In recent years, several states have retroactively extended their statutes of limitations for sexual abuse and molestation (SAM) claims, leading to questions about whether such claims against public entities might become more frequent.
To help pools proactively manage the implications of these statutory changes, AGRiP recently held two meetings for pools to discuss shared SAM claim experiences.
These discussions generated several recommendations for pools with potential or actual claim exposure resulting from changes to SAM statutes of limitations. Pools not currently affected by such extensions should take these suggestions into consideration as well.
- Most importantly, develop model policies, procedures and training for your pool’s members to avoid SAM claims and manage SAM allegations. Be sure to include elected officials in your pool’s training outreach. Not only will risk management initiatives produce long-term results, these efforts will also reinforce your pool’s broader purpose.
- Build your pool’s net position to accommodate additional risk retention for changing SAM exposures. Although this risk still presents many unknowns, there is baseline data actuaries can use to project loss scenarios.
- Develop tools to routinely assess your pool’s exposure to legislative changes and how such changes are managed across your enterprise (e.g., claims, coverage, underwriting, risk management).
- Talk early and openly with your pool’s reinsurance and excess partners about new or changing SAM exposures. Address known and unknown risks.
- Consider the claim and coverage implications if a SAM allegation is made against a third-party contract employee providing services under a member entity’s direction.
- Contract with an insurance archivist or archaeologist to find and document old insurance policies held by your pool’s members.
- Collaborate and share ideas with other pools. Ask them what your pool should be thinking about or preparing for.
Any AGRiP member pool is welcome to receive more extensive notes from these discussions. Contact Kristen Morris for additional information.