Insurance Representatives - How Does Yours Measure Up?



Insurance representatives can be some of the most important people you'll ever work with. They will assist you secure your property, your possessions and your financial resources. The work of an insurance representative has the possible to conserve you from monetary mess up.

You could go through your whole lifetime and not need the services of an attorney. You might pass away and live and not have to use an accountant. You cannot live in "the real world" without insurance agents.

But keep in mind ... it's YOUR obligation to find out which protections are right for you.

Have you ever heard a story from a buddy or relative who filed an insurance claim, only to discover that the coverage their agent guaranteed was not there? I hear those stories ALL THE TIME, and at the WORST POSSIBLE TIME ... AT DECLARES TIME!

I began my insurance career as an agent in 1973. I kept my agent licenses active up until 1992 when I became an insurance adjuster. During that period of time, I sold nearly every kind of insurance you can possibly imagine.

The finest representative is a person who has spend time studying insurance, not a person who is an expert in sales. The largest percentage of insurance representatives of all types are sales individuals, not insurance specialists.

There are a great deal of institution of higher learnings that provide degrees in insurance today. In our location, the University of Georgia provides degrees in Danger Management and Insurance. It's a pretty well-respected program.

Agents can also end up being specialists in insurance by going through continuing education, such as the Certified Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) education program. Life insurance agents can achieve the Licensed Life Underwriter (CLU) professional classification. There are other designations offered to agents, but those two are the most widely accepted curricula.

Representatives in a lot of states likewise need to complete a state-required number of Postgraduate work hours each year in order to preserve their insurance licenses. If they don't complete the hours, the state cancels their licenses.

A representative has a responsibility to you, called the "fiduciary responsibility." That indicates that he should keep your financial well-being first in his priorities. If an agent offers you an insurance policy because it has a greater commission than another policy, he has actually breached his fiduciary task to you.

Agents generally bring a type of liability insurance called "Mistakes and Omissions" liability insurance. Omssions and errors (E&O) is the insurance that covers the representative's company, or the representative individually, in the occasion that a client holds the agent accountable for a service he provided, or failed to supply, that did not have actually the expected or guaranteed results.

1. loss of client information. The representative just loses your file, physically or electronically.

2. system or software failure. Computer at the agent's office crashes and all information is lost.

3. irresponsible oversell. The representative offers you coverage you don't need, or offers you protection limitations higher than needed.

4. claims of non-performance. This is a broad classification however requires to be. This could include charges that an agent did not offer the correct policy, or the correct quantity of coverage.

The number 4 example above is the most widespread and most hazardous for agents. Here's why.

People today have multiple insurance direct exposures, like:

automobile physical damage

car liability

uninsured or underinsured motorists direct exposures

property owner physical damage

property owner liability

excess liability

businessowner physical damage

businessowner liability

home-based companies

life insurance needs

medical insurance requires

disability insurance requires

Any one of the exposures noted above can effect any of the others. They are elaborately woven together in each of our lives.

Any agent doing business in the modern-day world need to do an insurance analysis of any possibility's present insurance and his future insurance requirements. To fail to do so is an invitation for a claim.

Exactly what does this mean to you?

First: If your representative makes guarantees to you about coverage, and your claim gets rejected, you can make a claim versus the agent's Errors and Omissions Liability policy. You may have to get a lawyer involved, but that just increases the possibility that your rejected claim will make money.

Next: In my never-to-be-humble viewpoint, ALL representatives offering ANY kind of insurance must perform a Insurance Needs Analysis for the possibility PRIOR to selling the policy. In addition, I believe that a representative needs to thoroughly discuss the findings of the Insurance Needs Analysis to the prospect PRIOR to offering the policy.

The policyholder has a complete description of the policy he's purchasing and its relationship to all his other insurance. The representative offers the right coverage, and substantially decreases the danger of a lawsuit or claim versus his E&O coverage for offering the incorrect protection.

Here's exactly what an insurance analysis procedure must appear like.

1. Personal Information Collection: get as much Insurance Agent Lexington SC info about the insured and his relative as possible.

2. Get Copies of Existing Policies: the agent should really read the existing policies.

3. Analyze Insurance Requirements: figure out the appropriate protections needed and the correct policy limitations.

4. Recommendations: exactly what should be acquired and rates.

5. Application and Sign-off Analysis: complete the application and have the insured validate the analysis type.

6. Deliver the Policy: An agent must provide the policy face to face and explain it again, not just send you a copy in the mail.

Even after all of the training and education that any insurance agent obtains, the agent is still not an expert in how to manage an insurance claim. For most representatives, discovering the claims procedure would be a waste of their time, considering that many representatives are not licensed to manage claims.

Sure ... some agents will be offered a little claims settlement authority by the business they work for. Some representatives will have the ability to settle claims approximately about $5,000.00, and then only in the home side of the claim ... such as a little water loss or a theft. However, for the most part, the insurer concentrates claims managing with the claims employees and independent claims adjusters.

The most crucial techniques you must take from this article are:

1. Interview EVERY insurance representative to learn their level of expertise. Only do business with the most certified, educated and experienced agents. Let the inexperienced representatives practice on individuals who don't care about protecting themselves the proper ways.

2. Do not always chase after the most affordable premium. You get exactly what you pay for. You 'd be much better served to pay a greater premium if a highly certified agent looks after you. You do not drive the least expensive car you can find, do you?

3. Never be hesitant to call the Department of Insurance of your state if you have issues with your agent. Agents are controlled for a factor.


Representatives typically bring a type of liability insurance called "Mistakes and Omissions" liability insurance. Omssions and errors (E&O) is the insurance that covers the representative's business, or the agent individually, in the occasion that a customer holds the representative accountable for a service he supplied, or stopped working to offer, that did not have the expected or guaranteed results. Next: In my never-to-be-humble opinion, ALL agents offering ANY kind of insurance need to carry out a Insurance Needs Analysis for the possibility PRIOR to offering the policy. Even after all of the training and education that any insurance representative gets, the agent is still not an expert in how to deal with an insurance claim. For many agents, finding out the claims procedure would be a waste of their time, since many representatives are not licensed to handle claims.

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