Congress Considers Pandemic Risk Insurance Act to Address COVID-19 Business Interruptions Losses

Legislation word on paper in typewriter

The draft PRIA legislation is in the very early stages of review and discussion among select members of Congress.

May 18, 2020
Richard W. Brown & Andres Avila - Saxe Doernberger & Vita, P.C.

The draft legislation, entitled the Pandemic Risk Insurance Act of 2020 (“PRIA”), would establish a Federal Pandemic Risk Reinsurance Fund and Program (the “Program”), that is intended to provide a system of shared public and private compensation for business interruption (“BI”) losses resulting from a pandemic or outbreak of communicable disease. PRIA, in its current draft form, is modeled after and in many ways mirrors the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act that was enacted to address catastrophic losses resulting from acts of terrorism.

PRIA effectively mandates that participating insurers provide coverage for any business interruption loss resulting from an outbreak of infectious disease or pandemic that is declared an emergency or major disaster by the President and certified by the Secretary of Treasury (the “Secretary”) as a public health emergency. PRIA would be triggered in the case of certified public health emergencies upon the aggregate industry insured losses exceed $250 million dollars, and include an annual aggregate limit capped at $500 billion dollars. The draft bill provides that the Secretary would administer the Program and pay the Federal share of compensation for insured losses, which would be 95% of losses in excess of an applicable insurer annual deductible, once the Program is triggered. The compensation would benefit those insurers that elect to participate in the Program in exchange for a premium paid by the participating insurer for reinsurance coverage under the Program.

Reprinted courtesy of Richard W. Brown, Saxe Doernberger & Vita, P.C. and Andres Avila, Saxe Doernberger & Vita, P.C.
Mr. Brown may be contacted at rwb@sdvlaw.com
Mr. Avila may be contacted at ara@sdvlaw.com



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