Special Committee on Personal Insurance for Members

Gary W. Lonergan, chair

The chief function of the Personal Insurance for Members Committee is to provide oversight of the VSB endorsed health, term life, and disability income insurance plans.  The Virginia State Bar has endorsed these plans for more than fifty years.  With the help of the Broker-Administrator, the Virginia State Bar Members’ Insurance Center, the committee monitors the plans and the details of coverage offered. The work of the committee and the administrator relieves attorneys of the time and expense of finding insurance products on their own.

The most popular component of the VSB insurance program is health insurance with Anthem. The enrollment of VSB members, staff of VSB members, and family of VSB members approximates 5,700.  Thanks to the endorsement by the VSB, participants receive “Value Added Benefits,” or extra benefits at no extra cost, from Anthem. Another important feature of this VSB health insurance program is the ability to offer “sole proprietor” group coverage. An exception has been made for the VSB and several other professional associations. Ordinarily a minimum of two employees is required for group health insurance.

Our endorsed Broker-Administrator works closely with individual lawyers and law firms to select health insurance. The cost of health insurance continues to be an important budget item for every law firm. In 2011 the average health insurance renewal increase for those individuals in the VSB/Anthem program was approximately 4%. This is far less than the 12-15 % average renewal increase which law firms have experienced in the past 5-10 years. 

Approximately 650 people are covered by the VSB Group Term Life Plan and about 225 individuals participate in the Group Disability Income Plan. The committee is pleased to report that the rates for both of these plans did not increase this past year. In fact, during the past 21 years VSB members have not seen an increase in either plan.  In addition, they have been afforded several rate reductions.

Information about these VSB-endorsed insurance plans can be found at www.vsbmic.com.

As committee chair, I would like to express my appreciation to Susan Stoneman, who is the vice chair of the committee, Raymond B. Benzinger, Franklin R. Blatt, Pamela Conner Gavin, Ann Winskie Hill, M. Janet Palmer, Daniel Leigh Rosenthal, and Carol Joy Schrier-Polak, for their participation and commitment to the work of the committee. Finally, I would also like to thank VSB Deputy Executive Director Mary Yancey Spencer for her advice and assistance to the committee.

Updated: Aug 15, 2012