Terrorism Defined

In the United States, "Terrorism" is generally defined by the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (TRIPRA) which was extended in 2015. The 2015 extension of TRIA, similar to the previous iterations, requires that a specific set of criteria be met before an act of terror can be "certified." It is important to note thought that "terrorism" can include and be defined to include acts not covered under TRIPRA.

The term "act of terrorism" refers only to an act that is certified by the Treasury Secretary, in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Attorney General of the United States:

  • To be an act of terrorism.
  • To be a violent act or an act that is dangerous to human life, property or infrastructure.
  • To have resulted in damage within the United States, or outside of the United States in the case of U.S. air carriers, vessels and/or missions.
  • To have been committed by an individual or individuals as part of an effort to coerce the civilian population of the United States or to influence the policy or affect the conduct of the U.S. government by coercion.

It is important to note that TRIA further stipulates that no act may be certified as an act of terrorism if the act is committed as per of the course of war declared by Congress (Note that this provision does NOT apply to workers compensation).

Summary Provisions of the TRIPRA Act

Terrorism And Political Violence Brochure

Terrorism outside the United States

There is no standard definition or risk financing strategy to managing the risk of Terrorism. In many countries, governments have sought to define the risk and arrange a scope of coverage to meet the shortfall of capacity within the standard market. As the document attached below states – government backed schemes are worth considering, however in doing so, it is important to note scope of cover, limited offered and classification of certain acts of terrorism.

For expertise in helping you sort out the risk of terrorism in your country, feel free to reach out to Paul Bassett, Managing Director – Crisis Management in our London office. For Paul’s contact information, please refer to the “Meet our Specialists” section of this webpage.

State Terrorism Pools Flyer