Alternative Markets

There were queries from our auditors which required further detail. Pinnacle provided this to us in a timely manner and enabled completion of the audit on time, which was greatly appreciated.

— Captive Manager


Alternative Markets

Whether it’s a captive insurance company, large deductible program, self-insured entity, public entity pool or syndicate, an alternative market entity is a risk retention program outside the traditional commercial property and casualty market. By virtue of the growth in the alternative markets for more than 30 years, the premium volume outside the mainstream markets is now greater than that written by the traditional markets.

Pinnacle understands the needs of those involved in the alternative markets, the most important of which is a desire to control insurance costs over the long term. Each program has unique risk characteristics that are often the impetus for the program formation in the first place. Differing geographic, industry or line of business mixes of business may dictate customized approaches to reviewing the risk profile for your program.

Pinnacle has expertise in a wide variety of lines of business, regulatory jurisdictions and industry niches. Not only do we have a team of experienced consultants at your service, we also have the local knowledge unique to individual market segments such as:

  • General liability for contractors
  • Medical professional liability for physician groups
  • Workers compensation for temporary staffing firms
  • Law enforcement liability for public entity pools
  • Commercial auto liability for taxi and/or public livery

Case Studies

Captive Feasibility Study
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Captive Feasibility Study

When a regional physicians group, with a moderate deductible program realized they were not getting due credit for more than a decade of exceptional loss experience, they decided to explore other options.

They chose Pinnacle specifically due to our expertise in captive and self-insurance programs.

Initially, Pinnacle discussed options including segregated cell captives, single parent captives, and even risk retention groups once they began to consider marketing the program to other similar regional physician groups.

While the customer was considering the structural alternatives, Pinnacle pursued a funding analysis. Credibility weighting the customer’s experience with industry benchmark data, produced estimates of expected losses and loss variability in several different loss layers. This not only showed the additional risk associated with higher limits of self-insurance, but was also tremendously valuable in negotiations with fronting carriers and reinsurers.

The client decided to increase the deductible on the coverage provided by their insurer, which offered more responsive pricing due to Pinnacle’s funding analysis and to form an off-shore captive providing deductible buyback coverage.  The comfort level our client had with the insured’s services also influenced the decision.

Pinnacle also worked with the captive manager to develop the feasibility study and pro forma financial statements that become the foundation of the captive application. The application was approved as submitted and the captive is running quite successfully.

Funding Study
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Funding Study

Pinnacle was approached by an aircraft manufacturer to provide recommended funding for various aviation and liability coverages. Pinnacle’s initial steps included discussing coverages to be provided and what data was available to complete the funding study. The captive was a start-up with no loss information on which to determine appropriate funding levels. Pinnacle was able to determine that the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) had a database of aircraft incidents that recorded both the manufacturer and model of the aircraft involved in the incident. Since the manufacturer was able to provide the number of units produced, Pinnacle was able to determine the frequency and severity of the incidents and project ultimate funding levels. The captive is currently operational after receiving regulatory approval.

Staffing Self Insured Reserve Analysis
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Staffing Self Insured Reserve Analysis

Pinnacle was retained by a group of staffing companies with large self-insured retentions for their workers compensation loss exposures to perform quarterly loss reserve analyses and annual funding studies. Pinnacle initially used customized benchmarks for the staffing as the basis for our analyses. However, it became apparent that the benchmarks were not reflective of the unique characteristics of this program. Pinnacle worked with the third party administrator (TPA) for the program to gather additional historical experience for the program, as well as consolidated experience for several similar programs administered by the TPA. Using the results of our analysis of the TPA’s previous experience for this program and others like it, we were able to develop benchmark loss development assumptions that tracked much more closely with the program’s actual loss emergence.

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