U.S. property/casualty insurers reported premium returns of $8.5 billion during the first half of 2020, owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new AM Best commentary.

In its Best’s Commentary, “P/C Insurers Return $8.5 Billion in Premiums Through June 30, 2020,” AM Best states that although the line of business on which premiums were returned was not always disclosed, automobile-related coverage was the most prevalent, along with general liability, workers compensation, event cancelations and inland marine. The most common return amount appeared to be 15% of premium, with some returns as high a 25%.

The figures in the commentary derive from an AM Best review of second-quarter 2020 statutory statement footnote disclosures related to COVID-19, which found that 299 companies, in 71 groups and 15 single unaffiliated companies, reported premium returns. Some insurers noted that they expect to issue refunds in the third quarter. Other insurers, while not returning premiums, allowed forbearance measures such as extending payment terms for premiums and suspending terminations for late or non-payments, or reported that they intended to lower rates.

To access the full copy of this commentary, please visit http://www3.ambest.com/bestweek/purchase.asp?record_code=302213.