S&P Notes Statewide Insurance Co. (Ill.) Assigned ‘R’ Rating

January 15, 2004

Standard & Poor’s has assigned its ‘R’ financial strength rating to Statewide Insurance Co. (Ill.) (Statewide) after the Illinois Department of Insurance ordered the company to be liquidated on the basis of insolvency, effective Jan. 6, 2004.

This rating action reflects the impairment of Statewide’s statutory surplus in excess of $21 million. Illinois Director of Insurance, J. Anthony Clark will be the statutory liquidator and will marshal the assets and identify the company’s creditors. The Illinois Insurance Guaranty Fund as well as other organizations in the other licensed states will be responsible for the claims and the defense of the policyholders.

Formed in 1979, Waukegan, Ill.-based Statewide has licenses in 26 states. It wrote commercial multiple peril, workers’ compensation, commercial auto, umbrella insurance policies, and surety bond. It marketed its products primarily to small general contractors and artisans. For the first 10 months of 2003 it reported $13.7 million in direct premiums written.

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