By Tracy Durham, Associate Account Executive
Agencies may choose where to market their accounts based on their own philosophy and the clients’ desires. In dealing with a specialized market, like environmental, agents often choose to work with a specialty broker to determine the best fit for their business. If an agent is not experienced in these types of risks, they may not be able to inform the client about possible differences in the products offered. It is helpful to work with a partner who can guide you through these types of specialized products.
Things to consider when choosing a market for your client include the financial stability of the carrier and rating. Many contracts or agreements require an A-rated or better carrier to meet their guidelines. It’s important to be sure the carrier meets your insured’s contractual obligations and has the financial ability to be there in the future when claims typically come due.
In addition to financial stability, be aware that not all coverage forms are the same. There can be differences built into a policy form or modifications using endorsements that serve to distinguish one policy from another. It’s important to be clear on what a policy does and does not address. As you know, policy language can be complicated. Not all exclusions are necessarily found under the exclusion section and defined terms may add or delete coverage. When choosing the best coverage for your insured, policy language can make a substantial difference in the coverage.
It’s also crucial to understand the strengths and weaknesses of different carriers. There may be many markets out there that can provide a Contractors Pollution Policy and General Liability, however both the market appetite and focus can make a difference. You wouldn’t approach a market with high minimum premiums for a small general contractor, but that same market may be able to provide the best solution for a multi-million dollar contractor. In addition, many insurance carriers have a particular focus and experience with rating certain types of risks. For example, some focus heavily on transportation risks while others offer superior products for Site Pollution.
At Beacon Hill we endeavor to inform the agent about the products we offer and why they would be beneficial to your client. We have relationships with our markets that allow us to convey the agent’s goal to the carrier and the carrier’s abilities to the agent. Not all companies and products are built the same. Let us help you navigate your options when it comes to pollution risks.