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OFF BEAT: In a word — or 37,931 words — it’s insurance

Published April 22, 2014 - 5:02pm CST

Et tu, exclusions?

Ford worker's disability bias, retaliation case over telecommuting reinstated

By: Judy Greenwald

Published April 22, 2014 - 4:46pm CST

An appeals court has reinstated a U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission disability discrimination and retaliation lawsuit filed on behalf of a disabled Ford Motor Co. worker who was denied a telecommuting arrangement and terminated.

Shannon Groeber joins Lockton global tech and privacy practice as senior vice president

By: Kate Shepherd

Published April 22, 2014 - 4:03pm CST

Lockton Cos. L.L.C. has named Shannon Groeber as senior vice president of its global technology and privacy practice.

TTD benefits end when workers are cleared to return to work: Miss. high court

By: Sheena Harrison

Published April 22, 2014 - 3:44pm CST

The Mississippi Supreme Court has ruled that temporary total disability workers compensation benefits end for injured workers when they are cleared to return to their previous employment, even if they haven't reached maximum medical improvement.

Berkley Corp. first quarter net income up 45.5% over last year

By: Mark A. Hofmann

Published April 22, 2014 - 3:39pm CST

W.R. Berkley Corp. posted $169.8 million in net income for the first quarter of 2014, an increase of 45.5% from the first quarter of last year.

Louisiana workers comp costs higher than in most states: Study

By: Stephanie Goldberg

Published April 22, 2014 - 3:34pm CST

Medical payments for injured workers in Louisiana were higher and growing faster than in most states, with payments per claim increasing more than 7% per year from 2006 to 2011, according to a study by the Workers Compensation Research Institute.

Managing general agencies remain strong source of direct premiums: Study

By: Judy Greenwald

Published April 22, 2014 - 3:13pm CST

Insurers and managing general agencies are working together to created a more stable business model and a long-term favorable outlook for growth, says a study on MGAs released Tuesday.

Quick congressional action urged on TRIA backstop renewal: Marsh

By: Mark A. Hofmann

Published April 22, 2014 - 2:21pm CST

WASHINGTON — The potential economic consequences of failure to extend the federal terrorism insurance backstop program should be “an impetus for quick congressional action,” according to report released Tuesday by Marsh L.L.C.

Many businesses hurt by Superstorm Sandy were uninsured or couldn't collect

By: Matt Dunning

Published April 22, 2014 - 2:17pm CST

Very few small and midsize businesses affected by Superstorm Sandy have been able to recover some portion of their financial losses through insurance, according to a new report by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Medicare chief Jonathan Blum leaving Obama administration

By: Paul Demko, Modern Healthcare

Published April 22, 2014 - 12:35pm CST

The Obama administration's top Medicare official is stepping down from his post.

Espionage hacking grows, with more from Eastern Europe: Study

Published April 22, 2014 - 12:25pm CST

(Reuters) — Hacking for espionage purposes is sharply increasing, with groups or national governments from Eastern Europe playing a growing role, according to one of the most comprehensive annual studies of computer intrusions.

GM seeks U.S. court protection against ignition lawsuits

Published April 22, 2014 - 11:02am CST

(Reuters) — General Motors Co. filed a motion in a U.S. court to enforce a bar on lawsuits stemming from ignition defects in cars sold before its 2009 bankruptcy as it fights proposed class action litigation that seeks to set aside the restriction.

Smartphone-case firm settles whistleblower lawsuit over customs duties for $4.3M

By: Judy Greenwald

Published April 22, 2014 - 10:51am CST

A Colorado company that sells protective cases for smartphones and tablets has agreed to pay $4.3 million to settle a whistleblower lawsuit, in which it was charged with violating the False Claims Act and the Tariff Act of 1930.

Sebelius' Enroll America fundraising limited to two calls: GAO

By: Paul Demko, Modern Healthcare

Published April 22, 2014 - 10:39am CST

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius' fundraising efforts on behalf of a not-for-profit group leading Obamacare enrollment efforts were limited to two previously disclosed phone calls, according to a report issued Monday by the U.S. Government Accountability Office.

Small employers fuel recent growth of defined contribution plans

By: Jerry Geisel

Published April 22, 2014 - 10:26am CST

More than 90% of pension plans that have been formed in recent years have been defined contribution plans, with the overwhelming majority of those plans set up by small employers, according to a new government report.

Brown & Brown profit drops to $52.4M in 2014 first quarter

By: Matthew Lerner

Published April 22, 2014 - 10:24am CST

Net income for the first quarter of 2014 dipped 12.8% from the prior-year period to $52.4 million despite growth in overall revenue, insurance brokerage Brown & Brown Inc. reported Tuesday.

Reinsurers see rates declines, lower catastrophe losses: Report

By: Sarah Veysey

Published April 22, 2014 - 10:20am CST

Reinsurance rates continue to decline but reinsurers reported solid underwriting gains last year as catastrophe losses were significantly lower than average, according to a report published Tuesday by Fitch Ratings Ltd.

Travelers' profit rises 17% on higher investment income

Published April 22, 2014 - 10:17am CST

(Reuters) — U.S. property/casualty insurer Travelers Cos. Inc. reported a 17% rise in first-quarter profit, helped by higher underwriting gains and an increase in net investment income.

Arizona community college faces class action over data breach

By: Matt Dunning

Published April 21, 2014 - 3:23pm CST

A proposed class action lawsuit is targeting a community college district in Tempe, Ariz., that allegedly violated several state and federal data protection laws.

Dismissal of lawsuit by teacher fired for inappropriate sexual comments upheld

By: Judy Greenwald

Published April 21, 2014 - 3:20pm CST

A federal appeals court has upheld dismissal of retaliation and discrimination claims filed by a terminated college teacher who had continual conflicts with both colleagues and students.

PRIMA to train government risk managers on ISO 31000 standard for ERM

By: Rodd Zolkos

Published April 21, 2014 - 3:17pm CST

The Public Risk Management Association is developing a program aimed at training a group of government risk managers to train others in the public sector on implementing enterprise risk management using the ISO 31000 standard.

U.S. insider trading cases face test at appeals court

Published April 21, 2014 - 2:42pm CST

(Reuters) — An appeals court is set to hear a case whose outcome could make it harder for the government to prosecute insider trading and potentially jeopardize several high-profile guilty verdicts, including that of SAC Capital Advisors portfolio manager Michael Steinberg.

Marsh & McLennan hires Eddie Dunn as director of veteran recruitment

By: Kate Shepherd

Published April 21, 2014 - 2:40pm CST

Marsh & McLennan Cos. Inc. has named Eddie Dunn as director of military and veteran affairs, responsible for managing veteran recruitment strategy, the broker said Monday.

Furniture store that didn't hire pregnant woman must pay: Court

By: Joanne Wojcik

Published April 21, 2014 - 2:34pm CST

A midsize office furnishings and architectural store in New York City has agreed to pay $90,000 to settle a pregnancy discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission charging it with reneging on an employment to a job applicant who was pregnant.

Property/casualty insurer results strong in 2013 fourth quarter: Survey

By: Mark A. Hofmann

Published April 21, 2014 - 11:25am CST

The U.S. property/casualty insurance industry's net income for the fourth quarter of 2013 soared to $20.76 billion from $7.25 billion during the same period a year earlier, according to a survey released Monday.