What is Utah Risk Management Agency (URMA)?
Is a governmental entity created under the Utah Interlocal Cooperation Act. URMA provides comprehensive risk management services including risk assessment, analysis, consultation, mitigation, education, loss control, and claims and litigation management to its member municipalities and special districts. Additionally, URMA aids its members in purchasing excess and specialized insurance at group rates.
Why Was URMA Created?
In 1985, municipalities faced great difficulty finding affordable insurance because the commercial insurance market discontinued coverage for municipalities. Because of this crisis, a number of cities joined together to create URMA. The concept of URMA is simple – rather than paying premiums to buy insurance from the commercial market, municipalities contribute those funds into a joint-controlled fund. The money in URMA’s funds are then used to provide risk management services and claims and litigation services. URMA member’s contributions are stable and predictable – regardless of the commercial insurance market industry cycles.
How Does URMA differ from Traditional Commercial Insurance?
In some ways, URMA functions like a commercial insurance company. Members pay contributions to URMA and URMA provides the Joint Protection Program, which looks like an insurance policy, and pays claims and losses on the Members’ behalf. However, there are some important differences between URMA and a commercial insurance company.
- Member Control – URMA is 100% controlled by its Members. Each member appoints a representative to serve on URMA’s Board of Directors. All Joint Protection program coverage is approved by the Board of Directors.
- Risk Management First – URMA emphasizes risk management activities that improve communities to prevent losses. rather than insurance. URMA has an comprehensive inspection program to help members identify and mitigate risk and reduce financial loss.
- Member Accountability – Members are accountable for their own losses, therefore making risk management programs even more important.
- Personalized Service – URMA’s staff work closely with its Members at all levels. If an issue arises, the members know who to contact.
- URMA is Safe and Secure – To ensure that URMA is able to meet its responsibilities, URMA’s Board of Directors has always ensured that it is strong and financially sound. URMA takes a conservative approach to all fiscal matters. URMA Benefits from risk separation and segregation and through the pooling purchase of insurance policies. As a governmental entity, URMA has an annual audit and actuarial study.