01
May
2002

Trust Me, Insurance Companies are Fiduciaries

Policyholder Advisor & Alert

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PUBLISHED ON: May 1, 2002

The insurance business is a fiduciary business. You get access to other people’s money under conditions where in many cases the other people have very little knowledge or control
of where the money’s going.

Warren Buffett, 1992 Annual Report of Berkshire Hathaway, filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.

Insurance companies are fiduciaries. They fit the dictionary definitions and the scholarly interpretations of “fiduciary,” and they have characterized themselves as fiduciaries. In addition, many courts have concluded that insurance companies are fiduciaries.

With the mantle of the fiduciary comes responsibilities and duties. Abreach of a fiduciary obligation is a promise betrayed. Insurance companies therefore owe policyholders a high duty of care.