Frequently Asked Questions

What is Berkley Professional?

Berkley Professional Liability (A Berkley Company) is a wholly owned subsidiary of W.R. Berkley, a Fortune 500 commercial lines property and casualty insurance provider. Berkley Professional specializes in management liability insurance (Directors and Officers, Fiduciary, and Employment Practices Liability) for large publicly traded and private entities based in the United States of America and Canada. Berkley Professional was founded in October 2008 by a team of management liability professionals with a combined total of over fifty years experience in insurance and financial services. Backed by superior financial strength and unburdened by legacy claims, Berkley Professional brings fresh capacity, underwriting acumen, claims handling expertise, and extensive relationships with insureds and brokers to the management liability marketplace. Berkley Professional operates as a managing general underwriter for professional liability insurance lines written on behalf of Berkley Insurance Company, Carolina Casualty Insurance Company, Admiral Insurance Company, and Nautilus Insurance Company, all member companies of W.R. Berkley Corporation. Financial Strength ratings (as of YE 2008): Berkley Insurance Company, A.M. Best A+ XV; S&P A+ Carolina Casualty Insurance Company, A.M. Best A+ VIII; S&P A+ Admiral Insurance Company, A.M. Best A+ XII; S&P A+ Nautilus Insurance Company, A.M. Best A+ X; S&P A+ Gemini Insurance Company, A.M. Best A+ XIV, S&P A+

What is WR Berkley Corporation?

W. R. Berkley Corporation (“WRB” on NYSE), founded in 1967, is a Fortune 500 company and among the nation’s premier commercial lines property casualty insurance providers. Berkley operates in five segments: Specialty Insurance; Regional Property Casualty Insurance; Alternative Markets; Reinsurance; and International. Each of Berkley’s operating units participates in a niche market requiring specialized knowledge about a territory or product. Berkley’s competitive advantage lies in its long-term strategy of decentralized operations, allowing each of its units to identify and respond quickly and effectively to changing market conditions and local customer needs. This decentralized structure provides financial accountability and incentives to unit management and enables Berkley to attract and retain the highest caliber professionals. Berkley has the expertise and resources to capitalize on its strengths in the present environment, and the flexibility to anticipate, innovate and respond to whatever opportunities and challenges the future may hold. W. R. Berkley Corporation Financial Highlights (FY 2007)*: Revenues of $5.5 billion Total assets of $16.8 billion Policyholder surplus of $3.2 billion (combined total of WRB insurance company subsidiaries as of 9/30/08) Stockholders' equity of $3.5 billion Net Tangible Assets of $3.4 billion *Updated FY 2008 financial highlights pending issuance of FY 2008 10K and Yellow Book. W.R. Berkley Insurance Company Financial Strength Ratings (YE 2008): A.M. Best A+ (Superior) Standard & Poor's A+ (Strong) Moody's A2 (Strong)

How is Berkley Professional organized?

Berkley Professional is a centralized underwriting organization based in New York. Our expansion plans include regional positions in major cities in the U.S. and Canada aligned with our distribution channels in order to transact business more easily.

What is Berkley Professional’s target market segment? Will Berkley Professional write both public and private companies?

Berkley Professional will target large public and private companies. Targeted accounts will be domiciled in the United States and Canada.

Which lines of coverage will Berkley Professional write?

Our initial focus will be on Excess D&O coverage (A/B/C and Side-A DIC) and Excess Fiduciary coverage, with plans to expand into Excess Employment Practices Liability coverage in the intermediate term.

Will Berkley Professional write primary coverage?

We are currently focused on writing excess business, but our goal in the intermediate term is to become a primary writer, depending on opportunities and the insurance market.

What is Berkley Professional’s targeted excess attachment point(s) and capacity?

Attachment points for Directors and Officers Liability A/B/C coverage will generally be at $50mm+ for publicly traded companies and $10mm+ for privately held companies. Attachment points for our various Side-A products will generally start at $10mm. For private companies and Canadian companies trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange only, attachment points will be at $10mm for A/B/C and at $10mm for Side-A coverage. Capacity for all products, whether public or private D&O A/B, D&O Side-A, or Fiduciary, will be up to $15mm.

Will Berkley Professional write Financial Institutions?

Berkley Professional is currently reviewing the FI segment to determine our underwriting appetite in this area.

Does Berkley Professional have a Lead Side-A DIC policy?

Berkley Professional has a lead Side-A DIC insurance policy available now on a nonadmitted basis via Admiral Insurance Company paper, A.M. Best rated A+ XII. As of January 8, 2009, Berkley has launched a fifty-state-wide lead Side-A DIC policy filing for admitted status via Berkley Insurance Company, A.M. Best rated A+ XV. Berkley writes excess follow-form DIC coverage on an admitted basis in most states. Berkley also offers lead Side-A DIC coverage on an admitted basis in Canada.

Will Berkley Professional target any specific industry segments?

We will not exclude any specific commercial account class of business or industry segment.

Will Berkley Professional write excess limits over any carrier?

We will evaluate every risk and every carrier on a case-by-case, ongoing basis. At present, we will write excess over all carriers.

What is Berkley Professional’s claims handling process?

Berkley Professional is committed to servicing our customers' needs, especially in the event of a claim.  We strive to respond to correspondance and inquiries quickly and in a professional manner.  Our in house staff of claims professionals in managed by Mike Nicolai, who is the Claims Vice President and who has thirty-five years of claims experience at a major insurance brokerage, where he worked as a client advisor and claims advocate specializing in complex Director & Officers and other management and professional liability claims.  Mike, the Claims group, and our Management Team are available at any time to answer your questions.

 What is the relationship between Berkley Professional and Monitor Liability Managers?

Berkley Professional was created to focus on the management liability needs of large publicly traded and large private companies in order to build out another segment of management liability insurance market that previously had not been addressed by W.R. Berkley. Monitor has a strong franchise focused predominantly on smaller public and smaller private company risks, and on specialty lawyers’ professional liability lines.

Which Berkley Insurance Company entity will issue my insurance policy?

The issuing company paper will be negotiated as to the best possible fit for our insured’s. Berkley Professional can utilize Carolina Casualty, Admiral, Nautilus and Berkley Insurance company paper to accomplish the goal of ensuring that our insureds and brokers enjoy first-rate policy issuance and servicing.

What is Berkley Professional’s broker appointment procedure?

Currently Berkley Professional utilizes Monitor’s broker appointment procedure and infrastructure. Anyone who is appointed to conduct business with Monitor is also approved to conduct business with Berkley Professional. If you are interested in an appointment, please contact us.