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The American Association of Insurance Services said Monday it had gained approval for its Cannabis Businessowners Policy (CannaBOP) program from the Colorado Department of Insurance.
The approval was granted Friday, according to an AAIS spokesman.
The CannaBOP program was first introduced by AAIS in California last year, and the Colorado CannaBOP program provides a package policy with both property and liability coverage for qualifying Colorado cannabis dispensaries, storage facilities, distributors, processors, manufacturers and private cannabis testing facilities and laboratories, the statement said.
AAIS partnered with Merlinos & Associates Inc., the actuarial consulting group, to help analyze market exposures and develop rating guidelines specific to the cannabis industry, the statement said.
The U.S. cannabis industry is expected to generate more than $20 billion in medical and recreational sales, and over 250,000 jobs by 2020, the statement said.
“Providing coverage in growth markets is a source of tremendous opportunity for insurers,” Robert Guevara, vice president of AAIS inland marine and commercial lines, said in a statement. “The Colorado CannaBOP Program enables AAIS Members to respond to the insurance needs of customers in a fast-emerging market with an admitted policy.”
It is AAIS’s mission to deliver CannaBOP and other cannabis-specific programs to insurers in all states with established cannabis markets, the statement said, adding AAIS intends to develop similar programs for Alaska, the District of Columbia, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Vermont, Washington and more.
Established in 1936, AAIS serves the property/casualty insurance industry as the only national nonprofit advisory organization governed by its member insurers, the statement said.
Insurance trade groups are praising a legislative effort to ensure that safe harbor is provided for banking and insurance industry participants in cannabis transactions.