Articles by Jim Sams

NCCI: Work Comp Claim Frequency Dipped During Height of Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic corresponded with an unusual decrease in workers’ compensation claim severity, while claim frequency was pretty much unchanged, according to a report released Wednesday by the National Council on Compensation Insurance. NCCI said average claim severity for lost-time …

Appellate Court: No Evidence of Fraud by Pharmacies that Dispensed Pain Creams

A Pennsylvania appellate court on Monday affirmed the dismissal of a lawsuit filed by Liberty Mutual Group that alleged nine pharmacies paid kickbacks to physicians in exchange for prescribing overpriced topical compound creams to workers’ compensation claimants and auto accident …

Montana Court Upholds Most Points in Ruling That Cost Insurer $98M for Libby Mine Claims

The Montana Supreme Court upheld all but one point in a ruling that requires Berkshire Hathaway’s National Indemnity Co. to reimburse the state nearly $98 million for the cost of asbestos litigation tied to the Libby Mine. In a 6-1 …

Okla. Supreme Ct. Ruling Shows Policyholders Shouldn’t Depend on Agent’s Representations

New Dominion LLC taps into oil and natural gas reserves that many production companies avoid. The Tulsa, Oklahoma company operates hundreds of wells that produce from hydrocarbon reservoirs that are saturated with water from ancient aquifers. When oil or gas …

Texas Supreme Court Rules ExxonMobil Entitled to Info About Medical Payments

Medical providers who treated patients injured by a fire and explosion at an ExxonMobil chemical plant near Houston must disclose information about what they charged others for the same services, The Texas Supreme Court ruled. In an unsigned opinion released …

Insurers Laud Infrastructure Bill’s Nod to Marijuana Impairment Research

The $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill that became law last week earmarks billions for projects to improve safety for cars and trucks and protect properties from floods and wildfires. But one of the provisions most welcomed by insurers doesn’t appropriate any …

Calif. Issues 1st State Appellate Ruling on COVID Business Interruption Claim

California handed down the first state appellate court ruling on whether COVID-19 can cause direct physical damage or loss, deciding like four federal appellate courts before that it cannot. A panel of the California 4th District Court of Appeal on …

ADAS Reduces Loss Costs For Auto Insurers Despite Increased Repair Costs, LexisNexis Says

Advanced driver assistance systems result in fewer claims and reduce insurers loss costs by up to 23%, according to a paper by LexisNexis Risk Solutions. John Kanet, director of auto insurance for LexisNexis, said the research shows ADAS has “a …

Montana Supreme Voids UIM Exclusion For Motorcyles Owned By Policyholder

An insurer wrongly denied uninsured motorist coverage to a policyholder who was injured while riding his motorcycle even though the policy excluded damages caused by motorcycle accidents, the Montana Supreme Court ruled Tuesday. The high court ruled that the insurance …

CCC Says Shortage of Repair Technicians Adding to Pressure on Auto Claim Costs

If a shortage of replacement parts and growing claim severity are not enough to contend with, auto insurers are also coping with a labor shortage among auto repair shops that is driving up claim costs, according to CCC Intelligent Solutions. …