Ten years ago when I mentioned the words "terrorism insurance" to clients, I was often told with a wink and a grin, "no one is coming after me and my business. " 911 woke people up to the world around us, but most of us assumed it would be an isolated incident. Today, after events like the Boston Marathon bombing, and the all too common crazed gunman, attitudes are changing and business owners are looking at the threat of terrorism in a whole new light.
The Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) is a United States federal law signed into law by President George W. Bush on November 26, 2002. The Act created a federal "backstop" for insurance claims related to acts of terrorism. The Act "provides for a transparent system of shared public and private compensation for insured losses resulting from acts of terrorism." Today the law is known as the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (TRIPRA) and is set to expire on December 31, 2014.
Terrorism is defined and limited to violent and dangerous acts exceeding $5,000,000 in total damage and needs government certification to qualify as Terrorism. It is intended to cover all lines of coverage with the exception of Auto, Crime, and Professional Liability, but with a looming expiration date and various political opinions the law is sure to continue to evolve.
Terrorism coverage is included in most policies automatically. For those policies that offer it as an option, consider that the premium typically costs 1% or 2% of the coverage premium and is well worth it if you find yourself in need.
Let's face it, the world we live in is changing and we need to change with it. Insurance is a business that is constantly evolving and adapting to new situations. Don't be left uninsured because you elected not to evolve with it.