ON THE LEVEL: VIEWS OF A STOREFRONT BROKER.

Author:Carbajal, Michael, Jr.
Position::[LOOKING BACK] INSURANCE ADVOCATE - 25 YEARS AGO
 
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A Valuable List

The New York Insurance Department's monthly bulletin contains a wealth of valuable information. The August, 1993 edition was particularly interesting. It contained a list of "hard to insure autos." This list is a very essential source of intelligence for the general buying public because it provides comparative costs of insurance for the various models. It is probable that in many instances buyers will steer clear of certain models when they understand what premiums will be when they go to buy insurance coverage. Every store front broker, particularly, knows what their customers go through when they learn what insurance is going to cost for the car they purchased. Certainly these people would have had second thoughts if they knew up front about the real price of the auto. The general public has the idea that a "car" is a "car" and that they all cost about the same to insure.

Anyone wishing a copy of this list can obtain it by requesting it from the Bureau of Research and Statistics, New York Insurance Department, 160 West Broadway, New York, N.Y. 10013. A self-addressed, stamped envelope would probably be a good idea.

I think that every producer in New York State who deals with automobile insurance should have a copy.

Now that my mentor and fellow broker, Momma Garcia, has an account with General Accident, she is milking me privy to GA's marketing philosophy. Although I may be critical of this carrier, it is still my favorite company.

GA is informing its agents to balance their book of business. Some have been told, in writing, that they "must" write a commercial line for every new homeowners policy and to go easy with automobile business. This is in contrast with the image they are projecting to the public.

I have always been at odds with Section 2610 of Regulation 64. "An insured must be given free choice as to where their vehicle is repaired. An insurance company cannot even recommend an auto repair facility."

Allstate has never directly violated this regulation but it has come close. Its claims offices don't specifically tell insureds where to have their cars repaired, but they point claimants in the right direction. They used to guarantee the work of the shops they suggested.

The good people at GA also knew they were being ripped off by auto body repair shops. They created the "Auto Care" program to make known to claimants and insureds the existence of preferred repair shops. This was a great idea and the field reps...

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