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Last Post 12/13/2006 11:24 PM by  Tom Toll
Harmonizing Adjusters' Lives
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12/13/2006 10:36 PM

    The below is from a article on www.canadianunderwriter.ca website posted in July of this year with the same title. Sounds like a good plan would it work the US? Any thoughts?

    HARMONY ON THE HORIZON

    Heading into its annual general meeting last September, the CIAA developed a strategic plan. Not surprisingly, the key priority moving forward is the issue of harmonizing independent adjusters nationwide.

    "Harmonization with respect to independent adjuster licensing is the first and foremost of priorities that I have set in my sights for the coming year," Barber says, adding the benefits of harmonization are bountiful for regulators, adjusters, consumers and the insurance industry alike.

    Currently, individual provinces have different licensing requirements for independent adjusters. Barber believes this complicates and impedes claim response time, because adjusters and regulators alike have difficulty determining which license level an adjuster should fall under when working in different provincial jurisdictions - especially in provinces where step-licensing regimes exist. License harmonization will eradicate this problem, Barber says, because it will result in consistency across the jurisdictional board.

    "It (harmonization) also allows for faster response times to catastrophic events, because if you have the portability - the harmonized license in place - it's very easy for the regulator in the jurisdiction where the catastrophe has happened to place and license adjusters that are coming in to work," he says.

    From the regulators' perspective, Barber says, harmonization will lead to a better ability to trace licensed adjusters across jurisdictions, which will allow regulators to better control and monitor unlicensed adjusting activity.

    "We want to keep regulators attuned to the fact that there is unlicensed adjusting activity going on out there." Barber says. "Unlicensed adjusting hurts the general insurance industry and the public as a whole because, while from an insurer's standpoint there may be cost savings on the adjusting file, this may be overshadowed by an increased payout in the indemnity side of a file if there has not been a proper field investigation."

    Excess indemnity payouts resulting from the errors of unlicensed adjusters will ultimately hurt the work of licensed independent adjusters, Barber says. Such a scenario also causes policyholders to pay increased premiums.

    "We all participate in the insurance pool through our premium dollars," Barber says. "So from time to time, when an uninsured loss is paid mistakenly (by an unlicensed adjuster) or where there's an overpayment made on a covered loss, that affects the insurance pool as a whole."

     

    Click here to read the complete article.

    Tom Toll
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    12/13/2006 11:24 PM
    Harmonize, haven't done that since I sang bass in the Lindsey Brothers Gospel Quartet back in the stone age. That's an unusual way of describing what he want's to see done, good as any I guess. I think I would have used the term, standardized licensing for all states. It would probably work, but who is going to do the enforcing for all states. Is a test involved, experience level, or what. It still would not gurantee that an adjuster knows what he needs to know. Where is the manpower going to come from during a very large catastrophe. People don't just sit around waiting for something to happen so they can go to work, no guarantee of income. There would have to be a lot of thought put into a project of this nature, which would probably require Federal intervention for it to work, and we all know we don't need the inability of the Feds involved here. Something does need to be in place, however, to prevent those who do not know what they are doing from being involved in claims. Maybe the carriers will come up with a solution to the problem. The vendors don't seem to care, at least, some of them. The biggest problem of all are people that fabricate their knowledge, experience and training, in order to be placed on rosters for the catastrophes. I know I have sure run into some yahoo's in my years of adjusting.
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