NAPA -- The Doctors Company, the nation’s largest medical liability insurer, today announced a $21 million dividend for its member physicians and surgeons.

The company board of governors approved a 4 percent to 13 percent dividend this year, reducing premiums for eligible members in Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Maryland, Montana, Ohio, Oregon, Virginia, Washington and Wyoming. The dividend will vary depending on the loss experience of the individual state, according to the Napa-based insurer.

“Our strong dividend is made possible by better than expected physician claim experience,” said Richard Anderson, M.D., FACP, chairman and CEO, in a statement. “The dividend is just one of the ways in which we recognize, reward and thank our physicians for their continuing dedication and commitment to superior patient care.”

The Doctors Company also said eligible members of "select specialty societies" may also receive a dividend in addition to their  program benefits. Those societies include the American Academy of Otolaryngology--Head and Neck Surgery, the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, the American College of Physicians and the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.

This year marks the sixth consecutive dividend. Since 1976, the company has paid $228 million in dividends to members.

Dividend distributions will appear as premium credits effective with renewals beginning July 1.  The Doctors Company has 71,000 members, $4 billion in assets and an A rating from both A.M. Best Co. and Fitch Ratings.