The availability of so called “active shooter” insurance has dominated the headlines in the last week, following what seems like an unending rash of high profile shootings in the US. This has prompted the one underwriter understood to be covering such risks to say that while perfect security is never possible, there is a great deal of value in relevant risk management.
Beazley, an affiliate of Lloyd’s of London, is currently understood to be the only insurer underwriting policies for what it calls ‘violent incidents’.
A company spokeswoman told Insurance Business America, “While recognizing that perfect security is not achievable, we also provide risk management guidance to help organizations protect people from this risk.”
The company confirmed that it is offering coverage to address potential gaps in liability insurance protection that organizations may face in the event of a violent incident, but was unable to say what uptake was like or whether it had increased in recent months.
The recent shooting in California pushed insurance broker Willis into the limelight as one of the brokers selling policies that cover gun violence. The company initially pitched the insurance to universities, but over the past few months it has been receiving inquiries from hotels, hospitals, and other institutions.
Violent incident insurance covers the liability that companies or institutions have if they have not taken preventative measures. It also covers the costs of cleaning up after an incident, as well as the expense of any counseling or consulting that would be needed.
Such incidents frequently reignite the debate over mandatory liability insurance for gun owners, which is one the brokers are watching carefully, after all, it’s a fast growing market.
Recent reports reveal a surge in handgun sales in the wake of every recent shooting. On Black Friday a total of 185,345 applicants were processed through the FBI's National Instant Criminal Background Check System, a 5.5% increase from the year before.