becomes law. Some nickel and dime cuts in health coverage for the poor will be reversed, too.

Redundancy fears lift cost of insurance (Financial Times)
Insurers are raising premiums on unemployment insurance by more than 20 per cent and tightening eligibility criteria, as workers scramble to set up a financial safety net against redundancy.

Curbs placed on payment insurance sales (Financial Times)
The sale of payment protection insurance alongside loans and credit cards is to be banned in 2010.

Consumer advocates concerned state's new car insurance regulations may discriminate (Asbury Park Press)
Changes to regulations governing New Jersey's auto insurance industry that took effect on Jan. 1 have sparked concern from some consumer advocates who say the laws might permit discrimination.

Former insurance commissioner dies (The Charlotte Observer)
Former longtime Insurance Commissioner Jim Long has died. He was 68. Long died Monday at Rex Hospital, where he had been hospitalized after a stroke Jan.21. “It is with heavy hearts that our family witnessed Jim's passing,” said Peg O'Connell, Long's wife. “We will be forever thankful for the prayers and kind words the people of North Carolina offered to Jim and our family during this ...

Allstate seeks 15 percent increase in N.J. auto insurance rates (The Star-Ledger)
Allstate New Jersey Insurance Co. asked the state for permission to raise auto insurance rates 15.4 percent, according to a report in the Record. The report said the state's third-largest auto insurer by premium dollars, which covers nearly 700,000 vehicles...

Health Insurance: What You Need to Know (New York Times)
With Americans spending an ever increasing amount on medical costs, it?s more important than ever to have insurance that fits your health care needs.

Can You Navigate Insurance? (KiplingerForecasts.com)
The better you understand insurance, the better it can protect you and your finances. Take our QUIZ to see how you fare.

NEW! The Kiplinger Insurance Center (KiplingerForecasts.com)
Find out how to get the best insurance rates and how much insurance you need for your home, health, auto and life.

Michigan Insurance Hall of Fame Now Accepting Nominations (Insurance Journal)
The Michigan Insurance Hall of Fame (MIHOF) is now accepting nominations for its 16th annual induction ceremony Wednesday, Aug. 19 on the Olivet College campus. The MIHOF recognizes individuals ...

The Nation: Insurance regulator to check pre-need firms: House body (BusinessWorld Online)
A HOUSE body has recommended the Insurance Commission (IC) as regulator of the beleaguered pre-need industry, a position currently held by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), under a bill seeking to set up a pre-need insurance firm.

Fireman's Fund Brings 'Green' Homeowners Insurance to Minnesota (Insurance Journal)
Fireman's Fund Insurance Co. is now offering 'green' homeowner's insurance to consumers in the state of Minnesota. This is the first-ever admitted green insurance available to homeowners in the ...

2 lose appeal in Florida insurance scam (NBC 15 Mobile)
Two men sentenced to federal prison for cheating investors out of more than $100 million in an insurance scheme have failed to convince an appeals court that they were unfairly...

Ron Reitz of Quality Claims Management Selected to Speak about Insurance and Law Issues at the 30th Annual CAI's ... (Centre Daily Times)
On Jan 30, Ron Reitz, President of Quality Claims Management Corp. participated as a panelist at the “Insurance Masters Program” regarding current and emerging insurance issues that are of interest to those in the community association law field.

Ping An Insurance Rises On Possible Fortis, BNP Deal Rejection (Bloomberg)
Feb. 4 (Bloomberg) -- Ping An Insurance (Group) Co. rose in Shanghai trading after the company’s lawyer said the insurer intends to vote against BNP Paribas SA ’s revised bid for some of Fortis’s units.

Bills push major insurance reforms (Rocky Mountain News)
Legislative Democrats who pushed through what were considered major insurance reforms last year have come back this year with a number of bills that could turn the industry on its head.

ING to Sell Stake in Canadian Insurance Unit (New York Times)
ING Groep plans to raise as much as 2.1 billion Canadian dollars by selling its 70 percent stake in a Canadian insurance unit.

Oman Insurance achieves 41% increase in gross written premium (AME Info)
Oman Insurance Company (PSC) posted a strong 41% increase in the gross written premium amounting to Dhs2.14bn as compared to 2007.

Sector movers: Aviva lifts insurance stocks after sales boost (ShareCast via Yahoo! UK & Ireland Finance)
Norwich Union owner Aviva is lifting the life insurance sector higher after seeing sales boosted by the weak pound.

Tupperware's 4th-quarter profit rises partly on gain from insurance recoveries (Canadian Business)
Tupperware Brands Corp. said its fourth-quarter profit climbed 20 percent, partly helped by gains from insurance recoveries.The company,

Crop insurance workshops begin Feb. 11 (Cape Gazette)
New Delaware Department of Agriculture Secretary Ed Kee is encouraging Delaware farmers to attend an upcoming workshop series to fully explore all their crop insurance and revenue coverage options for 2009.

Drivers Getting Rid of Car Insurance to Save Money (KEYT 3 Santa Barbara)
It may be something you're considering, or perhaps already doing - driving without insurance. Like the economy itself, it's becoming a growing, troubling trend that could result in even greater financial loss. KEY News Reporter Joe Gehl has more.

Former NC insurance commissioner Long dies at 68 (Carteret County News-Times)
RALEIGH (AP) — Former state Insurance Commissioner Jim Long died Monday, a hospital official said, a month after ending his 24-year run as the industry's top regulator and less than two weeks after suffering a stroke before a legislative meeting. He was 68.

Pender County joins insurance lawsuit, contributes $5,000 (Topsail Voice)
BURGAW – In one of the shortest and least discussed items of Monday’s meeting, the Pender County commissioners voted unanimously to join a lawsuit to fight a nearly 30 percent homeowners insurance increase approved by the NC Insurance Commission.

Details from children's health insurance bill (AP via Yahoo! News)
Key details from the legislation passed Wednesday expanding the State Children's Health Insurance Program:

House Votes to Extend Children?s Health Insurance (New York Times)
The House gave final approval to a bill extending health insurance to millions of low-income children, and President Obama is expected to sign it quickly.

Obama signs children's health insurance bill (International Herald Tribune)
The House gave final approval to a bill extending health insurance to millions of low-income children, and President Barack Obama signed it.

Obama signs bill extending kids' health insurance (AP via Yahoo! News)
President Barack Obama on Wednesday signed a bill extending health coverage to 4 million uninsured children, a move he called a first step toward fulfilling a campaign pledge to provide insurance for all Americans. It was a victory for Obama a day after his nominee to shepherd his broad health care agenda stepped aside amid tax problems.

Colleges' Health Insurance Fees Questioned (NPR)
Parents may be paying twice for their college students' health insurance. Often, they're paying for private insurance plus health insurance fees buried in overall college costs. Less than a quarter of college clinic fees ever get reimbursed by private insurers. Now, the attorney general's office in New York state is investigating college disclosure policies about health care fees.

Details from children's health insurance bill (AP via Yahoo! News)
Key details from the legislation signed into law Wednesday expanding the State Children's Health Insurance Program:

Royal Bank Of Scotland Will Not Sell Insurance Business (Fox News)
Royal Bank Of Scotland Will Not Sell Insurance Business

Michigan considering more auto insurance oversight (AP via Yahoo! Finance)
Michigan's insurance advocate wants auto insurers to get state approval for rate increases and says they no longer should consider where a driver lives when setting rates.

RBS scraps sale of insurance arm  (Reuters via Yahoo! UK & Ireland News)
Royal Bank of Scotland has scrapped the 10-month auction of its insurance arm and said on Thursday it will keep the home of Direct Line and Churchill brands within the bank.

Chiropractors snared in OC insurance fraud scheme (San Francisco Chronicle)
Eight Orange County chiropractors are among a dozen people arrested for an alleged insurance fraud kickback scheme. Three office administrators and a lawyer were also part of the alleged plan to defraud insurance companies through patient referrals and...