Agency errors and omissions premiums have risen on average for three years in a row, according to Insurance Journal’s annual Agency E&O survey.
Some 70.5% of respondents saw an increase in their agency E&O renewal premium in 2022. That’s up from 58.4% of respondents who saw increases in E&O renewal premiums in 2021, and up from 50.2% who saw increases in the 2020 agency E&O survey.
Those owners and buyers of agency E&O coverage don’t see the upward trend on pricing coming to an end next year either. The survey found that 68.6% predict another increase at their next renewal; that’s up from 61.8% in the 2021 survey and up from 53.8% in 2020 survey.
Almost half (47.0%) of the agency E&O buyers who responded to the survey said the increase in premium was due to a rate increase from the agency’s E&O carrier while another 38.3% of respondents cited the increase came from agency growth/expansion/acquisition. Only 7.4% said the increase was due to the agency’s own claims experience while 4.7% reported the increase was due to changes to underwriting risk factors (other than growth). Just 7.4% noted the increase in premium was due to changes in their policy such as higher limits of coverage; that’s up from 2.3% who reported higher coverage limits as the reason in the 2021 survey.
It’s no surprise that more agencies are placing business in the excess and surplus lines market. More than one-third of respondents (36.7%) reported placing more E&S business than one year ago where 35.2% reported placing more E&S business.
One area that has continued to change is agency E&O deductibles. Some 44.6% of respondents reported a recent change to policy deductibles. That’s slightly down from 51.1% of agencies that reported changes to deductibles in the 2021 survey.
Company insolvency exclusions (15.8%), changes to fraud, dishonest acts, illegal acts, false advertising, discrimination (8.9%), and certain breaches of personal data (7.9%) were other areas survey respondents noted as recent changes in coverage. However, a majority of respondents (71.2%) continue to report satisfaction with E&O terms, conditions and limits on their agency E&O policies, which was a slight decrease (73.0%) from satisfaction levels reported in the 2021 survey.
Year-after-year, the vast majority of respondents (83.4%) continue to report that the number one reason they carrier agency E&O coverage is to protect the assets of the agency. Only 10.1% reported increasing their agency E&O limit at the last renewal.
Insurance Journal’s Agency E&O Survey collected 225 responses from agency owners nationwide via an online survey in late September and early October 2022. For more information, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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