State to consider nonprofit insurers' surplus

Legislation in Washington state would allow the insurance commissioner to consider nonprofit health insurers' surpluses when deciding whether their proposed premiums are reasonable, reported LifeHealthPro. "The state's three major insurers--all of whom are nonprofit companies--have amassed more than $2.4 billion in surplus," Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler said. "Yet under current law, I cannot consider a company's surplus when reviewing rates. It's like trying to ignore the elephant in the room." The bills (H.B. 1301 and S.B. 5247) are two versions of a measure that would give Kriedler the authority to consider these surpluses. However, Kriedler's office clarified that insurers' surpluses aren't the same as reserves. "Reserves are required to ensure a company can pay future claims," officials wrote in a comment on the measure. "Surplus is what's left over after accounting for all foreseeable future claims and expenses." Article