|Traded as||NYSE: AIZ
S&P 500 Component
|Headquarters||28 Liberty St
New York City, New York, U.S.
|Alan B. Colberg (President and CEO)|
|Revenue||US$ 10.38 billion (FY 2014)|
|US$ 470.9 million (FY 2014)|
|Total assets||US$31.562 billion (FY 2014)|
|Total equity||US$4.778 billion (FY 2014)|
Number of employees
|approximately 17,500 (2014)|
Assurant, Inc. is a holding company with headquarters in New York City. Its businesses provide a diverse set of specialty, niche-market insurance products in the property, casualty, life and health insurance sectors. The company’s two operating segments are Assurant Solutions and Assurant Specialty Property.
The company, formerly known as Fortis, Inc., was spun off from Dutch and Belgian financial-services company Fortis Insurance N.V. in 2004. The company’s initial public offering on Feb. 5, 2004 at $1.76 billion was the fourth largest that year. In connection with the public offering, the company changed its name to Assurant, Inc.
Assurant can trace its roots back to the founding of the La Crosse Mutual Aid Association, which was established to sell disability insurance in Wisconsin in the early 1890s. La Crosse Mutual Aid Association would later become the Time Insurance Company. In 1978, N.V. AMEV of the Netherlands acquired the Time Insurance Company (now Assurant Health) via its U.S. holding company AMEV Holdings, Inc. During the next 12 years, AMEV Holdings, Inc. would expand through acquisition, buying American Security Insurance (credit-related insurance, now Assurant Solutions); United Family (funeral insurance, now Assurant Solutions - Preneed Division); Western Insurance Company (mutual funds, now part of Assurant Employee Benefits); and Superior Insurance (auto insurance). In 1990, N.V. AMEV of the Netherlands acquired VSB Groep NV bank to become the Netherlands first financial conglomerate combining an insurer and a bank, creating Fortis. In 1991, AMEV acquired the group life, accident and health insurance of Mutual Benefit Life Insurance Company (now part of Assurant Employee Benefits). AMEV Holdings, Inc. was rebranded Fortis, Inc. in 1991. Superior Insurance was sold in 1996. Fortis acquired John Alden in 1998 and American Bankers Insurance in 1999.
On June 10, 2015, Assurant Health’s parent company, Assurant, Inc., announced an exit from the health insurance marketplace to focus on housing and lifestyle specialty protection products and services. Sun Life Financial acquired Assurant Employee Benefits for $940 million in September, and in October, Assurant announced it had completed the sale of certain assets and business lines of Assurant Health to National General Holdings Corporation. National General acquired Assurant Health’s existing supplemental and self-funded business lines. Assurant is in the process of winding down its major medical operations and did not participate in the next Affordable Care Act open enrollment period beginning in November 2015.
Assurant operates two main businesses:
- Assurant Solutions develops, underwrites, and markets specialty insurance, extended service contracts and other risk management solutions in collaborative relationships with financial institutions, retailers, automobile dealers, utilities, funeral homes and other entities. Principal lines of business include debt protection administration, credit insurance, preneed life insurance, and warranties and extended service contracts on appliances, consumer electronics, automobiles, recreational vehicles and boats.
- Assurant Specialty Property develops, underwrites, markets and administers specialty property and personal lines of insurance and also offers lender-placed hazard insurance and outsourcing services to mortgage companies, manufactured home builders and dealers, auto finance companies, property management companies, and managing general agents. In addition, the company also offers collateral protection programs for automobiles, manufactured housing insurance, residents insurance, homeowners, watercraft, motorcycle, motor home, federal flood, and farmowners.
Assurant Health policy claim denials and cancellations
Assurant Health (now divested from Assurant) was repeatedly found to cancel health policies for some customers that had serious medical conditions, and 12 states criticized the firm for denying claims, with most of the states levying fines against Assurant. A number of individual cases have been reported.
In September 2009, the South Carolina Supreme Court upheld a lower court’s verdict that the firm (then known as "Fortis") wrongly revoked the health insurance policy of a holder who had contracted HIV subsequent to getting an insurance policy, and ordered the firm to pay $10 million to the plaintiff. The court found that:
- Pursuant to company policy in cases involving long-term disease, Fortis launched an investigation to determine whether [the plaintiff] had failed to disclose a pre-existing condition on his policy application...A Fortis investigator reviewed the records and discovered [an] erroneously-dated intake note in [the doctor’s] files. That information was then forwarded to [a] Fortis Senior Underwriter...for review. [The underwriter]...recommended that [the plaintiff’s] policy be rescinded on the grounds that he had misrepresented his HIV positive status.
Reuters report on the ruling stated that Fortis had a company policy to target every recently diagnosed HIV-positive policyholder for an automatic fraud investigation for a pretext to rescind their policy, according to undisclosed records. As in that case, their insurance policies often were canceled on incorrect information, flimsy evidence, or for no reason at all. In March 2010, the United States Supreme Court rejected the firm's appeal of the ruling
In February 2010, a Boulder, Colorado jury found that Assurant Health had breached its contract with a woman who was severely injured in a hit-and-run accident, and awarded her $183,551 for medical bills and approximately $37.1 million in punitive damages. This was described as "one of the largest bad-faith judgments in Colorado history".
- "Management Committee". Assurant.com. Retrieved 11 September 2015.
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- Dutch insurer Amev is buying VSB Groep NV bank
- Assurant’s IPO Debut Leads Quintet
- Fortune 500 list
- Usher, Ellis, Wisconsin: Its Story and Biography 1848-1913, Vol. 8, p. 2297
- http://www.nytimes.com/1990/11/28/business/business-people-new-top-posts-filled-by-amev-holdings.html Cuff, Daniel (November 28, 1990). “New Top Posts Filled By AMEV Holdings.” The New York Times.
- http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1990-01-23/business/9001060788_1_netherlands-insurer-amev (January 23, 1990). “Dutch insurer Amev is buying VSB Groep NV bank for...” Chicago Tribune online
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- FORTIS, INC. TO SELL U.S. AUTO INSURANCE AFFILIATE
- "Fortis To Acquire John Alden". Retrieved 2015-06-19.
- Fortis completes acquisition of American Bankers Insurance Group (ABI)
- http://www.insuranceinsider.com/Fortis-to-spin-off-US-insurance-arm (September 1, 2003) “Fortis to spin-off US insurance arm.” The Insurance Insider.
- "SEC Complaint: Assurant, Inc." (PDF). Retrieved 5 February 2016.
- http://www.assuranthealth.com/about-assurant-health/news-articles/assurant-to-exit-health-insurance-market-to-support-specialty-protection-products-and-services (June 10, 2015) “Assurant to Exit Health Insurance Market to Support Strategic Focus on Housing and Lifestyle Specialty Protection Products and Services” Press Release. Retrieved October 25, 2015
- Dmitrieva, Katia. "Sun Life to Buy Assurant Unit With $975 Million Investment". Bloomberg. Retrieved 5 February 2016.
- Marshall, Erin (2 Oct 2015). "Assurant completes sale of business lines to National General Holdings Corp.". Becker's Hospital Review. Retrieved 4 February 2016.
- https://globenewswire.com/news-release/2015/10/01/772889/10151426/en/National-General-Holdings-Corp-Announces-the-Closing-of-the-Acquisition-of-Certain-Business-Lines-and-Assets-From-Assurant-Health.html (October 1, 2015) “National General Holdings Corp. Announces the Closing of the Acquisition of Certain Business Lines and Assets From Assurant Health” Press Release. Retrieved October 25, 2015
- Assurant Solutions website
- Assurant Specialty Property description via BusinessWeek
- Steyer, Robert. "Big players dropping HSA business despite growth potential - Business Insurance". Business Insurance. Retrieved 20 July 2016.
- http://google.com/search?q=cache:jRwHVdE_eLMJ:www.ct.gov/oha State of Connecticut Office of the Healthcare Advocate
- http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/columnists/chi-tue-problem-insurance-0929sep29,0,1926150.column Chicago Tribune, After aneurysm, Assurant Health causes further headaches, 29 Sept 2009
- http://milwaukee.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/stories/2007/03/05/daily16.html?from_rss=1 Business Jrnl of Milwaukee, Oregon Regulators slap fine on Assurant Health, March 6, 2007
- "Insurer target HIV patients to drop coverage". Reuters. March 17, 2010.
- Insurance News, Supreme Court Rejects Assurant’s Appeal, March 24, 2010, http://insurancenewsnet.com/article.aspx?id=174515