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State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company – InsuranceNewsNet

State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company – InsuranceNewsNet #State #Farm #Mutual #Automobile #Insurance #Company #InsuranceNewsNet Welcome to Lopoid

2022 JUN 23 (NewsRx) — By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Insurance Daily News — State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company (Bloomington, Illinois, United States) has been issued patent number 11354750, according to news reporting originating out of Alexandria, Virginia, by NewsRx editors.

The patent’s inventors are Hayward, Gregory (Bloomington, IL, US), Isaacs, Craig Dean (Bloomington, IL, US), Roll, Leif Agerholm (Bloomington, IL, US), Webster, Eric (Bloomington, IL, US).

This patent was filed on April 20, 2020 and was published online on June 7, 2022.

From the background information supplied by the inventors, news correspondents obtained the following quote: “Individuals who seek insurance coverage and are sensitive to pricing and product features (e.g., coverage types and/or limits, deductibles, etc.) often expend considerable time and effort in finding insurance providers that best meet their needs. Conventionally, a consumer finds an insurance provider by way of an agent/broker, an aggregator, a comparison web site, general web browsing, etc. Once the consumer obtains an insurance policy from the desired provider, the consumer is typically tied to that provider, and to the rate and product features of the policy offered by the provider, until and unless he or she proactively shops around for a new provider offering a policy with a better rate and/or product features. For example, a consumer might decide to look into the offerings of other insurance providers when the consumer’s current policy is up for renewal. Thus, a consumer typically must either spend time and effort looking for better insurance offerings on a recurring basis (e.g., once every six months or annually), or simply renew his or her current policy regardless of whether that policy provides the best rate and/or product features.”

Supplementing the background information on this patent, NewsRx reporters also obtained the inventors’ summary information for this patent: “The present embodiments may, inter alia, automatically provide consumers with insurance policies that offer superior rates and/or product features on a continuing basis (e.g., across multiple policy terms), thereby reducing or eliminating the time and/or effort that consumers must spend researching the offerings of different insurance providers, as well as providing consumers with insurance policies that have lower cost and/or are more reflective of a risk score, characteristics, and/or preferences of the consumer as they change over time. The terms “consumer” and “customer” are utilized interchangeably herein, and generally refer to a person who is an insured party or a potential insured party. A consumer or customer may be represented by himself or herself, or may be represented by an agent (e.g., by a spouse, a person who has power of attorney for the consumer or customer, an administrative assistant, etc.).

“An intermediary entity may act on behalf of consumers and/or their agents to find policy rates and/or other features that best meet the consumers’ insurance requirements and/or preferences. Based upon consumer or customer characteristics and/or insurance preferences, each consumer or customer may be grouped with other insurance consumers or customers that have the same or similar characteristics and/or insurance preferences. The insurance consumer or customer groupings may be based upon demographic information (e.g., gender, birth date, etc.), information about the consumer’s property (e.g., a make, model and year of an automobile, etc.), claim and/or accident history of the consumer, risk (or lack thereof) characteristics of the group members, insurance claim expectations of the group members, insurance company ratings, the content and/or availability of telematics data obtained from vehicles and/or mobile devices of the group members, driving behavior, etc. The insurance consumer or customer groupings may be offered for sale to various insurance providers, such as through an online auction. Once a winning bid is accepted, any existing insurance policies of the consumer or customers affiliated with the auctioned group may (or may not) be updated to reflect new insurance policy terms or parameters (e.g., premiums, rates, etc.), discounts, refunds, etc. In some cases, new insurance policies may be provided to one or more consumers (such as when a consumer is an insurance applicant, or when an existing insurance policy is canceled and a new policy is issued in its stead). The consumer or customer groups may be updated (and/or new consumer or customer groups may be created) over time as new or more recent consumer or customer characteristic data and/or preference information is collected and/or updated. Then the insurance policies associated with the updated (or new) consumer or customer groups may be re-auctioned (or auctioned).

“In one aspect, a computer-implemented method for utilizing blockchain systems, methods, and/or techniques to provide insurance coverage to affinity groups includes receiving, via one or more network interfaces of an enforcement server, and by using an electronic or communications network, a plurality of bidding actions submitted by a plurality of bidding entities in response to a notification of an auction of an opportunity to provide insurance for an affinity group, where the auction is administered by the enforcement server via the electronic or communications network. The method may further include compiling, by the enforcement server, a plurality of transactions corresponding to the plurality of bidding actions into a block of transactions, which may, for example, correspond to a particular round of bidding. The method may also include updating, by the enforcement server, a plurality of copies of a distributed ledger with the block of transactions, where the plurality of copies of the distributed ledger are stored in a plurality of computing devices respectively corresponding to the plurality of bidding entities; identifying, based upon the updated distributed ledger, a winning bid for the auction corresponding to the affinity group based upon multiple updates to the distributed ledger, the multiple updates corresponding to multiple blocks of transactions; and providing, by the enforcement server to a particular bidding entity corresponding to the winning bid, data descriptive of members of the affinity group for use by the particular bidding entity in generating and/or modifying one or more insurance policies for the affinity group. The method may include additional, fewer, or alternate actions, including those discussed elsewhere herein.

“In another aspect, a system for utilizing blockchain systems, methods, and/or techniques to provide insurance coverage to affinity groups may include one or more persistent memories storing an auction database and one or more communication interfaces configured to communicate with remote devices via one or more networks. The system may further include a blockchain manager unit comprising computer-executable instructions that are stored on one or more non-transitory, computer-readable storage media and that, when executed by one or more processors, may cause the system to: compile a plurality of transactions into a block of transactions, the plurality of transactions corresponding to a plurality of bidding actions submitted by a plurality of bidding entities as part of an auction of an opportunity to provide insurance for an affinity group, and the plurality of bidding actions received at the system via the one or more communication interfaces; update, via the one or more communication interfaces, a plurality of copies of a distributed ledger with the block of transactions, where the plurality of copies of the distributed ledger are stored in a plurality of computing devices respectively corresponding to the plurality of bidding entities; identify, based upon the updated distributed ledger, a winning bid for the auction corresponding to the affinity group based upon multiple updates to the distributed ledger, the multiple updates corresponding to multiple blocks of transactions; store, in the auction database, an indication of the winning bid for the auction corresponding to the affinity group and an indication of a particular bidding entity that submitted the winning bid; and provide, to a computing device corresponding to the particular bidding entity that submitted the winning bid, data descriptive of members of the affinity group for use by the particular bidding entity in generating and/or modifying one or more insurance policies for the members of the affinity group. The system may include additional, fewer, or alternate components and/or elements, including those discussed elsewhere herein.

“Advantages will become more apparent to those skilled in the art from the following description of the preferred embodiments which have been shown and described by way of illustration. As will be realized, the present embodiments may be capable of other and different embodiments, and their details are capable of modification in various respects. Accordingly, the drawings and description are to be regarded as illustrative in nature and not as restrictive.”

The claims supplied by the inventors are:

“1. A computer system, comprising: one or more persistent memories storing an auction database; one or more communication interfaces configured to communicate with remote devices via one or more networks; and a blockchain manager unit comprising computer-executable instructions that are stored on one or more non-transitory, computer-readable storage media and that, when executed by one or more processors, cause the system to: compile a plurality of transactions into a block of transactions, the plurality of transactions corresponding to a plurality of bidding actions submitted by a plurality of bidding entities for an auction of an opportunity to provide insurance for an affinity group, and the plurality of bidding actions received at the system via the one or more communication interfaces; update, via the one or more communication interfaces, a plurality of copies of a distributed ledger with the block of transactions, the plurality of copies of the distributed ledger stored in a plurality of computing devices respectively corresponding to the plurality of bidding entities; identify a winning bid for the auction corresponding to the affinity group based upon multiple updates to the distributed ledger, the multiple updates corresponding to multiple blocks of transactions; store, in the auction database, an indication of the winning bid for the auction corresponding to the affinity group and an indication of a particular bidding entity that submitted the winning bid; and provide, to a computing device corresponding to the particular bidding entity that submitted the winning bid, data descriptive of group members of the affinity group for use by the particular bidding entity in generating one or more insurance policies for the affinity group.

“2. The computer system of claim 1, wherein each bidding action included in the plurality of bidding actions includes one of a respective bid amount or a respective indication of a no-bid.

“3. The computer system of claim 1, wherein the block of transactions includes respective indications of (i) a first transaction corresponding to a respective bidding action submitted by a first bidding entity in response to the auction corresponding to the affinity group, and (ii) a second transaction corresponding to a respective bidding action submitted by a second bidding entity in response to the auction corresponding to the affinity group.

“4. The computer system of claim 1, wherein the block of transactions includes respective indications of (i) a first transaction corresponding to a bidding action submitted by a specific bidding entity in response to the auction corresponding to the affinity group, and (ii) a second transaction corresponding to a bidding action submitted by the specific bidding entity in response to another auction corresponding to another affinity group.

“5. The computer system of claim 1, wherein the block of transactions corresponds to a single round of bidding for the auction corresponding to the affinity group.

“6. The computer system of claim 1, wherein membership in the affinity group is pre-defined by a third-party.

“7. The computer system of claim 1, wherein the affinity group excludes people.

“8. The computer system of claim 1, wherein: the block of transactions is a first block of transactions; the auction database stores one or more other blocks of transactions; and the blockchain manager unit further causes the system to chain first block of transactions to the one or more other blocks of transactions and store the chained blocks of transactions in the auction database.

“9. The computer system of claim 1, wherein the data descriptive of the group members of the affinity group is securely transferred, via the one or more communications interfaces, to a computing device corresponding to the particular bidding entity that submitted the winning bid.

“10. The computer system of claim 1, wherein the blockchain manager unit is included in an enforcement server, and the enforcement server further comprises a management interface unit configured to control aspects of at least one of the distributed ledger or the blockchain manager.

“11. The computer system of claim 1, wherein the blockchain manager unit is included in an enforcement server, and at least one of the one or more validation entities is included in the enforcement server.

“12. The computer system of claim 1, wherein the blockchain manager unit is coupled to a public interface configured to allow read-only access to at least some of the information stored in the auction database.

“13. The computer system of claim 1, wherein a set of bidding entities to which the auction of the opportunity to provide insurance for the affinity group is offered is determined based upon one or more characteristics shared by group members of the affinity group, and wherein the plurality of bidding entities is included in the set of bidding entities.”

For the URL and additional information on this patent, see: Hayward, Gregory. Blockchain systems and methods for providing insurance coverage to affinity groups. U.S. Patent Number 11354750, filed April 20, 2020, and published online on June 7, 2022. Patent URL: http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=%2Fnetahtml%2FPTO%2Fsrchnum.htm&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=11354750.PN.&OS=PN/11354750RS=PN/11354750

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