FCAS, MAAA
Principal and Consulting Actuary

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Derek W. Freihaut

Derek Freihaut is a principal and consulting actuary with Pinnacle Actuarial Resources, in the Bloomington, Illinois, office. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and economics from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Terre Haute, Indiana. He has been in the property/casualty insurance industry since 2002.

Mr. Freihaut has considerable experience in assignments involving loss reserving, funding studies, loss cost projections, captive feasibility studies, risk transfer analyses, and personal and commercial lines ratemaking. He currently serves as chair on the AAA Committee on Property-Liability Financial Reporting (COPLFR).

Prior to joining Pinnacle, Mr. Freihaut was employed at a large insurance company where his responsibilities included personal and commercial lines pricing. His pricing duties included private passenger and commercial auto, commercial multi-peril and rental program lines of business.

Publications and Media

January 2021 APEX Webinar
Statements of Actuarial Opinion (SAOs) at Year-End 2020
Authored by Derek W. Freihaut and Aaron N. Hillebrandt.

November 2020 APEX Webinar
State of the Florida Homeowners Market
Authored by Derek W. Freihaut and Arthur R. Randolph II.

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Case Studies

Catastrophic Risks

Catastrophic Risks

Pinnacle was retained by an insurance company specializing in catastrophic risk to identify and test alternative sources of risk financing capacity including traditional reinsurance and catastrophe bonds. In order to complete the project, Pinnacle designed a dynamic financial model to determine the cost/benefit of alternate risk financing strategies.

Risk Transfer

Risk Transfer

Pinnacle can provide an evaluation of risk transfer for reinsurance contracts. Pinnacle’s experience includes the review of all types of traditional and non-traditional reinsurance treaties.

Pinnacle’s review of risk transfer in reinsurance contracts is consistent with both Statement of Statutory Principles No. 62, “Property and Casualty Reinsurance,” and Financial Accounting Board Statement No. 113, “Accounting and Reporting for Reinsurance of Short-Duration and Long-Duration Contracts.”

U S Domestic Statement of Actuarial Opinion

U S Domestic Statement of Actuarial Opinion

Domestic U.S. property/casualty insurers and risk retention groups are required to file an Annual Statement with state regulators each year by March 1. Part of that filing includes the submission of a formal Statement of Actuarial Opinion (SAO) by a qualified Appointed Actuary as to the reasonableness of held loss and loss adjustment expense reserves. The SAO must be one of five types:

  • Reasonable
  • Inadequate/Deficient
  • Excessive/Redundant
  • Qualified
  • No Opinion

In addition to the SAO, most jurisdictions require an Actuarial Opinion Summary (AOS) providing more detail on the Appointed Actuary’s specific findings by March 15. Lastly, a formal report narrative in support of the SAO and AOS is required to be available by May 1.

As the SAO is a compliance document, the primary audience is state regulators but the individual company must arrange for the service to be provided.

A recent SAO for one of our clients touched on many of the required disclosures:

  1. The adequacy of held reserves on a net basis were below the low end of our range of reasonable reserves until we took into account anticipated salvage and subrogation recoveries.
  2. The unearned premium reserves for long duration contracts were substantial and we conducted a review to determine they were adequate
  3. The Company held material loss and loss adjustment expense reserves for pools and associations. In order avoid having to issue a Qualified Opinion, we separately computed indicated reserves for two of the pools/associations, and obtained an SAO from the Appointed Actuary for the National Workers Compensation Reinsurance Pool.
  4. Reinsurance recoveries were in doubt for certain carriers as balance were sometimes overdue by more than 90 days. After reviewing the reinsurers’ A. M. Best ratings, we made the required disclosures about reinsurance collectability. 

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