The number of new contractor-controlled wrap-up insurance programs has probably pulled even with the number of new owner-controlled programs, Richard Resnick, senior vice president of Aon Construction Services Group, told an audience at the International Risk Management Institute's construction conference in San Diego Nov. 14.

Other speakers at other sessions joined in "debates" set up by IRMI over whether a contractor-controlled program (CCIP) was better than an owner-controlled one (OCIP).

Susan Staff, director of risk management at Zachry Holdings Inc., argued in favor of contractor control. "If you are jumping out of an airplane, you want to select and control and pack your own parachute," she said.

In traditionally insured projects, the various contractors embed in their bid price the cost of their own insurance.

Owner-controlled wrap-up plans have provided a way to get better coverage and limits and eliminate cross-liability lawsuits.

"The way we sold wrap-ups historically…was on savings," said Kathleen A. Creedon, owner of Wrap Strategies, an insurance consultant based in Auburn, Calif.

But now wrap-up programs are becoming more expensive. "The dynamics have changed and the saving is not as much," said Resnick, who was involved in wrap-ups long before joining Aon, the Chicago-based broker. "We're not seeing the bid credits we used to see."