Monthly Archives: December 2016

Insurance Brokers

Did you know there are publications that have been created to serve the needs of every agent and broker? Insurance is a huge industry and trying to keep on top of all the latest news and regulations is a job in and of itself. One such magazine, American Agent and Broker, has a wonderful website located at http://www.agentandbroker.com. Check out this month’s issue, which features articles on how to build your insurance business with boat and yacht insurance. You can read about the upcoming highlights for April’s issue as well. In the UK you can access this site, http://www.insurancenewspapers.com for free insurance press public information.

Marketing yourself and deciding how to advertise your business can be a daunting task. There are so many avenues available to brokers. Insurance is something everyone needs from infant to ancient. Brokers need to be well versed in as many areas of insurance as they can. Life, auto, home, health and disability are just a few. How is a broker supposed to get the word out that he is in business? Everyone familiar with sales knows the phrase ‘circle of influence’ or your ‘warm market’. These terms refer to the people you know best, your friends, family and colleagues. Let them go to work for you with referrals and word of mouth advertising. Take the top ten from your list and offer gift certificates for every person they refer that you write a policy for. It’s a nice way to say thank you and show how much you appreciate their loyalty.

Check out other brokers and their websites, advertising efforts and community involvement. Take their best secrets and tweak them to fit you and your way of doing business. Don’t discount becoming involved with your community. When you are out there working for the common good the common good is coming to you for their insurance needs.

Try and think back to the first time you purchased insurance from a broker. You can make a niche for yourself by going after the newest drivers, homeowners and start up businesses. Share your wealth of knowledge with them and they will remain loyal customers for all their insurance requirements.

Insurance Basics For Small Businesses

Not having insurance is risky business. It’s an expense that many business owners deem unnecessary, but adequate insurance coverage in times of loss is invaluable. As a small business owner, only you can decide what type of insurance coverage is best for your business. Take stock of the physical and personal property that is essential, and protect your assets with a policy that matches your business’s needs.

Fire, theft, and other emergencies and cause costly interruption to your business activity. Protect your physical business assets with a Business Owner’s Policy or Property Insurance. Additionally, you may want to consider Worker’s Compensation in case employees are injured on the job-check your state’s laws regarding this type of insurance.

All business owners should consider General Liability Insurance in the case of injury to a person or to someone’s property that occurs at your place of business. Entrepreneurs who work in the service sector should also consider Professional Liability Insurance to protect themselves financially against claims of negligence, errors, omissions, or wrongful acts in the performance of their duties.

All business owners should invest in Health and Disability Insurance-unforeseen medical expenses and cause a serious financial burden. Additionally, entrepreneurs with partnerships and businesses that rely on a key employee should consider purchasing Keyman’s Insurance in case that employee becomes unable to work.

Whichever type of insurance coverage you choose be sure that the policy contains all the coverage your business needs.

You can cut down on insurance expenses by avoiding duplicate coverage. Also, use due diligence in evaluating different policies from different insurance providers. It’s essential to read the policy and understand it fully before buying and signing any insurance agreement, as the insurance provider can deny claims if certain conditions are not met on the part of the policy holder.

Insurance And Your Credit Report (Part II)

If I don’t know my score, and my score varies from company to company and day to day, how will I know if my credit is affecting my insurance purchases?

The FCRA requires an insurance company to tell you if they have taken an “adverse action” against you, in whole or in part, because of your credit report information. If your company tells you that you have been adversely affected, they must also tell you the name of the national credit bureau that supplied the information so that you can get a free copy of your credit report. FCRA defines “adverse action” to include “…a denial or cancellation of, an increase in any charge of, or a reduction or other adverse or unfavorable change in terms or coverage or amount of, any insurance existing or applied for, in connection with the underwriting of insurance…”

Examples of an “adverse action” include:

– giving the consumer a limited coverage form

– not giving the consumer the best rate

– not giving the consumer a discount, or

– giving the consumer a surcharge

In addition, most state laws require insurers to provide clear and specific reasons for any refusal to issue, cancellation or non-renewal of an insurance policy. A reason such as “bad credit score” may not be in compliance with most state laws. Insurance companies differ in how and when they notify consumers about an adverse action. For example, notification could come either verbally or in writing from either the agent or the insurance company, and notification could come at the first policy period or at each renewal. The best way to know for sure if your credit score is affecting your acceptance with an insurer for the best policy at the best rate is to ask.

How can I improve my credit score if I have been adversely affected?

First, you must find out what “factors” caused your credit score to decline. The agent or company should be able to tell you the top “reason codes” (factors) that resulted in your score. In addition, you must find out what weighted number each of these factors is given to fully understand how your credit score may be improved. Insurers and credit scoring model developers suggest the following ways to improve your credit:

Don’t try to “quick fix”‘ your credit overnight or you could end up hurting your score.

Instead, understand that the most important factors generally are: late payments, amounts owed, new credit applications, types of credit, collections, charge-offs, and negative items such as bankruptcies, liens and judgments.

Create a plan that will improve your credit over time. Pay your bills on time (pay at least the minimum balance due, on time, every month). Keep credit balances low, especially on revolving debt like credit cards.

Apply for new credit accounts sparingly.

Keep at it. Your snapshot will improve over time if you make changes now and continue to improve. If you show good credit behavior over time, your credit score may improve as a result.

What can I do if I suspect that my credit report contains inaccurate or erroneous information that is adversely affecting my credit score?

If your insurance company has taken an “adverse action” against you as a result of your credit, you’re entitled to a free copy of your credit report from the credit reporting bureau they used. However, since the three national credit reporting bureaus do not share information with each other, it is a good idea to obtain a copy of your credit report from each of them because each report may contain the same or different errors and correcting errors on one credit report may not fix the errors with the others. You may have to pay a nominal fee (probably less than $10 for each report). Under federal law, your are entitled to a free copy of your credit report if you have been denied credit or insurance, if you are on welfare, if you are unemployed or if you are a victim of identity theft.

If you find errors in your credit report, advise the credit bureau. In addition, you should immediately notify your insurance agent and company and ask if these errors will make a difference in your insurance purchase and whether the insurance company will defer using your credit information until the inaccurate or erroneous information is corrected.

Don’t wait until the matter is resolved by the credit bureau. Small errors may have little or no affect on your credit score, but significant errors could cause the insurance company to disregard the score and possibly reverse the adverse action.

The credit bureau will contact the reporting entity (bank, Credit Card Company, collection agency, court clerk, etc.) to verify the information. The bureau must investigate and respond to you within 30 days.

If the disputed information cannot be verified, or if the reporting entity agrees that the information is incorrect, the credit bureau must remove, complete, or update the information. Also at your request, the credit bureau must send a notice of the correction to any creditor that has checked your file in the past six months.

If the reporting entity verifies that the information is indeed correct, the credit bureau will not remove the information from or correct the information on your credit report. However, the FCRA permits you to file a 100-word statement explaining your side of the story, and the reporting bureau must include your statement with your credit information each time it’s sent out. Make sure your insurance company has a copy of your statement, and ask if they will take it into account.

Once the errors are removed or corrected, it’s a good idea to obtain a new copy of your credit report several months later to make sure the incorrect or erroneous information hasn’t been reported again.

Most consumer groups suggest that you get a copy of your credit report from all three credit bureaus once a year to make sure there are no errors or to correct them before they become big problems. The three national credit bureaus are:

Equifax

Experian

Trans Union

Where can I go for help with credit problems?

If you can’t resolve your credit problems alone, or need additional assistance, there are non-profit credit counseling organizations that may be able to assist you. In addition, non-profit counseling programs are sometimes operated by churches, universities, military bases, credit unions, and housing authorities. You can also check with a local bank or consumer protection office to see if they have a list of reputable, low-cost financial counseling services.

Some credit repair firms promise, for a fee, to get accurate information deleted from your credit file. Be wary of those entities because accurate information cannot be deleted from your credit record. You have the same access to credit reporting agencies that credit repair firms do and you are entitled to dispute credit report items for free.

Will a less than perfect credit score haunt me forever?

The best way to find out if and when your company will re-evaluate and re-tier or re-assign you is to ask. Some insurance companies look at your credit periodically and will place you in the appropriate company or rating tier based on your current information. If you were originally charged a higher rate because of your credit and you improve your credit over time, you may receive a lower rate the next time the company looks at your credit. Other insurance companies look at your credit only at the time you first apply for insurance. Even if you improve your credit history, the company will not take your improvement into account and you will continue in the higher-priced company or rating tier. Conversely, if you are already in the best priced company or rating tier, you would not be downgraded should your credit history deteriorate.

Where can I get more information?

Ask your insurance agent or company if they have educational material about their use of credit.

Search the Internet, but be sure the information you access deals specifically with use of credit by insurance companies.

Contact the Federal Trade Commission for information about the FCRA or their consumer brochures on credit.

Boost Speed of your Android with Clean King

The smartphone is the simplest form of communication source available today. It allows you to communicate with others via calls and chats. It offers you many other services as well like sending emails, clicking pictures, listening to music, running multiple useful apps and lot more. This form of communication source has definitely made the life of common man easy. Despite offering lot of services and features smartphone has some limitations too. Speed and performance issue is one such limitation of smartphones which virtually holds your work and causes due to various reasons.

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Insurance And Your Credit Report (Part I)

A growing number of personal auto and homeowners insurance companies have begun looking at consumer credit information to decide whether to issue or renew policies, or to decide what premiums to charge for those policies. This brochure is designed to help you understand, in general terms, how your credit information is being used for personal auto and homeowners insurance, and how it may affect your insurance purchases.

Is it legal for an insurance company to look at my credit information without my permission?

Yes. A federal law, the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), states that insurance companies have a “permissible purpose” to look at your credit information without your permission. Insurance companies must also comply with state insurance laws when using credit information in the underwriting and rating process.

Why are some insurance companies using credit information?

Some insurance companies believe there is a direct statistical relationship between financial stability and losses. They believe that as a group, consumers who show more financial responsibility have fewer and less costly losses, and therefore, should pay less for their insurance. Conversely, they believe that as a group, consumers who show less financial responsibility have more and costlier losses, and therefore, should pay more for their insurance.

Does using credit information discriminate against lower-income consumers?

Insurers that use credit and entities that have developed credit scoring models state that there is no difference in credit scores among different income levels because there are just as many financially responsible low-income consumers as there are financially responsible high-income consumers. In addition, those companies warrant that factors such as income, gender, marital status, religion, nationality, age, and location of property are not used in their credit scoring models. At the same time, these entities have not addressed factors that may appear neutral on their face but have a disparate impact on protected categories of consumers. For example, some scoring systems consider the source of credit that a consumer uses and consumers who rely on finance companies and other subprime lenders may receive lower credit scores. This may have a disproportionate impact on minorities.

What kind of credit information are insurance companies using?

Although some insurance companies still look at your actual credit report, most companies that use credit information are using a “credit score.” A credit score is a snapshot of your credit at one point in time. Insurance companies and entities that have developed credit scoring models use several factors to determine credit scores. Each factor is assigned a weighted number that, when applied to your specific credit information and added together, equals your final three-digit score ranging from 0-999, depending on the insurance company and the credit scoring model used. Generally, the higher the number, the more financially responsible the consumer is. Following is a list of the more common factors used:

– Major negative items bankruptcy, collections, foreclosures, liens, charge-offs, etc.

– Past payment history number and frequency of late payments; days elapsed between due date and late payment date.

– Length of credit history amount of time you’ve been in the credit system.

– Home ownership whether you own or rent.

– Inquiries for credit number of times you’ve recently applied for new accounts, including mortgage loans, utility accounts, credit card accounts, etc.

– Number of credit lines open number of major credit cards, department store credit cards, etc. that you’ve actually opened.

– Type of credit in use major credit cards, store credit cards, finance company loans, etc.

– Outstanding debt how much you owe compared to how much credit is available

How are insurance companies using credit?

Companies are using credit in two ways:

Underwriting – deciding whether to issue you a new policy or to renew your existing policy. Some state laws prohibit insurers from refusing to issue you a new policy or from non-renewing your existing policy based solely on information obtained from your credit report. In addition, some state laws prohibit insurance companies from using your credit information as the sole factor in accepting you and placing you into a specific company within their group of companies.

Rating – deciding what price to charge you for your insurance, either by placing you into a specific rating “tier” or level, or by placing you into a specific company within their group of companies. Some insurers use credit information along with other more traditional rating factors such as motor vehicle records and claims history. Where permitted by state law, some insurers may use credit alone to determine your rate.

How do I know if an insurance company is looking at my credit?

Some agents and companies will ask for your social security to obtain “consumer information,” “background information,” or an “insurance bureau/credit score.” When an application for insurance is submitted, consumers should ask their insurance agent or company about whether and how credit information will be used in the underwriting and rating process.

Will having no credit history affect my insurance purchase?

Sometimes an insurer will find “no hits,” or “no score,” which means they cannot find a meaningful credit history for you. This lack of credit information could occur: if you’re young and haven’t yet established a credit history; if you don’t believe in using credit and have always paid in cash; or if you have recently become widowed or single and all of your previous credit information was in your spouse’s name. If an insurance company finds no meaningful credit information for you, you may pay a higher rate for insurance, if such rate increase is permitted by state law. Although many companies won’t charge you their highest rate, neither will they give you their best rate. If you know that you have an established credit history, check with your agent or insurance company to make sure they are using your correct social security number, birth date, or other information to find your records.

What do insurance companies consider a good credit score?

A “good” score varies among companies. A good score is a number that matches the level of risk your insurance company is willing to accept for a particular premium. For one company, a 750 score may qualify you for their best (lowest) rate. For another company, the same 750 may not be high enough to qualify you for their best (lowest) rate.

Must an agent or company tell me what my credit score is?

No. In fact, the agent or company underwriter might not even know your actual credit score. Instead, the credit scoring company or model they use may just advise that your score qualifies you for a particular tier or company within the group. However, even if you know your credit score, it may not be useful to you. Since a score is just a snapshot of your credit information on a particular day, your score could change at any time there is a change in your credit activity or a creditor’s report to a credit bureau. In addition, insurance companies use different credit scoring models, so your score could vary from one insurer to another. For example, one company may use three scoring factors (bankruptcies, judgments, and liens) and assign certain weights/points to each. Another company may use those same three factors, but assign them different weights/points, and use two additional factors such as payment history and outstanding debt. Lastly, since the national credit bureaus don’t share information with one another, a score may change depending on which of the three national credit bureaus report the information that goes into the scoring model.

Insurance and warranties for mobility products.

It is now possible to take a warranty (extended) and accidental damage insurance to cover home mobility products which include adjustable beds, riser recliner chairs and stair lifts. Therefore in the event of an accidental damage including mechanical or electrical breakdown, protection will be offered.

Such warranties and insurance can be taken out on both new and used products. However before taking out a warranty it is worth considering that a new product may be covered by the manufacturer’s warranty.

Periods usually cover 12, 24, 36 or 48 months for new products. For used products cover can usually be taken three months after the product have been purchased and will last for 9 months. This is usually to ensure that used products are reliable before insurance and warranties commence. Upon renewal a 12 month period can be taken.

There are two main types of warranties available these are:

On Site (OS) Warranty

This warranty is the most convenience where repairs to the mobility product are carried out at you home. There may be exceptional cases were the product cannot be repaired at the home and will need to be taken away for full repairs.

Return to Base (RTB) Warranty

This warranty will result in the product being taken to a workshop for repairs. For new product be wary of this warranty as often you may be requested to return the product in it original packaging which may not always be possible.

Before taking any insurance or warranty cover be sure to read all small print, and ask any questions you may have, especially with reference to the type of warranty being offered.

It is also possible to take insurance to cover mobility scooters. There are two aspects of this type of insurance. First, to cover the scooter itself for damage, secondly to cover injuries or damage to a third party or the third parties property.

Adamjlss New Rising Music Star

UK Based artist, Adamjlss is one of the hottest unsigned singer/songwriter and performer that continues to keep pushing and producing remarkable music for R&B /soul, pop/dance and hip hop’s music goers and fans across the world. The UK self-made independent rising music star Adamjlss has taken further step closer to international stardom with his music/single, dubbed “A BIT MORE.”  This incredible single is making a huge buzz that is being heard and adored around the world by R&B and many music lovers and fans.  Adamjlss has delivered to his fans another dance/club and Cool vibe Track that will have the fans swept off their feet dancing. Adamjlss’s hot  single, “A BIT MORE,” is clearly dance-like/love-like and amazing song just in time for winter and upcoming year 2017 that’s getting heard and requested by urban music lovers, and played by Club DJS, Radios in the UK, Europe and fans in the U.S. and worldwide. A must listen and buy for music goers. “A BIT MORE” is now available at all major online retail outlets Such as (Google Play).

Adamjlss story of music began since he was a teen, he has addictively insane talent for singing and writing music.  Adamjlss is a musician and singer- songwriter who lives in Liverpool, United Kingdom. Adamjlss who delves in genres such as Urban, R&B, Dance, Pop, Hip hop among others, started doing music only recently during the last year. Though he always had a deep passion for the art he never really took it seriously up until now. He pursues his musical ambition by writing and releasing as much music as he can. Many of his songs can be found on YouTube  including “A Bit More” Prod. By OGE BEATS and “Blindfolded”

    Adamjlss’ take on neon R&B, with “A Bit More Prod. By OGE BEATS, celebrates the slinky nights of   the soul, coming close to distilling that glow stick club juice into something strictly intoxicating. Adamjlss’ tracks feel universal in its depictions of desire — his sexiness is satiable, his desires multifaceted, and the way he chooses to explore them deliberately diverse. The splendid qualities of his artistry resonate strongly on these tracks, as he quietly commands undivided

Attention

It is refreshing to hear an R&B, urban edged infusion that thrives, thanks to a self-aware confidence, and knowing that not trying so damn hard to compel the audience will accomplish the very goal so many others seek yet don’t reach. “A Bit More” and “Blindfolded” are meticulously crafted and the passion that went into its creation is heard on every note that Adamjlss hits, and each song has its own individual nuances that solidifies their diversity.

When a creative soul is given the freedom to find his zone, the result is that the body of work created will almost always accurately present the artist – in this case Adamjlss – as a highly respected artist who should be considered a leader in a genre where too many are trying to emulate the success of others, rather than channel a unique aesthetic that is special to their own skill-set.

On “Blindfolded”, the Liverpudlian suavely proves the power of euphemistic propositions: sex is treated with a sort of debonair elegance, always insinuated but never explicitly invoked.  The instrumental is a gorgeous amalgamation of echoing snaps, crackling static, warm synths, and slow gyrating bass, perfectly accompanying Adamjlss’ swaggering delivery and warbling falsetto. Much like his lyrics and voice, the music itself invokes an air of wonder.

Everything that makes R&B so special at this point in the genre’s evolution can be found in Adamjlss’ tracks. Much like The Weeknd, Maxwell and Frank Ocean, Adamjlss brings his own personal twist to the genre. Clearly he is very much aware of what he is allowing himself to do, and talented enough in order to orchestrate so brilliantly, each crucial step on his way to finding a way towards the R&B throne.

Social Link

Website             https://adamjlssmusic.blogspot.co.uk/

Website             http://www.adamjlss.com/

Twitter              https://twitter.com/AdamJlss

Facebook          https://www.facebook.com/Adamjlss1

Youtube            https://www.youtube.com/c/Adamjlss1

Soundcloud      https://soundcloud.com/adamjlss

Linkedin          https://uk.linkedin.com/in/adamjlss

Insurance And Ethics

Insurance contracts are often seen as a form of gambling. That is because they appear as a type of wager that takes place over the lifetime of the policy. Basically the insurance company is willing to bet that you and your property will not suffer the loss insured against. In exchange for making this bet, and taking on the risk, the receive your premium. If they win the bet, they keep the premium, if they lose, they make the payout. In this sense, they are often compared to a type of long term financial casino.

The difference between your premium amount, and the amount the insurance company will have to pay out if the loss occurs, is simply the odds the insurance company is getting for taking on the bet. It’s just like going to the horse races and betting on a horse that pays out 10 to 1.

This view of insurance has led to a number of people and religious communities disapproving of insurance because of its similarities to gambling. Among those groups that avoid insurance are the Amish and Muslim communities. What these people do instead is create a system of what is known as social insurance. What this means is that if there is a disaster and someone suffers a heavy loss, then the whole community will step forward and help them to deal with their loss and rebuild. While this system is very simple, it has the potential to be just as effective a safety net as insurance. However, it requires that the community actually does step forward and help those who suffer from disasters. This means that it is more successful in small closed and closely knit communities than in large modern societies.

Social insurance systems therefore are not always effective. Often the community that is supposed to adopt it is not suitable. Also, in very large disasters the system can break down as a small community will not be able to rebuild itself completely without outside assistance. This is why larger modern insurance systems can be more robust. However, in extremely large disasters, modern insurance systems can also run into difficulties. This is witnessed by the fact that it is impossible to insure against certain risks such as floods and earthquakes. This is because the damage would be simply on too large a scale for the insurance companies to cope with.

There are other ways in which insurance doesn’t follow the gambling model. For instance insurance companies seek to reduce the risk of the loss occurring constantly, for instance by requiring the installation of fire alarms, or by reducing the loss if the insured against event does occur, for example by providing rehabilitation to accident victims. Therefore insurance is like a gamble in the reward and risk elements, but other elements are different.

Insurance Against Rising Mortgage Payments

There’s good news for those shocked by rising payments on interest-only and adjustable-rate mortgages. It’s possible an insurance product may help eliminate some of the stress.

Interest-only loans and adjustable-rate mortgages, made popular when interest rates dipped below 5 percent, made low monthly payments possible even when borrowers put little or no money down.

However, many homeowners are now seeing payment increases as low introductory rates increase and interest-only periods end.

Experts believe the increases are contributing to rising foreclosures-up 45 percent in January, according to foreclosure listing service RealtyTrac.

“One trillion dollars worth of mortgages will reset to new interest rates next year-we could be facing a major crisis,” said Bill Ruh, Government Affairs Director of the California-based Citrus Valley Association of Realtors. “Buyers may think they can only purchase a home using a short-term or fancy combo loan, but the reliable 30-year-fixed mortgage is an attainable and secure option.”

While many have tried to avoid it in the past, new types of private mortgage insurance (MI) offer that secure option, providing a lower monthly payment than many combo loans.

One type of mortgage insurance, called “single premium”, lets buyers borrow the full amount needed, with no added monthly fees because the one-time premium is financed within one loan. And if the value of the home appreciates enough to cancel the insurance within the first five years, buyers receive a partial refund. In today’s real estate environment, mortgage insurance sometimes cancels in as little as two to three years.

Compare the savings on a “single premium” loan to a “piggyback” mortgage on a $175,000 home purchased with a 5 percent down payment.

The single premium loan has a $1,076 monthly payment, while the piggyback is $1,142 per month. If the mortgage insurance were canceled after three years, the single premium loan holder would receive a one-time refund of $1,630.

Said Kevin Schneider of Genworth Financial, Inc., “With single premium products, monthly payments are among the lowest, and homeowners have peace of mind knowing that payments will not fluctuate.”

Insurance Accounting Software: How To Get The Best One

Insurance business has developed and prospered by leaps and bounds in the last few decades. This has not only made their transactions big but have also made them a little more complicated with new insurance policies being launched every day. There are specific business requirement for insurance companies. So, software engineers have produced a number of software for insurance companies.

Any good accounting software in this category packs some startling features that are almost always needed by the companies. These features are easy to use and work much like the manual of a healthcare practitioner’s manual accounting system.

The accounting programs include open item accounting, which is helpful in matching payments made to individual charges. This way one is always aware about what has been paid to whom and what still remains to be paid and to whom.

With these software one thing that always needs to be kept in mind is the customer service and support because most of the experts in this area are of the opinion that if the technical support is not at hand to deal with the question that arise when it is put to process large amounts of data, it is likely to create quite a bit of confusion. So, when you are going for an accounting software for insurance business, lay emphasis on the post-sale technical support available.

Ready technical support should be available online or on phone so that not much time is lost troubleshooting. You might have to shell out a little more for guarantee and technical support. Do not flinch from doing that because it will prove well worth it in due course of time. Getting software with lousy technical support would harm your business instead of smoothening the operations. So, be cautious.

Always keep in mind that insurance business is a data intensive business, which means that you need a software that is very accurate and does not lose on speed when processing heavy data. There are various software that can achieve both speed and accuracy. So, if you could not find one soon enough, look around some more. You need not settle for anything less than what you want.