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Dec 2, 2015

Year in Review: Property & Casualty

2015 was another busy year for the Property & Casualty community, thanks to the many dedicated P&C member volunteers who achieved many significant milestones. Here are some of the highlights:

Standards
The 2015 Spring and Fall cycles were marked by continued activity in standards maintenance requests. The year saw a total of 105 MRs accepted by voters, illustrating that the ACORD P&C standards remain highly relevant as the P&C industry’s business needs for data exchange continue to evolve and expand.

Working Groups
Changes to the standards are facilitated by P&C Working Groups, which examine and review all maintenance requests and work with MR authors to ensure business needs are met through the implementation of the most appropriate technical solutions. The P&C Program supported the following working groups during 2015:

AL3 Transaction Specifications

  • XML Transaction Specifications
  • P&C Forms
  • P&C Program Working Group (PWG)
  • Coverage Implementation
  • Certificate Forms
  • XML 2.0
  • Specialty Lines

Well over 100 working group conference calls, 60 to 90 minutes in duration, were conducted during 2015. Newly added this year was the Specialty Lines working group, which focused on the cyber line of business. Attending meetings, reviewing minutes and completing homework represent a significant contribution of time and effort by P&C working group participants. It is through these invaluable contributions that the P&C standards continue to improve. 

Deliverables
In addition to the twice-yearly updates to the AL3 and XML messaging standards, numerous P&C forms were improved and republished to better meet the industry’s evolving business needs. Other important deliverables generated during the past year include:

  • New XML transaction specifications:
    • Commercial Inland Marine Policy Rate
    • Commercial Package Policy Rate
    • Commercial Property Policy Rate
    • Workers Comp Policy Quote
  • AL3 implementation guides and transaction specification updates:
    • Personal & Business Automobile State Issues (Implementation Guide 210)
    • Personal Lines Additional Residences (Implementation Guide 212)
    • Coverage Implementation Specifications (Implementation Guide 240)
    • AL3 Hierarchies Standard 234
  • A new P&C Coverage Code listing was published, combining all of the coverages contained in the AL3 and XML standards in a single spreadsheet
  • ACORD Certified Expert Boot Camps and Continuing Education webinars were conducted in both the Spring and Fall 2015 cycles

Innovation
Finally, some noteworthy, innovative P&C program topics from 2015 include:

XML 2.0 – The working group advanced significantly under the guidance of the new chair, Jamie Steward (Agencyport). Mechanisms to support innovative extensibility in a standard way were introduced, line-of-business messages structures were made more consistent, and maintaining backward compatibility was in focus. XML 2.0 is scheduled to replace XML 1.30 during the Spring 2016 cycle.

  • JSON and RESTful APIs received new attention, and will be a focus of discussions in 2016.
  • The Coverage Implementation working group began work on a "coverage matrix" that combines all coverages (and supporting data) from both the AL3 and XML standards.
  • The concept of XML Policy Download was introduced during an ACORD2015 session, and this topic will continue to be a topic of discussion through 2016.