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US Senate Passes Bill That Would Extend Federal Insurance Backstop


Yesterday, the US Senate passed the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2014 (TRIPRA), with a strong bipartisan vote of 93 to 4. The bill would extend the federal terrorism insurance backstop for seven years.

The legislation includes congressional guidance clarifying that acts of cyber terrorism fall within the scope of TRIPRA provided that the requirements to trigger the program are met.

Meanwhile, the House Financial Services Committee in June released the TRIA Reform Act of 2014, which would extend the federal terrorism insurance backstop for five years. It explicitly includes nuclear, biological, chemical, and radiological (NBCR) acts of terrorism as covered perils eligible for federal reinsurance, with no change to the triggering threshold. However, significant changes to other portions of the bill would be phased in over time.

Exact timing of further House action remains uncertain, but the Senate vote is an encouraging development as there are now formal versions of a TRIA reauthorization bill in both houses of Congress. Once the House approves its version, lawmakers from both chambers will address the differences between the two bills and vote on a compromise. If approved, the bill will go to President Barack Obama for his signature.