Question from an IIABNY member: One of my accounts is a new owner of a business since November 2014. The name changed but they kept part of the old company name under a "doing business as" name. The experience modification factor for the old owner was 1.13, but there was a claim and when the new owner took over his mod was now 1.31. Would the new owner have to keep this mod for his business if he took over? Wouldn’t he start with 1.00 mod? He kept a few of the employees, put a safety practice in place and hired a safety consultant.
Answer: Under the New York Experience Rating Plan Manual rules, “The experience for any entity undergoing a change in ownership will be retained or transferred to the experience ratings of the acquiring, surviving or new entity unless specifically excluded by this Plan.” The rules go on to say,
How could I not write a post about this one? Growing, possession, sale, etc. of marijuana, as you may have heard, is illegal under federal law. Conversely, an increasing number of states have made it legal, at least for certain uses. New York is in the midst of implementing a temporary law that made use of medical marijuana legal.
Two states and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana for its, um, traditional use. In Colorado, you can buy it in stores, not on street corners. This is the sort of use that Congress had in mind when it prohibited marijuana back in the 1930’s. Consequently, the U.S. has a classic federal-vs.-state conflict when it comes to the regulation of this substance.
This comes back to insurance. (Repeat after me: All things come back to insurance.) Property insurance policies do not cover “contraband.” “Contraband” refers to goods prohibited by law. Marijuana certainly seems to fit that definition, at least if one is referring to federal law. Suppose, though, that the insurance and the property are in a state that has taken a more tolerant legal attitude? Does the insurance cover it then?
A federal district court in Colorado decided this question two weeks ago, and it said, “Yes.”