updated 2/18/2011 4:17:50 PM ET 2011-02-18T21:17:50

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa, Feb. 18, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The board of directors of United Fire & Casualty Company (Nasdaq:UFCS) declared a regular quarterly dividend on the common stock of 15 cents per share at its meeting today, Friday, February 18. This dividend will be payable on March 15, 2011, to stockholders of record as of March 1, 2011. Our company has paid dividends every quarter since March 1968.

About United Fire & Casualty Company

Founded in 1946, United Fire & Casualty Company is engaged in the business of writing property and casualty insurance and life insurance and selling annuities. Our company's net premiums written totaled $463.9 million through the year ended December 31, 2010, and our market capitalization was $584.7 million at December 31, 2010.

We are licensed as a property and casualty insurer in 43 states, plus the District of Columbia, and represented by approximately 800 independent agencies. The company's line of products consists of commercial insurance (including surety bonds) and personal insurance. Approximately 91 percent of property and casualty premiums written are commercial in nature. 

United Fire is rated A (Excellent) by A.M. Best Company. For the third consecutive year, United Fire was named a "Top 10 Ease of Doing Business Performer" for 2010 in Deep Customer Connections Inc.'s (DCC) eighth annual Ease of Doing Business (EDB) survey. The performance of more than 200 property and casualty carriers was assessed by 7,800 independent agents and brokers. They rated the importance of 11 key factors, ranging from underwriting responsiveness to handling claims promptly to employing effective, user-friendly technology. DCC specializes in helping property and casualty carriers achieve profitable growth by making it easy for their agents to work with them. DCC's EDB Index® is an industry benchmark of carriers' EDB performance. United Fire has also been named one of the most trustworthy publicly traded companies in America by Forbes and Audit Integrity. According to the stringent Audit Integrity standards for transparency and fair governance, less than five percent of the entire U.S. stock market qualifies for the list. 

Our subsidiary, United Life Insurance Company, is licensed in 28 states, represented by over 900 independent life agencies, and has been named to the Ward's 50 Life & Health Insurance Companies for five consecutive years (2006-2010).

For more information about United Fire, visit www.unitedfiregroup.com .

The United Fire & Casualty Company logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=7089

CONTACT:  Randy A. Ramlo, President/CEO 
          Dianne M. Lyons, Vice President/CFO
          319-399-5700

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