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Sunday, December 06, 2020

MLB teams sue insurance providers over billions in losses during pandemic

Every Major League Baseball team has joined the commissioner’s office and the league’s digital and streaming services in a lawsuit against their insurers over financial losses during the coronavirus pandemic.

In the lawsuit, dated Oct. 16 and obtained by CNN, the plaintiffs argued they bought “top-shelf All Risks Policies” to protect against losses such as those caused by the pandemic.

“Baseball paid millions of dollars in premiums year after year because it deliberately bought broad, more protective coverage” the lawsuit states, but the insurance companies “have very publicly refused to live up to their contractual obligation to pay what they promised.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 06, 2020 at 10:27 AM | 67 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: coronavirus

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   1. villageidiom Posted: December 06, 2020 at 12:58 PM (#5992747)
I have no inside info on these policies but I am skeptical that the language in these policies covered losses from being shut down in a pandemic. Yes, even on a so-called "all risks" policy.

But even if it did cover their losses, I'd think an insurer would need to audit MLB's books to see how much MLB lost in the pandemic, rather than taking MLB's word for it, before they'd pay one red cent. And I'd expect MLB would rather publicly shame the insurers into paying, than open their books for audit.

So here we are.
   2. cardsfanboy Posted: December 06, 2020 at 01:14 PM (#5992749)
In a battle of MLB vs Insurance companies, I'm going to root for MLB every day of the week. I consider Insurance companies to be below lawyers on the scale of contempt.... easily the most evil, by almost every definition, business model in place...

Having said that, they are evil, and because they are evil, they are probably very good at ensuring they never have to do anything good or even potentially cost them money. I remember a few years ago where MLB talked about this for some article that they spend all this money on the insurance for if something ever happened, that they were sure was never going to happen, but that they felt a need to spend the money just in case, knowing full and well that they were ultimately losing money on it. The fact that it's come time to pay up, and that the insurance people are fighting them is not a surprise at all, but still it's going to be interesting to see the ultimate settlement, as it would be impossible for the insurance companies to not pay out something in this situation.
   3. Starring Bradley Scotchman as RMc Posted: December 06, 2020 at 01:27 PM (#5992757)
"Can you say 'Force majeure', boys and girls? I knew you could...!"
   4. cardsfanboy Posted: December 06, 2020 at 01:37 PM (#5992761)
"Can you say 'Force majeure', boys and girls? I knew you could...!"


I can say it... don't know what it means.... (Actually I'm sure I'll mispronounce it)

Google says
unforeseeable circumstances that prevent someone from fulfilling a contract.


and I'm thinking, isn't that the entire point of having insurance for this situation?
   5. The Yankee Clapper Posted: December 06, 2020 at 01:38 PM (#5992762)
Didn’t MLB invoke its own force majeure clause to avoid paying players their full salaries? Could be difficult to argue that the insurance companies can’t invoke any similar language that might be in the insurance agreements. Obviously the precise language matters, but insurance companies have strong incentives to get it right - limiting what might otherwise be catastrophic liability - and they don’t seem to be losing any cases yet.
   6. cardsfanboy Posted: December 06, 2020 at 01:40 PM (#5992763)
Agree, but I think that it doesn't negate them from paying out something. I think this is a pretty major case that will affect the off season tremendously depending on the settlement. I don't think MLB even thinks they'll get full reimbursement back, but that anything they get back is more than nothing (yes I know... I'm captain Obvious) At the same time, as an insurance company they have been collecting on this for decades, and there is a real potential this will figure into whether MLB continues paying into these policies going forward, so they do have a line they need to walk to ensure that.
   7. Bhaakon Posted: December 06, 2020 at 01:40 PM (#5992765)
Don't "All-Risks" policies cover every potential risk that isn't specifically excluded within the contract? It would seem kind of...supremely opposite the point to put a vague exclusion like force majeure in there, since it seems like that kind of policy is designed to cover events outside of anticipation or control (because if they could be anticipated or controlled, they'd be open to specific exclusion). But then that's probably why I'm not a lawyer.
   8. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 06, 2020 at 01:41 PM (#5992767)
In a battle of MLB vs Insurance companies, I'm going to root for MLB every day of the week. I consider Insurance companies to be below lawyers on the scale of contempt.... easily the most evil, by almost every definition, business model in place...

You're probably letting yourself be swayed by your interactions with health insurers. Life and P&C companies do not behave that way. I've never had an issue with a P&C claim.
   9. The Yankee Clapper Posted: December 06, 2020 at 01:44 PM (#5992769)
I'm thinking, isn't that the entire point of having insurance for this situation?
I’m no expert, but reportedly most business interruption insurance requires physical damage to the insured property, and is not designed to cover pandemics.
   10. cardsfanboy Posted: December 06, 2020 at 01:46 PM (#5992771)
You're probably letting yourself be swayed by your interactions with health insurers. Life and P&C companies do not behave that way. I've never had an issue with a P&C claim.


I'm being swayed by every family member I've met who has had a car accident. Or a who refused to even file a claim because their car got damaged in a parking lot. I had a friend who last week swerved to avoid a deer and hit a pole, and the insurance agent flat out told her it would have been easier for her to file a claim if she would have just hit the deer. I'm talking about home owners insurance that has never paid a dime on any claim made for some made up bs legal reason, they are right in what they are saying, but they are bs and full of evil lawyer talk type of thing. I've never in my life have bother to make a single insurance claim other than health care, and never had a problem with them... so no, it's not my interactions with health insurers, it's everyone I know interactions with liability insurance.
   11. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 06, 2020 at 01:58 PM (#5992774)
I'm being swayed by every family member I've met who has had a car accident. Or a who refused to even file a claim because their car got damaged in a parking lot. I had a friend who last week swerved to avoid a deer and hit a pole, and the insurance agent flat out told her it would have been easier for her to file a claim if she would have just hit the deer. I'm talking about home owners insurance that has never paid a dime on any claim made for some made up bs legal reason, they are right in what they are saying, but they are bs and full of evil lawyer talk type of thing. I've never in my life have bother to make a single insurance claim other than health care, and never had a problem with them... so no, it's not my interactions with health insurers, it's everyone I know interactions with liability insurance.

That's weird. Are you using cut rate companies? I've filed at least 5 or 6 auto damage claims (State Farm and Met Life), and a major home owners claim (Met Life) when a tree hit my house. Never had them question me in the least, and paid promptly, even generously. Never raised my rates either. I do tend to keep long-term relationships with a single agent, which can help. They have a lot of pull.
   12. cardsfanboy Posted: December 06, 2020 at 02:09 PM (#5992777)
I'm talking over a period of 30 years from friends and family using pretty much every insurance company in the book, and ultimately the burden of proof is almost always on them, yes some do a great job, some suck some do okay. And it's not even about the company as I've seen companies I find reputable who fight it out (I'm thinking it has often times to do with piss poor agents more than the company) and I've never in my life have seen a homeowners policy actually pay out for anything trivial, sure big things they do, but policies that are designed to cover appliances or air conditioners, or others... never have I seen them pay out. There is always a loophole that is somehow the home owners fault that they are able to find.
   13. cardsfanboy Posted: December 06, 2020 at 02:14 PM (#5992779)
I work retail... we sell christmas trees, when a customer comes in to return a tree, even though the box clearly states that "if something doesn't work on this tree, call this number.(the manufacturer)" we will still take the tree back and refund the money. We don't assume the customer is lying, we don't do anything other than take the tree back (and literally I throw it away) even though the technical legal response is to refer them to the manufacturer. That is how a business should be run... Insurance companies start with the assumption that the person is lying and work back from there.
   14. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 06, 2020 at 02:17 PM (#5992781)
Insurance companies start with the assumption that the person is lying and work back from there.

To be fair, there is A LOT of insurance fraud. That's why I like working in life insurance. Pretty easy to tell if the person is dead.
   15. John DiFool2 Posted: December 06, 2020 at 02:26 PM (#5992783)
"Can you say 'Force majeure', boys and girls? I knew you could...!"


I prefer Rubycon myself, or maybe even the 2nd half of Cyclone [Madrigal Meridian]...
   16. cardsfanboy Posted: December 06, 2020 at 02:35 PM (#5992784)
To be fair, there is A LOT of insurance fraud. That's why I like working in life insurance. Pretty easy to tell if the person is dead.


I'm not trying to bag on you or your company, the model I am bothered with, and I absolutely agree that there is a large percentage of fraud out there. But considering my well known hatred of lawyers and a strict interpretation of laws, insurance agencies are first and foremost in enforcing the letter of the rules among any business that you as a normal person will deal with on a semi regular basis, instead of the spirit or intent. They hide behind the rules as much as they can, and I despise that. The rules are there as a guideline, not a religious doctrine that you follow. (right now I will have to say that I have one outstanding insurance claim...well technically my gf... our water heater leaked, it leaked enough to damage the floor, it caused black mold, and is going to cost roughly 20,000 to fix(mind you, I wouldn't expect the insurance to cover all of that, simply covering the replacement of the $700 water heater and the $2000 to fix the closet would be nice) ... the insurance argument is that we didn't report it within 6 days.... heck I didn't even know about it for a year... who the f goes into their water heater closet weekly?)

and no that isn't coloring my perception of them entirely, that similar story can be reported by about a half dozen other people I know. Home owners insurance is quite possibly the biggest scam on the planet.
   17. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 06, 2020 at 02:41 PM (#5992786)
and no that isn't coloring my perception of them entirely, that similar story can be reported by about a half dozen other people I know. Home owners insurance is quite possibly the biggest scam on the planet.

It's really interesting that two people can have such totally different experiences.
   18. cardsfanboy Posted: December 06, 2020 at 02:52 PM (#5992787)
It's really interesting that two people can have such totally different experiences.


True. I will make positive comments for anyone who does a good job. I know of several people who have had great experiences with their insurance... so I'm not going to single out any agency, at the same time, I have known several people who have had less than good experiences.

Some of it is the fault of the person making the claim and their expectations (I'll fully agree with that) other times it's the insurance agency pushing the legal rules which they absolutely do (and as a business should, but if you want positive comments from me, focusing on "legal" ways to get around doing what you claim you do is not a good look)

Ultimately, just like lawyers, not a fan of insurance companies.... way too many people complain about them for weeks after their interactions with them from my viewpoint... the good interactions are just not enough. They are below lawyers and entertainment providers in satisfaction ratings from my experience. I work retail and we don't have nearly the same percentage of complaints. (mind you, we should as republican policies started under Reagan has pretty much sapped the entire retail industry of employees)
   19. The Yankee Clapper Posted: December 06, 2020 at 03:43 PM (#5992793)
Although just reported, the lawsuit was actually filed on October 16 in Alameda County (Oakland) Superior Court in California, listing the Oakland Athletics as the lead plaintiff. I assume MLB is doing a bit of forum shopping, since it is headquartered in New York. Tough to get case documents without setting up an account, but this appears to be the MLB complaint.
   20. sunday silence (again) Posted: December 06, 2020 at 04:19 PM (#5992798)

Didn’t MLB invoke its own force majeure clause to avoid paying players their full salaries? Could be difficult to argue that the insurance companies can’t invoke any similar language that might be in the insurance agreements.


It would not be unusual to take a different legal position in a different cause of action even though its the same incident. While it does make MLB something of hypocrites I dont see it invalidating their cause of action.
   21. The Yankee Clapper Posted: December 06, 2020 at 05:04 PM (#5992803)
It would not be unusual to take a different legal position in a different cause of action even though its the same incident. While it does make MLB something of hypocrites I dont see it invalidating their cause of action.
Just seems unlikely that MLB would be astute enough to include force majeure language in its CBA with the players, but its supposedly sophisticated insurers would neglect to do so in their insurance contracts, but we shall see.
   22. Bhaakon Posted: December 06, 2020 at 05:28 PM (#5992810)
It's less a matter of astuteness and more the argument that MLB bought a policy specifically to cover the risk of events that would typically either be specifically excluded from normal policies or would fall under Force Majeure. And, assuming that the complaint you link is accurate in its representation, the policies specifically included communicable disease as a covered eventually.

IANAL, but a skim makes it seem the argument is less over whether an epidemic is one of the possible events covered and more about what constitutes property loss and damage.
   23. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 06, 2020 at 07:22 PM (#5992822)
IANAL, but a skim makes it seem the argument is less over whether an epidemic is one of the possible events covered and more about what constitutes property loss and damage.

The problem with a pandemic is that it's a non-poolable risk. It hits everyone at the same time. You wouldn't expect that sort of insurance to exist, since a payout scenario is likely to bankrupt the insurers. That's the reason most life insurance policies exclude acts of war.
   24. Brian C Posted: December 06, 2020 at 09:16 PM (#5992834)
You wouldn't expect that sort of insurance to exist...

Honestly I'd expect any kind of insurance to "exist", if the client is willing to pay the premium needed to make it work. Everything has an actuarial break-even point at the right price.
   25. GregD Posted: December 06, 2020 at 10:00 PM (#5992837)
IANAL, but courts dismissed lawsuits against insurers by restaurants and others on the basis of California state law:

Judge Wilson wrote, “Under California law, losses from inability to use property do not amount to “direct physical loss of or damage to property” within the ordinary and popular meaning of that phrase. Physical loss or damage occurs only when property undergoes a “distinct, demonstrable, physical alteration.”

He added, “An insured cannot recover by attempting to artfully plead impairment to economically valuable use of property as physical loss or damage to property.


If MLB has policies that go beyond these restrictions, we will find out.

Insurers’ ultimate response to state government has been that rulings against them would eliminate every insurance company. The risk is going to end up being carried by state or business owners no matter what gets ruled in the interim
   26. Obo Posted: December 06, 2020 at 10:39 PM (#5992839)
The problem with a pandemic is that it's a non-poolable risk. It hits everyone at the same time. You wouldn't expect that sort of insurance to exist, since a payout scenario is likely to bankrupt the insurers.

The insurance industry already has to deal with large-scale events, though perhaps not quite pandemic-scale. For example, when a major storm hits a heavily populated area the insurance claims can be colossal, enough to threaten the entire industry. One way insurance companies protect themselves is to sell insurance derivatives on the open market, thereby spreading the risk and effectively insuring themselves.
   27. Adam Starblind Posted: December 07, 2020 at 02:16 AM (#5992847)
I don’t think force majeur works in the insurance context. An exclusion has to be specific and will be construed against the insurer.
   28. BrianBrianson Posted: December 07, 2020 at 02:31 AM (#5992849)
Am I reading it correctly that snapper
1) works in insurance
2) is pretty much the only person I've ever heard of that had success dealing with their insurance company?
That sounds like an obvious selection effect.

Indeed, I've been trying to make a claim from a burglery, but the insurance company has astutely noticed that the amount is big enough it's more than I'll pay in premiums for some years, but small enough it wouldn't really be practical to sue them, so the most profitable thing for them to do is just not give me any money for the stuff stolen and door repairs I had to pay for. So that's the choice they're making.
   29. greenback used to say live and let live Posted: December 07, 2020 at 08:12 AM (#5992853)
To be fair, there is A LOT of insurance fraud. That's why I like working in life insurance. Pretty easy to tell if the person is dead.

My former employer denied a few claims over the years, but the one we always liked to talk about was for one celebrity who experienced a well-known event in the mid-1990s. I won't give the full name for privacy reasons, but we told the policy beneficiaries we weren't convinced that Tupac was dead.

Honestly I'd expect any kind of insurance to "exist", if the client is willing to pay the premium needed to make it work. Everything has an actuarial break-even point at the right price.

This is something libertarians like to say about health insurance, and it's really not true. I'm not going to bother charging you $9 million for a $10 million life insurance policy, because I reason that if you're willing to pay 90% of face on that large of a policy, then you probably know some fact about yourself that my underwriter didn't pick up. That's an extreme example for illustrative purposes, but in cases where the insurer's liability is unlimited or is potentially very large (like with health insurance), then it reaches a point where we're picking up nickels in front of bulldozers. It's just not worth the bother.
   30. McCoy Posted: December 07, 2020 at 08:54 AM (#5992855)
Never had a problem with my auto insurers so far despite having to file claims with them. Medical insurance for me has largely been a breeze for me. My wife had the pregnancy bills on her insurance and the pain there was the confusing billing and the time used straightening it all out.
   31. McCoy Posted: December 07, 2020 at 08:56 AM (#5992856)
Business insurance has always seemed like a bad investment. I've never had to deal with it but I've worked for businesses that routinely get their claims denied. I of course don't know how many get approved.
   32. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 07, 2020 at 09:15 AM (#5992860)
Am I reading it correctly that snapper
1) works in insurance
2) is pretty much the only person I've ever heard of that had success dealing with their insurance company?
That sounds like an obvious selection effect.


Well, maybe to some degree in the way I think/act, but I work in Life, not P&C, and most of my claims happened before I worked in Insurance at all (only been in Insurance for 10 years).

This is something libertarians like to say about health insurance, and it's really not true. I'm not going to bother charging you $9 million for a $10 million life insurance policy, because I reason that if you're willing to pay 90% of face on that large of a policy, then you probably know some fact about yourself that my underwriter didn't pick up. That's an extreme example for illustrative purposes, but in cases where the insurer's liability is unlimited or is potentially very large (like with health insurance), then it reaches a point where we're picking up nickels in front of bulldozers. It's just not worth the bother.

True, that's adverse selection, and it's a huge issue. That's why you can't buy private unemployment insurance for instance, or why individual disability is very expensive.

Not to mention moral hazard. If a business is well covered against all sorts of losses, they may not try very hard to mitigate their damages. I;m sure the insurers will argue MLB could have been playing much earlier, and generated much more revenue, if they hadn't been so worried about screwing the players.
   33. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: December 07, 2020 at 09:55 AM (#5992866)
My former employer denied a few claims over the years, but the one we always liked to talk about was for one celebrity who experienced a well-known event in the mid-1990s. I won't give the full name for privacy reasons, but we told the policy beneficiaries we weren't convinced that Tupac was dead.

The "Tupac is alive" conspiracy theorists like to claim, among other things, that his family didn't collect on his life insurance. So I guess that was true?
   34. . Posted: December 07, 2020 at 10:00 AM (#5992867)
I have no inside info on these policies but I am skeptical that the language in these policies covered losses from being shut down in a pandemic.


Also no inside info, but MLB was never actually shut down, either, at least not by act of law. But in any event, it would seem tough to recover on a business insurance policy when the business actually ... you know ... operated.
   35. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: December 07, 2020 at 11:15 AM (#5992872)
I had a friend who last week swerved to avoid a deer and hit a pole, and the insurance agent flat out told her it would have been easier for her to file a claim if she would have just hit the deer.


Bad form to swerve for deer. Brake hard sure, but don't swerve. There's a good chance of doing more damage if you swerve off the road than the impact from the animal, plus as your friend is learning, deer accidents are 'acts of god', swerving and hitting a tree is you ####### up. Do swerve for moose though - their long legs put their heavy bodies pretty much on the windshield of a car.
   36. JL72 Posted: December 07, 2020 at 11:44 AM (#5992876)
Bad form to swerve for deer. Brake hard sure, but don't swerve.


Deer also move. I hit one years ago. I was in the left lane (of a four lane divided highway) late at night and came across a deer in my lane facing such that it had just crossed the right lane. Had it continued, it would have been in the ditch in the median. I braked hard and swerved to the right, only to learn that most deer, when frightened, jump back to where they came from (or so I am told). So I swerved right back into the deer.
   37. McCoy Posted: December 07, 2020 at 11:58 AM (#5992878)
I'm also of the don't swerve camp but about two weeks ago I was driving down the highway when a bunch of packing wrap wafted into my lane. I didn't want to swerve at those speeds and congestion and hitting the brakes was probably just as dangerous. So I went through it and it ended up wrapping around my axle. That was a fun 60 minutes cutting that stuff away.
   38. Bhaakon Posted: December 07, 2020 at 01:38 PM (#5992893)
Logically, I suppose, don't swerve. As a practical matter, a lot of those decisions are made in a time frame without time for reflection, and perhaps even time to discern whether it's a deer or a dog or a kid on a bike before the window for decision-making has passed.
   39. cardsfanboy Posted: December 07, 2020 at 01:45 PM (#5992897)
Bad form to swerve for deer. Brake hard sure, but don't swerve. There's a good chance of doing more damage if you swerve off the road than the impact from the animal, plus as your friend is learning, deer accidents are 'acts of god', swerving and hitting a tree is you ####### up. Do swerve for moose though - their long legs put their heavy bodies pretty much on the windshield of a car.



you do realize that a pole is a non living life form, while a deer is a living life form, the concept of braking to reduce damage to your vehicle, falls under the concept of pure evilness... you break, you swerve, you don't hit the living creature.... that is just normal decency.
   40. Bhaakon Posted: December 07, 2020 at 01:50 PM (#5992899)
What if you eat the deer afterwards?
   41. Adam Starblind Posted: December 07, 2020 at 01:51 PM (#5992900)
I was always told to speed into the deer, because if you don't hit it hard enough he ends up through the windshield, whereas if you bash him at 60mph, you have a good chance of hitting him out of the ballpark. No?
   42. McCoy Posted: December 07, 2020 at 02:07 PM (#5992907)
Swerving off the road is far more dangerous to yourself
   43. cardsfanboy Posted: December 07, 2020 at 02:07 PM (#5992908)
Just a small reminder, there are 400 deaths a year attributed to animals in the U.S. 200 of them are deer related.
   44. SoSH U at work Posted: December 07, 2020 at 02:08 PM (#5992909)
you do realize that a pole is a non living life form, while a deer is a living life form, the concept of braking to reduce damage to your vehicle, falls under the concept of pure evilness... you break, you swerve, you don't hit the living creature.... that is just normal decency.


Swerving can also lead you to hit a different life form. Or do greater harm to you and anyone else in your vehicle.

You hit the deer. And, as my dad instructed me, don't say to the officer "I hit a deer," Tell him, "The deer hit me."

   45. cardsfanboy Posted: December 07, 2020 at 02:13 PM (#5992911)
Swerving can also lead you to hit a different life form. Or do greater harm to you and anyone else in your vehicle.


It can, but it's less likely than actually intentionally making the decision to hit something. Even at 50% hit rate, swerving will produce 50% less accidents. (obviously braking is also going to help, and by avoiding what you can in front of you, you are reducing your velocity which is the real killer, and if you hit a deer at 40 mph vs a pole at 30mph, you have a better chance of reducing damage and you aren't killing a living being)
   46. Tyhand7 Posted: December 07, 2020 at 03:21 PM (#5992924)
Late to the party - I am an independent insurance agent specializing in home and auto insurance. I do not deal with business insurance. My thoughts are that MLB has "All Risk Insurance - except what is excluded" Perhaps that was how it was sold and all that was heard was the "All Risk" part. Typically during an annual review the exclusions should be pointed out however who knows how in depth or if they have an annual review at all.


Regarding running off the road instead of hitting the deer, any quality insurance company should cover that as a not at fault accident under your 'other than collision' deductible coverage - if you have that.
   47. Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: December 07, 2020 at 03:37 PM (#5992929)
Perhaps that was how it was sold and all that was heard was the "All Risk" part. Typically during an annual review the exclusions should be pointed out however who knows how in depth or if they have an annual review at all.


If they are, as they claim, paying millions of dollars in premiums, aren't they going to have their lawyers going over these policies pretty carefully?

Also strange that a cartel of 30 multi-billionaires feels the need to take out insurance. One (who, it should be clear, is me) would think that when you've got that kind of scratch at hand that nothing that might happen is bad enough to be worth hedging against. It's not like this is Mike's Pizza Joint, where if the kitchen catches fire, Mike is out on the street.
   48. cardsfanboy Posted: December 07, 2020 at 07:21 PM (#5992973)
Also strange that a cartel of 30 multi-billionaires feels the need to take out insurance. One (who, it should be clear, is me) would think that when you've got that kind of scratch at hand that nothing that might happen is bad enough to be worth hedging against. It's not like this is Mike's Pizza Joint, where if the kitchen catches fire, Mike is out on the street.


From an article that was posted on here earlier in the year or from a few years back, MLB has been hedging the bet for a catastrophic issue since the 1960's or so, they have been paying into this insurance for a while, fully knowing that it's unlikely to pay out ever for them. I think the article at the time was pointing out how MLB was paying for this while the other sports had lesser or no policies.(befitting their lesser status imho)
   49. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: December 07, 2020 at 07:52 PM (#5992978)
He added, “An insured cannot recover by attempting to artfully plead impairment to economically valuable use of property as physical loss or damage to property.


So, if I understand correctly, MLB had a policy that protected against property loss in a pandemic, but the definition of property loss is such that it only applies to physical damage to the business's infrastructure -- stadiums, etc.

Under what circumstances would that clause actually pay out then? Zombie apocalypse?
   50. The Yankee Clapper Posted: December 07, 2020 at 08:22 PM (#5992981)
you do realize that a pole is a non living life form, while a deer is a living life form, the concept of braking to reduce damage to your vehicle, falls under the concept of pure evilness... you break, you swerve, you don't hit the living creature.... that is just normal decency.
Swerving for squirrels, putting yourself, your passengers, and those around you at greater risk is not superior morality, it’s stupidity.
   51. cardsfanboy Posted: December 07, 2020 at 08:26 PM (#5992983)
Swerving for squirrels, putting yourself, your passengers, and those around you at greater risk is not superior morality, it’s stupidity.


It's playing the odds. I'm glad you like to run over squirrels and stuff, but swerving is the morally superior option, generally speaking if you are doing the 'look ahead for 10 seconds driving' like any decent driver, it makes it probable you don't damage your passengers..... but sure be evil because you love the sound of running over squirrels and cleaning the blood off of your vehicle, vs a small swerve that is going to cause no issues 90% of the time.
   52. Mayor Blomberg Posted: December 07, 2020 at 09:08 PM (#5992987)
I don't see the property loss at all.
The "time element"? Well, maybe some part of it works. But let's remember that the issue is the ability to use the property. MLB could have used it more but didn't want to extend the season. That's well documented.
   53. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: December 07, 2020 at 09:58 PM (#5993002)
It can, but it's less likely than actually intentionally making the decision to hit something. Even at 50% hit rate, swerving will produce 50% less accidents. (obviously braking is also going to help, and by avoiding what you can in front of you, you are reducing your velocity which is the real killer,
and if you hit a deer at 40 mph vs a pole at 30mph, you have a better chance of reducing damage and you aren't killing a living being)


First, your math is wrong, because swerving most certainly can cause accidents, as your friend found out. So sure, you miss 5 out of 10 dear, and hit 3 out of 10 poles. And 2nd, hitting a pole at 30 is much worse than a deer at 40. Poles are anchored into the ground and don't really absorb the collision at all, your car does. Plus, they may have very heavy transformers on them that may very well fall on you. A deer is moving around and will definitely absorb some of the force from the hit.

So yay, you managed to swerve and miss the deer, one of the most successful species out there when it comes to human involvement. We killed all their predators and planted a #### ton of crops for them. Deer populations are so far above their historical norm, it's estimated there were 20,000 in NY state in the early 1900's, and now there's an estimated 1,000,000. Leading cause of death is far and away starvation due to massive overpopulation.

So I stick by not swerving for deer, swerving for moose, and eating both of them if you do kill one.
   54. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: December 07, 2020 at 10:09 PM (#5993010)
So I stick by not swerving for deer, swerving for moose, and eating both of them if you do kill one.

I don't think road kill deer are edible, or at least not palatable. Something about the adrenaline tainting the meat.

I do think you should swerve if you can to avoid killing an animal. Not off the road, but reasonable evasion. I'll brake rapidly for dogs and cats and deer and squirrels and other animals, and don't much care if someone rear ends me. That's their fault for not staying far enough back.
   55. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: December 07, 2020 at 10:10 PM (#5993011)
Deer populations are so far above their historical norm, it's estimated there were 20,000 in NY state in the early 1900's, and now there's an estimated 1,000,000.


It seems odd to posit a number (20,000) that is likely caused by massive habitat destruction and overhunting as a 'historical norm'.
   56. The Yankee Clapper Posted: December 07, 2020 at 10:54 PM (#5993018)
There are more whitetail deer now than before the European settlement of North America. No shortage by any measure.
   57. villageidiom Posted: December 07, 2020 at 10:57 PM (#5993019)
I don't see the property loss at all.
The "time element"? Well, maybe some part of it works.
Time element coverage - basically, lost income due while the facility is closed because it's unusable - would generally only be triggered if there's a covered property loss that caused the facility to become unusable. If the property loss isn't covered, the time element wouldn't be covered.
I'm being swayed by every family member I've met who has had a car accident. Or a who refused to even file a claim because their car got damaged in a parking lot. I had a friend who last week swerved to avoid a deer and hit a pole, and the insurance agent flat out told her it would have been easier for her to file a claim if she would have just hit the deer. I'm talking about home owners insurance that has never paid a dime on any claim made for some made up bs legal reason, they are right in what they are saying, but they are bs and full of evil lawyer talk type of thing. I've never in my life have bother to make a single insurance claim other than health care, and never had a problem with them... so no, it's not my interactions with health insurers, it's everyone I know interactions with liability insurance.
Where to begin? I guess I'll start at the end with the pedantic note that none of what you described is covered by liability insurance. Then I'll note that in most cases "some made up bs legal reason" translates to "laws and facts and contracts". When contract language is ambiguous the courts usually rule against the party who drafted the language, with for personal auto or homeowners policies is the insurer. So if an insurer keeps getting their way it's generally because they're not just correct but unambiguously so. I know it's vogue these days to blame unambiguous results on rigged made-up fake news bs systems when the result isn't in your favor, but that doesn't mean it's a good look. It might, however, be the kind of argument MLB might make in public because there are a lot of rubes who would want to believe it's real. Finally, what you said that your friend said that her agent said about ease of filing an auto insurance claim is definitely wrong, so I'm sure someone in the chain of communication has no idea what they're talking about.
Typically during an annual review the exclusions should be pointed out however who knows how in depth or if they have an annual review at all.
In business insurance, on an MLB-size scale, the business seeking insurance usually has a whole risk management team who understand insurance coverages and contract language and negotiate terms specific to their business. That's why I was saying earlier that it's hard to know what is happening in this case without knowing the contract language. It's possible that MLB negotiated for this. I'm just skeptical, as others have pointed out, that any insurer would want to take on pandemic risk - or if so, that they would simply take MLB's word on the extent of the losses.
Also strange that a cartel of 30 multi-billionaires feels the need to take out insurance. One (who, it should be clear, is me) would think that when you've got that kind of scratch at hand that nothing that might happen is bad enough to be worth hedging against. It's not like this is Mike's Pizza Joint, where if the kitchen catches fire, Mike is out on the street.
It's not strange at all. Large corporations like stable earnings streams, and insurance helps to make that happen.

Also, at first glance I was sure you said Mike Piazza's Joint, and I was wondering why we had to drag Mike Piazza into this. I thought you were going down the path of saying there'd be a lot fewer kitchen fires if players like Chris Truby, Albert Belle, and Mike Piazza didn't engage in satanic worship, or something like that.
   58. BrianBrianson Posted: December 08, 2020 at 02:54 AM (#5993034)

It seems odd to posit a number (20,000) that is likely caused by massive habitat destruction and overhunting as a 'historical norm'.


Yes, we're very bad at setting historical baselines (especially in places like New York State, where humans starting ####### up the ecology as soon as the ice sheets left), but we've killed off almost all their predators (wolves, cougars), we've killed off the animals that prevent forests from growing (mammoths, mostly, maybe bison and ground sloths?), so they're way above what they'd be in unmodified habitat.

That said, I'd rather hit a deer than a mammoth with my car.
   59. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: December 08, 2020 at 04:50 AM (#5993036)
I don't think road kill deer are edible, or at least not palatable. Something about the adrenaline tainting the meat.
Well, definitely not kosher; cars are not shochtim.
   60. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: December 08, 2020 at 09:07 AM (#5993041)
I have a friend who is an Australian in the insurance business. According to him anything smaller than a Kangaroo it is safer to hit rather than swerve and anything bigger it is safer to swerve than hit. In aggregate, obviously, individual instances can differ.
   61. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: December 08, 2020 at 09:15 AM (#5993043)
I don't think road kill deer are edible, or at least not palatable. Something about the adrenaline tainting the meat.


I've butchered and eaten a deer that had been recently hit by an acquaintance, aside from having to toss one of the front quarters of the animal due to too much damage it tasted fine. It's not like deer hunted by more conventional means don't have adrenaline running through them after they get shot. As long as you know when the deer was hit there's no issue with them. Just need to pay attention to the weather and make sure the meat doesn't get too warm - that's what will spoil it.



And yes, my 'historical norm' was a bad descriptor. As pointed out by others, the general point stands, deer population and range are at an all time high.
   62. McCoy Posted: December 08, 2020 at 10:48 AM (#5993056)
10 seconds ahead seems like an unreasonable expectation, especially at night and in places where deer roam.

Also in our hypothetical that CFB set out we already know the odds of going off road or hitting the deer. It's 100% going off road or 100% hit deer based on your choice.

Swerving is the most dangerous mistake a driving can make according to the data.
   63. McCoy Posted: December 08, 2020 at 10:55 AM (#5993057)
   64. CStallion Posted: December 08, 2020 at 11:43 AM (#5993068)
A bit late to the party too... I happen to work in P&C insurance for large corpoates though not in the US.

Quite an amusing thread ... I don't have any insider info on MLB's insurance arrangement but think post #1 probably nailed this.

For #31, some companies have bad brokers who don't advise coverage or represent claims properly.

Edit: now that I have browsed thru the non roadkill posts. Have to say that VI really knows his stuff, esp on #57.
   65. Srul Itza Posted: December 08, 2020 at 11:58 AM (#5993074)
It's not strange at all. Large corporations like stable earnings streams, and insurance helps to make that happen.


Really large corporations that I have represented often are self-insured for some risks, and buy insurance coverage for others. Many times, for liability, where they are self-insured, they still have the insurance company administer the claims.
   66. Ziggy: social distancing since 1980 Posted: December 08, 2020 at 12:46 PM (#5993086)
I thought you were going down the path of saying there'd be a lot fewer kitchen fires if players like Chris Truby, Albert Belle, and Mike Piazza didn't engage in satanic worship, or something like that.


This is true too, but I didn't think it was germane to the thread.
   67. villageidiom Posted: December 08, 2020 at 02:04 PM (#5993107)
This is true too, but I didn't think it was germane to the thread.
The last time Chris Truby, Albert Belle, and Mike Piazza were all referenced in a single thread, let alone a single sentence, probably 87% of the posts weren't germane to the thread.

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