Covington to Lead The Surety & Fidelity Association of America

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Larry Taylor, Chair SFAA Board of Directors
Phone: (515) 243-8171
E-mail: [email protected]

Contact: Bryan Surcouf, Communications Manager
Phone: (202) 778-3629
E-mail: [email protected]

Covington to Lead The Surety & Fidelity Association of America
Association Salutes Retiring President and Welcomes New Leader

JULY 19, 2018, Washington, D.C. – The Surety & Fidelity Association of America?s (SFAA) board of directors is delighted to announce that J. Lee Covington II will become the trade association?s President on October 1, 2018. Covington will take the place of retiring President Lynn Schubert who has led the SFAA for more than two decades. Schubert will become President Emeritus until her retirement on December 31, 2018.

?In the past 22 years, Lynn Schubert has transformed the SFAA into the thought leader and trusted adviser for the surety and fidelity industry, as well as for government agencies and legislators,? said Board Chair Larry Taylor. ?Now the industry marks the beginning of a new era with Lee Covington.?

The SFAA works every day to educate lawmakers and stakeholders about the benefits of surety and fidelity bonding and the critical role it plays to protect public and private interests. In 2017 alone, the surety industry provided over $600 billion in protection to consumers, taxpayers and businesses. The organization represents more than 425 property and casualty insurance companies providing public policy advocacy and education, as well as statistical and actuarial services and information. SFAA members write over 97 percent of the surety and fidelity premium in the United States.

?It is an honor to become President of the SFAA and I welcome the opportunity to lead the organization as it continues to achieve its mission and seize new opportunities to expand the use of the valuable products and services offered by the association?s members,? said Covington.

Covington currently is the Senior Vice President, Governmental Affairs and General Counsel for the Insured Retirement Institute, a position he held since 2009, leading its legislative and regulatory initiatives at both the federal and state levels. His focus on insurance law began in 1993 in Little Rock, Arkansas where he rose to become the deputy commissioner of the Arkansas Insurance Department. Covington honed his leadership skills as the Director of the Ohio Department of Insurance from 1999 to 2002, where he served on the Executive Committee of National Association of Insurance Commissioners, and then moved to positions of influence on the national stage in Washington D.C.

?It has been my honor to serve the SFAA,? said President Lynn Schubert, ?and I am thrilled to turn over the reins to such a capable leader who will take our vibrant organization of experienced staff and active member company representatives and enhance it for the membership and the entire industry.?

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The Surety & Fidelity Association of America (SFAA) is a trade association of more than 425 insurance companies that write the vast majority of surety and fidelity bonds in the U.S. SFAA is licensed as a rating or advisory organization in all states and it has been designated by state insurance departments as a statistical agent for the reporting of fidelity and surety experience.


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SFAA Comments on Arkansas Pharmacy Benefit Managers Regulations

SFAA Comments on Arkansas Pharmacy Benefit Managers Regulations

SFAA submitted comments to the Arkansas Insurance Department (Department) to address proposed regulations that would require pharmacy benefit managers (PBM) to post a $1 million license bond.  The proposed rules would permit direct actions on the bond.  If the bond amount would cause the PBM significant financial hardship, the Insurance Commissioner could reduce the amount required.  We explained the surety?s underwriting process and noted that the high bond amount could reduce the bond?s availability.  Similarly, we explained that the proposed regulations contain a broad obligation in the bond?s conditions with regard to complying with any statute.  We recommended that the scope of the bond?s conditions be limited to compliance with the applicable laws and regulations for PBMs.  SFAA offered to work with the Department on these issues to improve the bond?s availability.  The proposed rules also provide that a PBM that furnishes a $1 million bond under the PBM regulation need not furnish a $25,000 bond under the TPA regulation.

Members should visit Advocacy / General Info (Members) for more information.


SFAA Addresses Changes to Georgia Bond Requirements for Livestock Sales

SFAA Addresses Changes to Georgia Bond Requirements for Livestock Sales

SFAA Addresses Changes to Georgia Bond Requirements for Livestock Sales SFAA submitted comments to the Georgia Department of Agriculture (Department) to address proposed regulations that implement a new law that permits livestock dealers and auction operators to obtain a letter of credit, certificate of deposit, or “other written instrument” in lieu of the bond.  SFAA promoted the value of bonds in comparison to other forms of security based on the surety?s prequalification of the bond principal and the financial protection offered in the event of a default.  The proposed rules also implement a change in the law that deleted the specified bond amounts for a livestock auction operator and for dealers purchasing livestock at an auction.  Instead, the amount of the bond or other security will be determined through a memorandum of agreement with the Department, which must be sufficient to secure the performance of the dealer or the operator’s obligations.  To ensure that the amount of financial protection is the same, the amount required should be the same regardless of the form of security that is furnished.

Members should visit Advocacy / General Info (Members) for more information.


SFAA Addresses Surety Qualifications and Bonding Obligation for California Workers? Compensation Col

SFAA Addresses Surety Qualifications and Bonding Obligation for California Workers? Compensation Collateral Requirements

SFAA submitted comments to the California Department of Insurance (Department) to address proposed rules that would allow surety bonds to be posted to collateralize up to 20% of the funds required to be set aside for the California deductible under a workers’ compensation deductible policy. We questioned the requirement for the surety to have a rating of at least an “A” from A.M. Best, Fitch Ratings, or Standard & Poor’s, or at least an A3 rating from Moody’s Investor Service as sureties already are subject to financial regulation and licensure from the Department. The rating requirement needlessly restricts the sureties that can provide the bond.

SFAA also recommended that the bond?s condition should be clarified to reflect a specific obligation as the proposed rules currently provide for unconditional payments. The surety also would have ten days to pay the amount owed under a written demand for payment from the insurer. SFAA also advised the Department on the value of bonds in comparison to the other forms of security permitted under the proposed rules.

The surety could not be affiliated with the insurer that issued the worker’s compensation deductible policy. The surety must provide 90 days’ notice for cancellation or nonrenewal of the bond and the collateral would have to be replaced within 30 days of the effective date.

Members should visit Advocacy / General Info (Members) for more information.