The general dividend is a portion of Pinnacol's surplus paid to policyholders who earn it through their commitment to workplace safety and controlling claims costs, and as a result of favorable market conditions. We are issuing a general dividend in 2017 of approximately $50 million.
If you have any questions regarding the general dividend, take a look at the Frequently Asked Questions below, or contact a customer service representative at (303) 361-4000 or (800) 873-7242.
What is a dividend?
A dividend is a portion of a mutual insurance company's surplus, paid to stockholders.
Because Pinnacol doesn't have stockholders, we return a portion of our surplus to our policyholders that earn it through their commitment to workplace safety and effective claims management.
Why don't you lower your rates instead of paying a dividend?
In 2017, Pinnacol did both: lowered rates and paid a dividend.
Rates and dividends are two very different calculations that occur under different circumstances.
Rates are based on future projections; dividends are based on past experience. Our ultimate goal is rate stability year after year, so we set prices based on our best information about the future. But we wait to pay dividends until results from the previous period are available. The closer our rates reflect actual results, the smaller the dividends.
Will you pay a dividend again next year?
Dividends are never guaranteed, because they can be impacted by policyholder claims costs, catastrophic events, the performance of our investment portfolio and other factors. None of these can be predicted with absolute accuracy.
What are the criteria for receiving the general dividend?
- The policy has an expiration date between June 2, 2015, and June 1, 2016
- The policy is in good standing
- In most instances, the underwriting program or individual policy has a loss ratio better than 71.3 percent. Different circumstances apply to special programs.
How is the general dividend determined?
The general dividend is determined based on premium size and loss ratio, factors that contribute to Pinnacol's underwriting performance and, ultimately, surplus.
How much general dividend money should I expect to receive?
Dividend amounts vary based on each underwriting program's or individual policyholder's premium amount and loss ratio. The average policyholder general dividend being paid in 2017 is $941. Again, dividends are based on a policyholder's underwriting performance.
When will I receive my dividend check?
General dividend checks will be distributed to qualified policyholders beginning in March 2017. Many of the checks will be mailed, but some will be hand-delivered by agents. All checks should be delivered by late April.
Is the dividend taxable?
Because the general dividend is a return of premium to the policyholder, Pinnacol does not issue a 1099 for the dividend. If policyholders have tax questions related to their general dividend, they should consult with their tax advisor.
Why not credit my premium instead of sending me a check?
A check gives a policyholder more control over how to use this money; however, checks less than $25 will be applied to the policyholder's account.
I've filed very few claims with Pinnacol. Why didn't I receive a general dividend?
Dividend amounts are based on each policyholder's contribution to surplus through both premiums paid and loss ratio.
If you or your underwriting program does not have a loss ratio better than 71.3 percent, you will not qualify for a dividend.
If a safety group program does not have a loss ratio better than 71.3 percent, then individual members will not receive a general dividend, regardless of their claims history.
Pinnacol will not be issuing checks for amounts of $25 or less.
If a policyholder owes Pinnacol money, the dividend amount will be applied to the outstanding balance in most circumstances.
Policyholders with a non-compliant audit will not receive a dividend.
Are policyholders that participate in one of Pinnacol's alternative-pricing programs eligible to receive a general dividend?
Yes. Policyholders that participate in Pinnacol's alternative rating programs such as Large Deductible Programs and Group Large Deductible Programs are eligible to receive general dividends. The group and the individual policyholder must have contributed to surplus to be eligible.
Participants in the Safety Group Dividend Program or Individual Loss Control Dividend Program are eligible to receive both their program and general dividends.