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West Virginia Workers Comp – Travelers Dominant Carrier


Travelers West Virginia Workers Comp

The State of West Virginia added in a new major player to its workers comp market.  I have read a number of recent articles concerning the loss of insureds by Brickstreet over the past few months. Brickstreet had been the monopolistic carrier for West Virginia Workers Compensation (including governmental agencies) for the last three years.

Picture of Travelers West Virginia Workers With Garden Background

Before Brickstreet started writing policies, West Virginia was a monopolistic state for Workers Comp. Their fund was in terrible shape. After examining their fund numbers, I would say no one person or entity was to blame for their Workers Comp crisis. This same situation happened in other monopolistic states – the market needed to be a free open market.

The marketplace in West Virginia is now wide open as of July 1 for all carriers that have registered to write coverage in the state. Surprisingly, I had not picked Travelers as being one of the dominant carriers in the state.  I had predicted that AIG would be the dominant carrier as of now due to the carrier’s experience with coal companies.

I had predicted they and other Workers Compensation insurance companies would take a wait and see attitude towards writing business there. I had picked two main carriers that I had thought would price coverage lower to get their foot in the door. I admit I was wrong.

Tip Of Pen West Virginia Workers Writing On Paper

Travelers is willing to write the Workers Comp coverage to almost all industries at last year’s renewal price. This is usually cheaper than all other bidders. Aggressive underwriting in a state is not necessarily a gamble. However, it can backfire on a carrier if they are just wholesale writing coverage for every business. Travelers may be heavily pursuing certain industries. I do not think they are “cherry-picking” certain accounts. See Today’s Worker’s Comp Term Of The Day for more on cherry-picking.


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One Response

  1. James,

    West Virginia was open to all Private Carriers on July 1, 2008. On July 1, 2010 Private Carriers are allowed to write Government agencies.


James J Moore - Workers Comp Expert

Raleigh, NC, United States

About The Author...

James founded a Workers’ Compensation consulting firm, J&L Risk Management Consultants, Inc. in 1996. J&L’s mission is to reduce our clients’ Workers Compensation premiums by using time-tested techniques. J&L’s claims, premium, reserve and Experience Mod reviews have saved employers over $9.8 million in earned premiums over the last three years. J&L has saved numerous companies from bankruptcy proceedings as a result of insurance overpayments.

James has over 27 years of experience in insurance claims, audit, and underwriting, specializing in Workers’ Compensation. He has supervised, and managed the administration of Workers’ Compensation claims, and underwriting in over 45 states. His professional experience includes being the Director of Risk Management for the North Carolina School Boards Association. He created a very successful Workers’ Compensation Injury Rehabilitation Unit for school personnel.

James’s educational background, which centered on computer technology, culminated in earning a Masters of Business Administration (MBA); an Associate in Claims designation (AIC); and an Associate in Risk Management designation (ARM). He is a Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) and a licensed financial advisor. The NC Department of Insurance has certified him as an insurance instructor. He also possesses a Bachelors’ Degree in Actuarial Science.

LexisNexis has twice recognized his blog as one of the Top 25 Blogs on Workers’ Compensation. J&L has been listed in AM Best’s Preferred Providers Directory for Insurance Experts – Workers Compensation for over eight years. He recently won the prestigious Baucom Shine Lifetime Achievement Award for his volunteer contributions to the area of risk management and safety. James was recently named as an instructor for the prestigious Insurance Academy.

James is on the Board of Directors and Treasurer of the North Carolina Mid-State Safety Council. He has published two manuals on Workers’ Compensation and three different claims processing manuals. He has also written and has been quoted in numerous articles on reducing Workers’ Compensation costs for public and private employers. James publishes a weekly newsletter with 7,000 readers.

He currently possess press credentials and am invited to various national Workers Compensation conferences as a reporter.

James’s articles or interviews on Workers’ Compensation have appeared in the following publications or websites:

  • Risk and Insurance Management Society (RIMS)
  • Entrepreneur Magazine
  • Bloomberg Business News
  • WorkCompCentral.com
  • Claims Magazine
  • Risk & Insurance Magazine
  • Insurance Journal
  • Workers Compensation.com
  • LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and other social media sites
  • Various trade publications


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