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In the World of D&O for Non-Profits Schinnerer Brings Flexibility, A Broad Appetite, Innovative Solutions

By Annie George

Posted on 27 Jun 2011

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We spoke with Ana Recuero, Assistant Vice President, of Victor O. Schinnerer & Company, about the firm’s Non-Profit D&O program and how the coverage goes beyond the traditional products to provide flexibility and protect the unique risks of this industry.

Founded in 1946, Schinnerer, with nearly 200 employees, is one of the largest and most experienced underwriting managers of professional liability and specialty insurance programs in the world. Schinnerer currently handles nearly $500 million in premiums on behalf of several insurance carriers and through a large network of over 9,600 active brokers. Its corporate headquarters is in Chevy Chase, Maryland, with additional offices in California, New York, and Texas. Its sister company in Canada, ENCON, distributes its insurance programs through brokers in Canada.

Ana joined Schinnerer’s D&O Department in 2004, having started her career in the insurance industry in 1986 at USAA Insurance and later working at State Farm. At Schinnerer, Ana is a senior underwriter and AVP, underwriting accounts and assisting in the management of the department.

Schinnerer is widely recognized in the industry for its knowledge and experience in the Non-Profit D&O market. Its non-profit underwriters work on non-profit accounts exclusively, and are knowledgeable about the industry and the risks associated with non-profit organizations. “We really understand the needs of non-profits,” said Ana, “which is why brokers who don't know the market come to us. We educate the brokers and work hard to make sure that they are not writing a risk that may be in trouble, for example.” Furthermore, having written non-profit risks for over 15 years, Schinnerer is not a company that goes in and out of the market.

The Non-Profit D&O policy protects directors, officers, employees, volunteers, committee members, trustees and the organization itself, up to $5 million in coverage. What’s more, the program includes Employment Practices Liability and Fiduciary Liability coverage.  It’s open access, available nationally, and written on admitted “A” paper with Navigators Insurance Company.

In fact, it was June 2010 that Schinnerer launched its new Non-Profit D&O program with program insurer, Navigators, expanding its target classes to include homeowners and condo associations and offering clients the option of purchasing shared or separate limits for D&O, EPL, and Fiduciary, as well as the ability to buy stand-alone policies. “In launching our program last year, these new enhancements and features provide brokers and their clients with more flexibility,” explained Ana. “They have access to a product that provides separate limits for each coverage or can choose to purchase a standalone policy. This is especially important as many non-profits are looking at their budgets, which are relatively small, particularly in this economy, and deciding that they only need D&O coverage. They don’t have employees as non-profits so they don’t see the need to purchase EPL cover. This is a real advantage for them, and important in the marketplace.”

Schinnerer when developing its new product received feedback from top brokers on the policy form to make sure it met the needs of the insured and the flexibility the brokers needed in selling the program. “Switching our program to a new carrier has been a win-win for everyone – for our brokers who have an enhanced product and for us in that we’ve gained a program that has a broader risk appetite and open to providing innovative insurance solutions in this space,” said Ana.

The program is designed for small to medium non-profits in these targeted classes: trade and professional associations, charities, foundations, museums, chambers of commerce, agricultural co-ops, social services with overnight facilities, quasi-governmental organizations, senior care organizations, select condo and homeowners associations, and many others.

Schinnerer markets its program through in addition to doing banner ads and email marketing. “We also send out monthly mailings, produce a newsletter called SOUNDWAVES on risk management, and our website has a great deal of information related to Non-Profit D&O, including a feature called War Stories, which explains the outcome of real-life claims and how the parties involved could have handled certain aspects differently,” said Ana. “Additionally, we have what's called a primer on our website that many brokers unfamiliar with Non-Profit D&O coverage access. I always recommend this section and have received great feedback from the brokers who have used it. And, we have a podcast on the program.”

As a leading underwriting manager of specialty insurance Programs, Schinnerer also offers the following programs: Architects & Engineers, Construction Consultants, Contractors, Energy & Utilities, Environmental Consultants, Forest Products, Healthcare Organizations, International Coverage, Kidnap & Ransom, Land Surveyor, Landscape Architects, Public Entities, Railroad Protective, and Real Estate Professionals.

To learn more about Schinnerer’s Non-Profit D&O Program, please visit the company website, or you can call Ana at (301) 951-6930 or email her at: