Top 5 Questions to Consider When Evaluating Your Insurance
Published Tuesday, July 25, 2017
- What is the financial strength of your carrier? There are five rating agencies that rank a carrier’s financial stability, which is an indicator of its ability to pay claims. Check out "How to Assess the Financial Strength of Insurance Company" for more information.
- What is the claim-paying reputation of your carrier? To find this out, check for its ranking among J.D. Powers or Consumer Reports. Be careful of just believing the very first search you find on Google—make sure it’s a reputable source.
- Are you with a captive agent, an independent agent, or no agent (direct writer)? There are differences in what each can offer you. Check out our article explaining the differences of each.
- Is your carrier a national or a regional? A national carrier offers insurance in all 50 states. This can be important if you own a business that operates in various states and is expanding. You need a carrier who can write insurance in the states your business operates. On the other hand, a regional carrier operates in select states, ranging from just a few to 30 or 40. Regional carriers are often seen as more nimble and competitive because they operate in select states. National carriers can be burdened by disasters in states (hurricanes in Florida) that may end up affecting you in Ohio as they raise rates to offset their losses.
- What is the expertise of your agent? How do you know that your agent knows what he’s talking about? Certainly, experience in the business can be an indicator. A better indicator is the agent’s pursuit of insurance designations. These designations, often indicated as a jumble of letters after the agent’s name, tell you that he’s completed advanced training in insurance. Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC), Certified Risk Manager (CRM), and Certified Personal Risk Manager (CPRM) are just a few.