Pandemic Insurance for Events: Will Congress Make It?

On November 2, Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) tabled a bill in the US House of Representatives to create a backstop to help event organizers offset future financial losses due to a future pandemic or public health emergency. The bill was immediately approved by the American Society of Association Executives.

The bill, known as the Pandemic Risk Insurance Act of 2021, instructs insurance companies to provide pandemic coverage for losses from event failure and also provides federal reinsurance support in the event such losses exceed $ 250 million industrywide. Since research by the Professional Convention Management Association shows that associations generate around 35 percent of their annual revenue from conferences and events, such insurance would be a safeguard for the associations’ financial health.

Case in point: A December 2020 survey by the ASAE Research Foundation found that 79 percent of respondents in 2020 did not have coverage for communicable disease cancellation and 10 percent did not report sufficient reserves to cover losses from canceled events.

“Millions of small businesses, nonprofits, associations and event companies across the country were abandoned through no fault of their own during the coronavirus pandemic,” said MP Maloney (pictured here) after introducing the bill to the House of Representatives. “A public-private framework would guarantee that insurance markets serve these organizations in the next pandemic. I would like to thank ASAE for supporting PRIA. “

ASAE has called for pandemic risk insurance Solution since the worldwide The Covid outbreak suspended business travel and events for the first time in March 2020. ASAE joined the Business Continuity Coalition in May 2021, which represents a broad spectrum of policyholders and works with policy makers to develop programs to protect jobs, associations and businesses amid major public health emergencies.

Screenshot 2021-11-03 at 11.11.32 a.m. png“Event cancellation coverage is especially important to our association community, whose lifeblood comes from personal events of all sizes,” said Michelle Mason, President and CEO of ASAE, FASAE, CAE (pictured here). “This bill will help give associations the security they need to fully revitalize the far-reaching economic impact of our community through industry-focused conferences and events and other vital services.”

However, the insurance industry is not interested in Maloney’s proposal. In a joint press release, the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies, the American Property Casualty Insurance Association, and the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America stated that such a program “with a financial role for the industry is inconsistent with the basic notion that “Pandemics are not insurable risks.”

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