Sixteen months into #MeToo, companies seeking sexual harassment insurance are facing intense scrutiny from insurers — a trend that could put pressure on firms to institute organizational change.
A recent report, authored by an insurance industry consultant, reveals new measures that insurers are taking to mitigate the risks of writing harassment policies, including decisions to exclude entire industries from their portfolios.
The increased vigilance comes as harassment complaints filed with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission are on the rise, perhaps sparked by the wave of #MeToo revelations. The EEOC received 7,609 sexual harassment charges in its 2018 fiscal year, up nearly 14 percent from 2017. These numbers don’t include an unknown number of complaints settled by victims who never contacted the federal regulator.
Ten of the 32 insurance companies polled by Richard S. Betterley, publisher of the Betterley Report, said they were not underwriting the legal industry. Financial firms, including brokers, investment banks, and venture capital operations landed on the prohibited lists of eight insurers. Seven insurers said they’d blacklisted companies in the entertainment industry. Betterley shared a copy of his report, completed in December, exclusively with The Intercept and Type Investigations.
A recent report by an insurance industry consultant reveals that insurers are taking new measures to mitigate the risks of writing harassment policies.