The Main Street America Group, through its affiliated writing companies, will return nearly $27 million in premium relief to its commercial lines and private passenger auto insureds. The relief efforts will help ease negative financial impacts to policyholders as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and reflects a notable decrease in driving – and accidents – by personal auto customers.
Main Street America commercial insureds with a business owners policy and/or a contractors policy will receive a two-month premium credit equal to 20 percent of policy premiums due in April and May 2020. While other insurance companies have recently announced premium relief for personal auto customers, supporting commercial customers in this way is not common.
“We know businesses are taking a hit right now. We wanted to support our commercial customers, too, during this challenging time,” said Chris Listau, Main Street America’s president and CEO.
The commercial premium credit applies to policies in force as of March 31, 2020. The company estimates it will credit approximately $10.4 million in premium to customers with these policies. Commercial Auto, Workers’ Compensation, Umbrella and other commercial policies are excluded.
Main Street America personal auto policyholders will also benefit. Insureds with personal auto policies in force as of March 31, 2020 will receive a one-time relief payment of $50 per eligible vehicle via check, which they can spend as they choose. Main Street America estimates it will provide premium relief of approximately $16.5 million to personal auto customers.
“As a mutual holding company, we value our policyholders and recognize their important role as stakeholders in our company,” said Listau. “Safer-at-home orders and other measures have resulted in a notable decrease in average miles driven per day as well as a subsequent decline in personal auto claims, and we expect these trends to continue in the near term.
“While the impact on commercial lines is different, many small business owners have also had unprecedented impacts. Most restaurants have been restricted to drive-through or take-out operations only. Most non-essential retail businesses have been closed. And many contractors and service businesses have been affected,” added Listau. “Main Street America is committed and prepared to serve our policyholders, independent agents, employees and communities during this trying time. As conditions change, we will continue to make decisions in real-time to make sure those counting on us have the support and protection they need.”
In addition to premium relief efforts, Main Street America is supporting policyholders in other ways, including: accepting premium payment extension requests without penalties or fees up to 60 days; offering restaurant insureds hired and non-owned auto coverage for food delivery; and postponing physical premium audits and inspections for commercial insureds. The company is also providing temporary coverage for individuals using personal vehicles to deliver food from local restaurants, extending rental car return days if vehicles cannot be repaired or returned due to business closures, and waiving inside inspections of homes.
Main Street America’s relief efforts also extend to individuals, families and businesses in communities where we operate. Through our NGM Charitable Foundation and employee matching gift program, we are providing funds to support relief efforts to those facing financial uncertainty and other needs. Our efforts support those of the American Family Insurance group of companies, who are committed to assisting customers who are experiencing financial hardship from the pandemic. Collectively, the enterprise has pledged $4 million in support of pandemic relief and other nonprofit efforts.