Insurance Agents - How Does Yours Measure Up?



Insurance agents can be a few of the most important people you'll ever work with. They will help you safeguard your home, your properties and your finances. The work of an insurance representative has the potential to conserve you from financial mess up.

You might go through your whole lifetime and not require the services of an attorney. You could die and live and not need to use an accounting professional. However you can't reside in "the real life" without insurance agents.

Keep in mind ... it's YOUR obligation to learn which coverages are ideal for you.

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

I began my insurance profession as an agent in 1973. I kept my representative licenses active till 1992 when I became an insurance adjuster. Throughout that duration of time, I sold almost every kind of insurance possible.

The finest representative is an individual who has invest time studying insurance, not an individual who is a professional in sales. The biggest portion of insurance representatives of all types are sales individuals, not insurance professionals.

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

Agents can also become experts in insurance by going through continuing education, such as the Certified Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) education program. Life insurance agents can achieve the Qualified Life Underwriter (CLU) expert classification. There are other classifications offered to agents, but those two are the most extensively accepted curricula.

Representatives in many states also have to finish a state-required variety of Postgraduate work hours each year in order to preserve their insurance licenses. The state cancels their licenses if they do not finish the hours.

A representative has a responsibility to you, called the "fiduciary duty." That means that he needs to keep your monetary well-being first in his priorities. He has breached his fiduciary duty to you if a representative offers you an insurance policy because it has a higher commission than another policy.

Agents usually bring a type of liability insurance called "Omissions and mistakes" liability insurance. Omssions and errors (E&O) is the insurance that covers the representative's company, or the representative separately, in the event that a customer holds the agent accountable for a service he offered, or failed to supply, that did not have the anticipated or guaranteed outcomes.

1. loss of customer data. The representative simply loses your file, physically or digitally.

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

3. irresponsible oversell. The agent offers you coverage you don't require, or sells you protection limits higher than needed.

4. claims of non-performance. This requires but is a broad classification to be. This could consist of charges that an agent did not offer the appropriate policy, or the correct amount of protection.

The number 4 example above is the most common and most dangerous for representatives. Here's why.

People today have numerous insurance exposures, like:

automobile physical damage

automobile liability

underinsured or uninsured motorists direct exposures

homeowner physical damage

property owner liability

excess liability

businessowner physical damage

businessowner liability

home-based businesses

life insurance needs

medical insurance needs

disability insurance needs

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

Any agent doing business in the modern world must do an insurance analysis of any prospect's present insurance and his future insurance requirements. To cannot do so is an invitation for a lawsuit.

Exactly what does this mean to you?

First: If your agent makes pledges to you about coverage, and your claim gets denied, you can make a claim versus the agent's Omissions and mistakes Liability policy. You might have to get an attorney included, however that just increases the chance that your rejected claim will get paid.

Next: In my never-to-be-humble viewpoint, ALL agents offering ANY kind of insurance need to perform a Insurance Requirements Analysis for the possibility PRIOR to offering the policy. In addition, I think that an agent must thoroughly explain the findings of the Insurance Requirements Analysis to the prospect PRIOR to offering the policy. As soon as the explanation is total, the agent needs to need the prospect to sign off on the policies that are offered, and validate the policies and coverages that are not sold. "Signing off" simply implies that the prospect specifies that the representative has actually explained all coverages, and he either accepts or declines any provided protection.

Both celebrations. the representative and the policyholder ... benefit in this transaction. The policyholder has a total description of the policy he's purchasing and its relationship to all his other insurance. The representative offers the ideal protection, and substantially decreases the risk of a lawsuit or claim against his E&O coverage for selling the wrong coverage.

Here's what an insurance analysis procedure should look like.

1. Personal Information Collection: get as much information about the insured and his family members as possible.

2. Get Copies of Existing Policies: the representative needs to in fact check out Insurance Agent Lexington SC the existing policies.

3. Examine Insurance Requirements: figure out the right protections required and the appropriate policy limits.

4. Recommendations: what should be purchased and rates.

5. Application and Sign-off Analysis: submit the application and have the insured approve the analysis kind.

6. Provide the Policy: An agent ought to deliver the policy in person and describe it once again, not simply send you a copy in the mail.

Even after all of the training and education that any insurance representative gets, the representative is still not a professional in how to deal with an insurance claim. For many representatives, finding out the claims process would be a waste of their time, because most representatives are not accredited to manage claims.

Sure ... some representatives will be offered a little claims settlement authority by the business they work for. Some representatives will be able to settle claims up to about $5,000.00, and then only in the residential or commercial property side of the claim ... such as a small water loss or a theft. For the a lot of part, the insurance business focuses claims handling with the claims workers and independent claims adjusters.

The most essential methods you need to take from this post are:

Interview EVERY insurance representative to find out their level of expertise. Let the inexperienced agents practice on individuals who do not care about securing themselves the ideal ways.

2. Do not constantly chase the most affordable premium. You get exactly what you spend for. You 'd be much better served to pay a greater premium if an extremely qualified representative looks after you. You don't drive the most affordable car you can find, do you?

3. If you have issues with your representative, never be reluctant to call the Department of Insurance of your state. Representatives are regulated for a factor.


Agents generally bring a type of liability insurance called "Errors and Omissions" liability insurance. Omssions and mistakes (E&O) is the insurance that covers the representative's business, or the representative separately, in the occasion that a client holds the representative accountable for a service he supplied, or failed to provide, that did not have the expected or guaranteed outcomes. Next: In my never-to-be-humble viewpoint, ALL representatives offering ANY kind of insurance must perform a Insurance Needs Analysis for the prospect PRIOR to selling the policy. Even after all of the training and education that any insurance representative gets, the representative is still not a professional in how to deal with an insurance claim. For many agents, learning the claims procedure would be a waste of their time, considering that a lot of agents are not licensed to manage claims.

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