Posts Tagged ‘insurance industry’

FTC orders top insurers to release data

December 30, 2008

The nine top providers of home-owner insurance have been ordered to provide the agency with information about policy holders, premiums, claims data, use of credit history etc.  The companies are: State Farm, Allstate, Fire Insurance Exchange, Nationwide, The Travelers, United Services Automobile Association, Liberty Mutual, The Chubb Corporation and American Family Mutual.   The FTC says that these nine carriers comprise sixty percent of the homeowners insurance market.  The companies have until April 24th 2009 to provide this information to the FTC

This request intrigues me because I don’t think insurance carriers have been required by the FTC to provide this kind of information before.   Also, the data itself will be a fascinating glimpse at a mostly hidden market; what it charges, terms and conditions of insurance, the relationship between credit-based insurance scores and the insurance provided.  Finally, this information about the top nine homeowner insurance carriers isn’t that easy to come by and here it is presented in a government news release.  I am surprised that Hartford Financial, Century 21 and CNA aren’t in this top group.

New release

Lawsuit claims insurance broker getting kickbacks

November 25, 2008

Mesirow Insurance Brokers didn’t disclose its financial arrangement with an insurance carrier when it sold a policy to the plaintiff according to this lawsuit filed in Cook County court. 

The complaint is also a useful guide about the workings of the insurance industry, explaining the role of brokers and carriers and also how there is considerable pressure brought by the carriers on the brokers, (called “producers” under Illinois law) to sell their policies.  While the broker has a special obligation to the consumer or the company purchasing the policy to provide them the best coverage and price, the carriers are very interested in seeing that the brokers sell their policies.  The complaint also goes into some detail about the breakdown of revenue for the defendant, Mesirow Insurance Services.  Don’t neglect litigation as a valuable source for competitive intelligence.

Complaint courtesy Courthousenews


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