INDEPENDENT INSURANCE AGENTS OF SOUTH DAKOTA
IIASD Fire Department Grant Awards for 2016
Message from Your 2017 IIASD President-Elect Young Agents – Changing Perceptions
Do you ever have those moments when you are visiting with an old friend, new colleague, or even a family member, and they ask what you do? The subsequent pause happens, and then, at least for me, I have internal dialogue. What do I say? “Risk Manager?….nope over their heads.” “Insurance producer?…notta, they are going to think I make something.” “Insurance agent…Oh Boy! Now they are going think about those that spend billions on advertising…Jake, Flo, Lizards, Good Hands, and Mayhem.” Then my usual response is blurted out, “I work in an insurance agency, and I enjoy helping people with their insurance needs.” Then yes…the proverbial gloss over, yawn, and can’t wait to end the conversation look happens. Relaying what we do can be challenge. Showing what we do is also tough considering we are basically helping with contracts. Now, take it a step further and try going into retention of employees both for service work and producing. Let’s be honest, the insurance world isn’t exactly flashy, but with some polish and new light that the IIASD Young Agents Committee can bring to your new people you need to be taking advantage of sending and supporting the YAC. I can honestly say, without a doubt, my commitment to the Independent Insurance Agent system would not be where it is today if it wasn’t for the support and urging of our agency to become involved. Involvement for me has created relationships with other agents that wouldn’t have happened. Involvement has provided opportunities for growth intellectually, professionally, and financially. Lastly, involvement in the IIASD Young Agents has fostered a commitment to our industry to make sure we are the finest option for consumers to choose us as their insurance choice for years to come. If you are an agency principal or owner, and you aren’t taking advantage of sending your new people to YAC events, you are truly missing out. By sending those people, you are showing a vested interest in their career and confirming that they have made the right choice. Make it “easy” for them to go. Offer to pick up the tab for travel. Create a support network within your office so nothing gets missed. Most importantly, provide genuine support and confidence that going to YAC events is worthwhile. We have great momentum in the YAC and your IIASD Board has committed the financial backing. The time is NOW to send your new agents for the betterment of their career, your agency, and the Independent Agency System.
Jesse Konold- President-Elect Key Agency Mobridge, SD
INDEPENDENT INSURANCE AGENTS OF SOUTH DAKOTA 2017 OFFICERS
Annette Conway Black Hills Agency Inc Rapid City, SD
PRESIDENT-ELECT Jesse Konold Key Insurance Inc. Mobridge, SD
IIABA STATE NATâ€™L DIRECTOR
Derrick Linn Leavitt Heartland Ins. Services Sturgis, SD Pat Tollefson Insurance Plus Aberdeen, SD
DISTRICT # 1
Janet Noteboom The Insurance Center Winner, SD
Josh Gilkerson Fischer Rounds & Assoc. Pierre, SD
Dan Maguire Black Hills Agency Inc Rapid City, SD
DISTRICT # 5
Janet Noteboom The Insurance Center Winner, SD
DISTRICT # 6
DISTRICT # 2
Mindy Huntington Fischer Rounds & Assoc. Watertown, SD
John Meyen Rosholt Insurance Agency Rosholt, SD
Rich Job HUB International Mountain States Limited Vermillion, SD
Derrick Linn Leavitt Heartland Ins. Services Sturgis, SD
DISTRICT # 3
DISTRICT # 4
DISTRICT # 7
DISTRICT # 8
Deana Taylor Agents of Insurance Rapid City, SD
Amy Olson-Miller McKinneyOlson Insurance Sioux Falls, SD
EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT Carolyn Hofer IIASD Fort Pierre, SD
The Executive Corner Carolyn Hofer, Exec VP
If you spend a lot of time watching, reading and listening to the media, you can’t help but lay awake at night wondering what is going on in this country! It is difficult to sift through all of the “soap opera news” to determine what is fact and what is “enhancing the truth”! It’s important to keep in mind that every generation has experienced its share of problems and don’t fall into the trap of living the negative and forgetting about the positives. With that said, you can’t just ignore the challenges we face – particularly in our industry. It may seem like a futile effort to try to make a difference but there are a lot of ways we can do that. Belonging to a group who represents your best interest is a great first step and staying informed about the issues that concern you is the second. When you join in with hundreds of others who share your concerns, your message has an impact. We haven’t had a lot of industry or small business issues on the State Legislative level this year but you can be assured that Jerry Diamond has been keeping his ear to the ground and is developing relationships with new legislators so we have their trust when issues do come up in the future. We definitely have challenges on the Federal level with the future of National Health Care, renewal of Farm Bill in 2018 and review of regulatory issues to name a few. Your IIASD Association has ongoing contact with our National Association’s Governmental Affairs team and they employ some of the best lobbyists on the Hill. With the new Washington Administration, they are working hard to preserve and build relationships so your voice will be heard when issues surface that affect your future…crop, healthcare, fiduciary regulation, etc. How can you make a difference? Stay informed and involved. Call us with your concerns. We don’t have a finger on the pulse of each and every issue so we need your input. Even though it may seem like South Dakota doesn’t carry a lot of clout in Washington, you can be assured that your State and National Association represents each and every member equally. One of the most effective ways you can assist, in addition to the above, is to support our efforts in Washington by donating to InsurPac. Click here to make your 2017 contribution today.
E&O EDGE – Megan Linn, E&O Administrator 5 E&O Loss Control Habits of Successful Agencies by Brian Butcher
Stephen Covey’s popular book, “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People,” has been a business and self-help goto for nearly three decades. In a similar vein, I contacted several agency risk managers, agency principals and Westport’s panel defense counsel and asked, “What practices and procedures best serve an insurance agency with respect to reducing or eliminating their errors & omissions exposures?” Here are the five behaviors and habits I encountered most frequently: Culture. Agency principals and management shape every corporate behavior by the type of culture they create and nourish. The agency principals I spoke with emphasized the importance of immediate and formalized training for new employees, highlighting behaviors that are particularly important to the agency. Continued employee training is also crucial in order to keep staff abreast of new developments and underscore appropriate risk management practices. One agency I spoke with holds weekly 30-minute seminars on a variety of topics and involves employees and managers in conducting them. Other successful agencies hold quarterly meetings with employees to review work plans and discuss various areas of concern and progress. Documentation. Any professional liability claims handler will affirm the importance of frequent and meaningful documentation when it comes to defending an E&O claim. The agencies I spoke with devote special attention to documenting important conversations with their clients via file notes, emails and letters. The application process is particularly important—a careful review of all initial and renewal applications for accurate information and necessary signatures significantly reduces E&O exposure. It’s equally important for agency personnel to check and double-check all correspondence—email, letters, file notes—before sending and recording them. A good test: Think about how the email or file note would look to an independent party, several years down the road. In the event of legal proceedings, most jurisdictions require agencies to produce this file information.
Consider attaching a cover letter to any important documents your agency sends to a client, and make sure to support all offers to obtain higher limits or additional coverage with thorough documentation. Similarly, document any customer rejection of such an offer and communicate it to the customer. Diary. The successful agencies I spoke with use effective and efficient diary systems that enable monitoring and follow-up on key documents, meetings, renewals, quotes applications and more. This also includes diaries for management to periodically review employee work and confirm adequate coverage for employees while they are sick or on vacation. Checklists and workflow. It is important to ensure consistency in the way employees perform their jobs. A good checklist helps provide direction. Audits. A variety of parties can complete an audit, including internal/quality managers, outside consultants and defense counsel. Most of the agencies I spoke with combine periodic internal audit procedures with independent external audit procedures. The key is to make sure additional people review processes and workflow, and to have at least one independent set of eyes review agency practices and procedures. The most successful agencies take risk management very seriously. That means creating and nurturing a highly effective company culture that expects buy-in from everyone, top to bottom. Brian Butcher is a vice president and claim expert at Swiss Re Corporate Solutions and teleworks out of the Overland Park, Kansas office.
Megan Linn E&O Administrator firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: (605) 224-6234 Fax: (605) 224-6235
Division of Insurance News and Views South Dakota Division of Insurance FY2016 Annual Report The South Dakota Division of Insurance provided the following performance indicators and revenue information to be included in the Department of Labor and Regulation (DLR) 2016 Annual Report: Performance Indicators Total Licensed / Domestic Companies Domestic Companies Financial Exams Company Market Conduct Exams Companies Licensed/Approved Mergers Agent Licenses Issued Agent Appointments Issued Agent Licenses Renewed Resident Agent Renewals Renewed Appointments Agent Appointment Cancellations Property/Casualty Filings Reviewed Life/Health Filings Reviewed Consumer Complaints Closed Enforcement/Closed Files Continuing Education Courses Reviewed New Claims Subsequent Injury Claims Paid Fund
Performance Indicators 2014 2015 Revenues
Total General Funds Collected Admissions Company Renewal Agent Licensing/Renewal Exam Fees Fees (Insurance Miscellaneous and Legal Operating Fund) Retaliatory/Filing Administrative Penalties Lists and Labels Certification Letters Investment Council Interest Course Approval Sub-Injury Fund Assessment Subsequent Injury Fund Investment Council Interest Continuing Education Fund Agent Renewal Fees Workers’ Compensation Policy Fee (Transferred to USDOL) Examination Fund (effective 7/1/97) Special Collections Investment Council Interest Federal Grants Total
1,416 / 70 3 5 28/16 15,199 63,892 23,070 3,422 203,150 58,362 7,599 3,372 644 1,154 747 3 72
1,385 / 73 5 5 17/11 16,614 81,665 28,827 1,699 197,247 70,482 6,046 2,828 742 1,195 670 3 65
2015 $79,706,674 92,020 81,235 8,413,011 15,440 8,399 1,442,179 1,252,694 1,180 4,160 16,335 18,675 7,708 14,855
2016 $84,541,512 76,488 81,480 8,559,141 15,160 7,949 1,172,200 554,577 270 3,860 19,626 16,475 3,492,914 21,208
274,331 1,359,000 0 303,599 $93,085,475
277,871 1,342,000 0 146,702 $100,366,703
The department’s annual report is available to the public and can be viewed in its entirety in the “Publications” section of the DLR website at http://dlr.sd.gov/.
Kayla’s Technology Advice Cyber: More Than Just Hackers Article Sponsored By: CNA
There are two kinds of companies: those that have been hacked, and those that will be. Despite high-profile stories of companies getting hacked, many still make the mistake of thinking it won’t happen to them. Here are a few common cyber myths—and how you can combat them when offering cyber coverage to your commercial clients.
The insurance industry needs to broaden its perception of which commercial clients need cyber coverage. “In the last year, professional services—accounting firms, law firms, architects and engineers—have definitely increased the level at which they are purchasing coverage,” Wilson says. “We’re starting to see some manufacturers purchasing coverage as their network drives a significant part of what they do these days.” Graf agrees, pointing out that manufacturing and construction are two fields which will see increased cyber exposure within the next five years.
MYTH: Cyber coverage is just about hackers.
MYTH: If you’re following privacy notification laws, you’re doing enough.
“Cyber” is one of the biggest misnomers in the insurance world because it implies that this type of coverage only pertains to your network and the data on it. Not true.
With the exception of HIPAA information,notification after a breach is regulated at the state level. But if a breach occurs and the law requires no action, can a business survive the reputational harm?
“The forms we sell address any type of confidential information in your possession, regardless of format,” says Katie Wilson, CNA vice president, underwriting. “It could be paper documents, a lost laptop or an employee sending an email to the wrong place—none of which has anything to do with someone hacking into your network.”
“The No. 1 thing that differentiates CNA’s coverage is that if you have personal information hacked, we give you the option to notify whether or not there is a legal obligation to notify,” Wilson says. “You don’t get that option with some carriers. And we also don’t tie in our definition of personally identifiable information to privacy laws. We certainly will respond as a privacy law requires. But if you have confidential information that has been breached and it doesn’t fall within the parameters of a notification law, a CNA policy allows for voluntary notification.”
MYTH: As long as your network is protected, you’re safe. It’s not just about protecting the data—it’s also about educating your employees. In the cyber age, everyone is a risk manager. Nick Graf, director of risk control at CNA, notes that one of the carrier’s differentiators is the guidance clients receive on information security policies. “Employees can be the strongest asset or the weakest link,” Graf says. “The majority of these attacks usually start with some sort of employee mistake—opening an attachment, sending a file unencrypted.” That means training employees about cyber risks is critical. MYTH: Technology and health care companies are the prime purchasers of cyber coverage.
MYTH: Only big companies are at risk of a cyber breach. Ransomware continues to grow exponentially year over year, and it’s hitting all organizations—from those in government to the private industry to one- or twoperson doctor’s offices. “The bad guys really don’t care how big or small you are,” Graf says. “It’s very likely that they can extract some sort of financial compensation for their activity. Regardless of the size of your company, I can promise that you will be the target of one of these attacks soon. And a single event without coverage could very easily be a business-ending event.”
Independent agents throughout your area Count on EMC ® for a number of reasons. • 100-plus years of commercial lines experience • Expert loss control services • Responsive service delivered by 16 fully-staffed branch offices across the country Let us show you how EMC Insurance Companies can work for you. SUE ZASTROW Commercial Lines Underwriting Supervisor EMC Omaha Branch
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www.emcins.com © Copyright Employers Mutual Casualty Company 2017. All rights reserved.
IIASD Now Offers Online New Hire and Leadership Training Onboarding your new talent can be seamless We know hiring a new employee can be exciting for your agencies future, yet finding the time and proper resources to appropriately train them can seem like a daunting task. That’s why we’ve partnered with New Level Partners, LLC (NLP), a national learning and development company, to offer affordable options for our members to train your employees on a self-paced online platform. IIASD has opted to forego commission to offer this learning tool to members at cost. Each course is designed with full interactivity including expert narration to keep the employee engaged in the content. Courses also contain knowledge checkpoints and a final assessment to track the student’s retention of course material. Courses available for immediate purchase and download include: • Commercial Insurance • Personal insurance • Business Skills • Emerging Leader’s You can head to www.iiasd.org and purchase the courses which range in price from $64 to $220 depending on the topic. In addition, you can contact the NLP team at any time to receive an update on your employee’s progress to ensure they’re completing the courses as expected. Courses can be purchased and accessed 24/7 by visiting: https://iiasdstore.mycoursecenter.com/ Buy in bulk and save! Members may purchase for multiple employees for significant savings. Buy five for the price of three or buy 10 for the price of five.
Would this prospecting piece catch the eye of your clients or prospects? You’re vital to the success of your business it could fail if you become disabled. If you ability to drive was suddenly curtailed due to a disabling illness or injury, what revenue-generating options are available to help meet your continuing business expenses?
Business Overhead Expense Insurance With Assurity’s AssurityBalance® Business Overhead Expense Insurance (BOE), you have the help you need to protect your business, your truck, and your home in the event of your disability. BOE’s advantages include: • Coverage of your business’s general operating expenses - including truck payments. • Affordable premiums that may be tax deductible.* • Waiver of Premium and Rehabilitation Benefits available.
Call Financial Markets, Inc. today to learn more about Business Overhead Expense Insurance! Policy Form No. A-D106. This policy may contain reductions of benefits, limitations and exlcusions. For costs and complete details of the coverage, please contact your agent or Assurity Life Insurance company. Products may vary by age, state, premium or interest rate. Financial Markets, Inc. does not solicit in the state of New York. Financial Markets, Inc. does not provide tax or legal advice. *Tax questions should be referred to your tax advisor. A993-0216
We can customize this ad for your agency! Contact our Marketing Department! 800-888-2829 Ext. 2
Financial Markets, Inc.
We are here for your life. SM
Clark Title Company, a division of Titles of Dakota, is a full-service abstract company with nine locations across South Dakota. We have proudly served the Aberdeen area since 1922 and we hand-pick all of our employees to ensure you and our customers have the best possible experience. In addition to always putting our customers and communities first, our staff are some of the most knowledgeable and experienced people in the industry.
“NORTH STAR MUTUAL INSURANCE COMPANY, Cottonwood, MN, is seeking to fill a Floating Claims Adjuster position for Southeastern South Dakota. Please visit the Careers tab at www.northstarmutual.com for further information regarding this position and instructions on how to apply.”
Abstract/Title Division Manager: Our abstract/title division manager provides leadership, direction and guidance for abstract/title activities. The successful candidate will have a bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience, expert knowledge and experience in the operation and function of an abstract/title business. Candidate must possess strong management abilities, be able to recognize and foster service personnel, exhibit strong leadership qualities and communication skills, make sound decisions and possess a high degree of personal integrity. All new employees must pass pre-employment screening. Clark Title Company is recognized as a market leader in customer care, community reinvestment and depth of services. If you’re looking for a fulfilling career with a winning team, see a full job description and apply at www.bankwest-sd.com, contact your local Career Center, or call BankWest at (800) 2530362. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin.
Agent & Customer Service Oriented Providing for Your Insurance Needs al & Person cial r e m Com bile o m o t u A
/ wners Farmo ners ow Ranch
MISSOURI VALLEY MUTUAL INSURANCE COMPANY Main Office in Burke, SD SERVING SOUTH DAKOTA FOR OVER 100 YEARS
Contact Brady Peck 605-775-2636
Homeow ner Mobileho & me Fire & Allie d Lines
a Umbrell Liability
Personal & General Liability
Andy Kraus, CPCU | Vice President of Agencies 800.742.7433 | email@example.com
IIA Resources Untapped Market: Home Business Insurance The vast majority of new businesses get their start at home and continue to be run from home after the startup phase. Are you passing up the opportunities to write these policies? It’s very likely that you have customers with a home business exposure you don’t even know about:
• homemaker bakes cakes and cookies to sell at fairs • recent college grad designs websites for local businesses • retired music teacher gives piano lessons • an accountant offers tax prep services • a young woman starts selling LuLaRoe
These are just a few examples of popular home business scenarios, but RLI offers coverage for over 140 classes of business. Many of these business owners don’t realize that their Homeowners or Renters policy most likely excludes coverage for business exposures on premises. A wise agent will regularly ask each customer about any home-based business exposures, and then review the customer’s existing policies to determine if additional coverage is needed. RLI’s Home Business policy provides coverage for these businesses, including up to $1M in business liability protection, up to $100,000 in comprehensive coverage for business personal property (on an off premises), and a range of optional coverages…allowing you to offer a customized policy at an affordable price. Premiums are typically just $250-350. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to protect your customers, increase retention, and grow your book. Quoting and submitting business is faster and easier than ever with RLI’s new and improved submission process. For more information, quoting instructions, or to contact your state’s administrator, visit www.iiaba.net/ homebusiness.
Featured Platinum Partner
Andy Kraus, CPCU | Vice President of Agencies | 800.742.7433 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Dues Deductibility: Dues are not deductible as a charitable contribution but may be deductible as an ordinary and necessary business expense. The portion of the dues related to lobbying expense is NOT DEDUCTIBLE as an ordinary and necessary business expense. The non-deductible portion of dues for 2016 are as follows:
IIABA 22.61% IIASD 15.5%
has been insuring businesses for over
www.cwgins.com Our customers include: • Wholesale Distributors • Small Business Owners • Light Manufacturers
The companies of
Continental Western Group® Your leader in commercial insurance, safety and experience.
CWG is Strong, Local & Trusted.
• Agribusinesses • Bulk Petroleum Companies • Contractors
Products and services are provided by one or more insurance company subsidiaries of W. R. Berkley Corporation. Not all products and services are available in every jurisdiction and the precise coverage afforded by any insurer is subject to the actual terms and conditions of the policies as issued. Continental Western Group is not liable for any loss resulting from use of information in this advertisement. | Copyright © 2016 Continental Western Group®. All rights reserved. | 1688CWG-AD-02-16
2/16/16 12:57 PM
PROFESSIONAL COVERAGE IS OUR MIDDLE NAME. Only Burns & Wilcox has the depth and breadth of experience to deliver the right solutions right away. Minneapolis, Minnesota | 612.564.1880 toll free 800.328.1693 | fax 612.564.1881
Denver, Colorado | 303.804.0200 toll free 800.888.9701 | fax 303.804.0207
Commercial | Professional | Personal | Brokerage | Binding | Risk Management Services
www.nwgf.com INSURANCE FOR: Homeowners Farmowners Modular Homeowners Personal Auto Farm Property Dwelling Property Mobile Homes Excess Liability Farm and Personal Liability Classic Vehicle Semi-Truck
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Why American West Insurance?
Independent Insurance Agents of SD Funds Scholarship Program at Southeast Technical Institute
• Local company with over 60 years agriculture insurance experience • Quality products • Competitive pricing • Expert claims and underwriting services
Be Protected. Be Sure®. yourawi.com To learn more about AWI contact Bruce Meyer at email@example.com or call 605-929-2782.
Agribusiness • Farm & Ranch • Farm & Ranch Auto • Personal Auto Excess Liability • Watercraft • Crop-Hail • Multi-Peril
WE STAND FOR
And support the great work you do as agents in the agricultural community. By working with us, the nation’s number one farm insurer, you can offer your customers one-of-a-kind protection from an experienced industry leader. Partner with America’s top farm insurer today.
SHERRY PACZOSA Regional Sales Manager
402-450-3176 firstname.lastname@example.org WS4U.com
Source: 2013 Munich Re: Report. Based on premium and loss data. Nationwide, the Nationwide N and Eagle and Nationwide is on your side are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. We Stand For You is a service mark of Nationwide Agribusiness Insurance Company. ©2015 Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. Products underwritten by Nationwide Agribusiness Insurance Company, Farmland Mutual Insurance Company, Allied Property and Casualty Insurance Company and AMCO Insurance Company. Home Office: 1100 Locust Street Des Moines, IA. GPO-0187AO.1 (01/15)
Our industry has a critical shortage of workforce who have a basic knowledge of insurance and are interested in pursuing a career in sales/marketing, customer service, technology, underwriting, adjusting, auditing and the list goes on. The average age of insurance employees is now at 59. In an attempt to recruit high school graduates and second career students, IIASD has funded a scholarship program at Southeast Technical Institute for the 2017 Fall Semester. The initial scholarship will provide funding up to $2,500 for first-year insurance degree students. Students who complete the first year and are committed to the insurance program will be offered second-year scholarships. The insurance degree is an online course and will be available to all South Dakota students who enroll at SE Technical Institute. The degree does include financial course components which can be completed in the traditional classroom at SE Tech or on line. All insurance components are online courses. Spread the word to your local high school counselors. Southeast Technical Institute is marketing the scholarship to all schools. No better recruiter than someone who has successfully chosen insurance as their career. Contact Chellee Nemec at Chellee. Nemec@southeasttech.edu or Dana Wolff at Dana.Wolff@southeasttech.edu You can view more information about the Insurance course at: http://catalog.southeasttech.edu/preview_program.ph p?catoid=10&poid=1129&returnto=2040 Scholarship Deadline is March 15, 2017.
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Top three reasons a Trusted Choice Profile is better than an Agency website by: Marty Agather
Thankfully, today most of our members have a website. Power of Content However, many websites deliver less value than agencies expect. While there are a number of reasons why, there Agencies inability to rank for insurance search terms is an easy and inexpensive way to address these issues. is problematic. The number of agencies with unaided recall (the ability to remember that Smith Insurance is If your website isn’t great, the easiest and least expensive an agency in Lakeville MN without a reminder) is very way to improve your agency’s presence on the web is to small. Thus, anyone who is Googling the agency name purchase an Advantage profile on TrustedChoice.com. already is very familiar with the agency, but a minute percentage of searchers. Mobile First Real world search is more likely to involve keywords Too many agency websites are not mobile enabled. related to insurance. And when the consumer searches for volunteer board insurance, the majority of agencies As anyone with a smart phone knows, more and more have ZERO chance of being shown in the top 20 pages searches are done on mobile devices. If the searcher is of the results. using a mobile device, Google penalizes websites that aren’t mobile friendly. This is where TrustedChoice.com’s value proposition comes into it’s own. Today, TrustedChoice.com is one of Why? Have you ever spent too long trying to scroll the top 5 results on page ONE (one of the 5 best pages around a website that has been miniaturized to fit on in the internet) for over 11,000 insurance search terms. your phone? How about hitting the wrong hot link a This is due to the breadth and quality of the content few times because the links are too small and close (web pages) that TrustedChoice.com publishes every together to allow your fingers to hit the right one? week. Advantage profiles are mobile optimized, allowing searchers to interact with your agency in a much more intuitive and attractive manner. Profile Rank
When that consumer educates themselves on their insurance issues and then looks to find a local agency with whom they can work, Advantage agencies are shown at the top of the list.
Call Today! Most agency websites don’t rank (show up on page one) for any search terms other than the name of the agency. These three reasons, the breadth of content and its high Many times, they don’t even rank for that. rank in Google search, the added visibility to an agency’s own presence in search, and the mobile optimized TrustedChoice.com is considered to be a very reputable profile all create significant benefit and are a very cost site by Google. That means that Advantage agency effective way to leverage an agency’s web presence. profiles rank very well, in some instances more highly than the agency’s own website! For more information, call TrustedChoice.com at 1-855-372-8755.
Use Promo Code 1594626 to receive your 15% member discount
A.D. Banker of the Dakotas has changed its name to 1st Dakota Insurance School. We continue to partner with IIASD to offer the following:
Sandy Kost 1st Dakota Insurance School 2601 S Minnesota Ave Suite 105-244 Sioux Falls, SD 57105 605.271.4440 or 877.317.3087 email@example.com
**Licensing Materials and Classes (for Property/Casualty and Life/Health Exam Preparation) **Continuing Education Classes **Online Courses and Webinars We are continuing to offer the materials you are familiar with. Be sure to check out our new website at www.1stdakins.com
Stiffing cohorts he had hired to torch his Range Rover for an insurance payday led NYPD cop Carlos Becker to a fraud conviction. Becker blew up his 13-year career in the process. He hired two people to unload the SUV and claimed it was stolen so he could score $33,000 from Geico. His cohorts burned up the vehicle but Becker never paid them. One irate torch told law enforcement about the plot and also recorded a conversation with Becker, who then pleaded guilty and was fired from the force. He will be federally sentenced in April.
Posing as a public adjuster, Julian Garcia-Seller allegedly faked water stains in homes to maneuver inflated claims against Florida’s state-run home insurer of last resort. So says the state CFO. Garcia-Seller allegedly met with homeowners seeking assistance with claims. The Miami man promised to relieve the stress of claims by filing claims for them. GarciaSellers hired a local artist to paint water stains on ceilings, walls, and floors using a caffeine-based liquid. That enabled him to inflate water-damage claims. He also used public notaries to forge policyholder signatures on insurance documents assigning their claims to him. He often acted behind homeowners’ backs, stealing nearly $100,000 of claims checks. Garcia-Seller faces up to 30 years in prison if convicted. Abusing assignment-of-benefits for water-damage claims raised premiums 6.4 percent for Citizens Property Insurance in September, officials say.
Bernisha Ann Hodges admitted she needed “additional money to make ends meet” for herself and her two sons. So the Washington, DC woman made 13 injury claims under her accident indemnity policy. Her first claim was legitimate, involving a vehicle accident with non-disabling injuries. Hodges soon began filing false claims ranging from $320 to $530 for ambulance transport, physical therapy, and follow-up treatment for her and her two sons. Hodges altered police reports, EMS reports, and medical records. She filed a total of $4,025 in claims online. Hodges told herself that she would stop after the last false claim, though her bout of conscience came too late. Hodges pleaded guilty, must repay the stolen money, and serve two years of federal probation. The DC Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking played a lead role in the successful investigation. Kevin Flaherty earned his name on the naughty list and a lump of holiday coal. The Haverhill, Massachusetts ex-city employee lied to insurers and police about when a tree branch fell and struck his 2004 Nissan Titan. Flaherty did not have coverage and wanted a $4,102 insurance payout for the damage. He admitted lying when police showed him information from their investigation. Flaherty steered himself into a year of probation. But this is not his first trouble with the law; the Highway Department earlier fired Flaherty for stealing paving materials. He worked for his father, who was the city’s Director of Public Works. Flaherty also received three years of probation and 200 hours of community service for a false claim related to his work with the Highway Department.
Chiropractor Adam Burke strode past reporters without comment after pleading not guilty to bilking auto insurers with bogus treatments of supposed crash victims in the Minneapolis area. Burke was among 21 suspects scooped up in a large raid on chiropractic clinics that falsely billed no-fault insurers more than $20 million, the state fraud bureau says. The charges were announced last month. Six chiropractors and multiple patient recruiters are charged. Treatments were unneeded or never given, prosecutor say. Runners were paid $1,000 per crash victim they bought to the chiropractors, allegedly received their kickbacks after patients reached a given number of treatments. Sisi Imani hit a pole in a parking lot while driving his 1990 Honda Prelude, the Olympia, Washington -area woman told her health insurer and Imani’s health insurer paid for treating her supposed injuries. Imani then double-dipped telling Geico she paid those bills out of pocket, and submitting forged medical documents. She fraudulently collected $3,657 in PIP and medical expenses. Aleage Franks and her three children were passengers in Imani’s car, Franks lied to Geico. Franks also submitted forged medical bills for herself and her children to Imani’s insurer, which paid Franks $13,061. There is no record Franks or her kids visited the hospital or were involved in the collision. Imani and Franks face theft charges, says the insurance department, which led the investigation.
www.claimsassoc.com Jeff Jares, AIC AIM, President Christopher W. Madsen J.D. General Counsel Adjusters – Sioux Falls Nancy Almendinger Cory Beck Lynn Bren Kay Greve Collin Karsky Chad Moore Kimberly Rausch Tim Wieker
Jennifer Andrisen Selzler Bill Blackman Blake Dykstra Dave Johnston Amy Kvernmo Wendi Peterson Dave Sendelbach
Adjusters – Rapid City John Keffeler
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Kelly Rud RN BA LNCC Deb Whipple RN BA CCM
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IIASDâ€™s Schedule of Events for 2017 May 3rd-6th Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C. May 21st-24th E&O Program Conference Madison, WI June 5th-8th E&O Seminars in Sioux Falls, Aberdeen, Pierre, Rapid City June 20th-21st River Days/Walleye Classic in Pierre Board Meeting September 6th-10th IIABA Fall Leadership Conference Chicago, IL October 1st-3rd Annual Convention Downtown Holiday Inn Sioux Falls
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Farm & Small Town Highlighted with Make-A-Wish and Fire Department Grant Farm & Small Town Banquet held in Chamberlain on February 1st featured the 2016 Fire Department Grant award to Presho Fire Department and the kick-off of the 2017 Trusted Choice Make-A-Wish fundraiser. Educational sessions were held on Wednesday afternoon and Thursday morning on Crop, Life and Health, Flood and Environmental Liability – Pollution. Great networking and social time among agents and company/industry partners is always a big part of our events. Paul Krueger from Make-A-Wish South Dakota shared touching stories and a video of wishes granted to South Dakota children with life-threatening medical conditions. IIASD has been a $7,500 sponsor of the Make-A-Wish Walk in Rapid City and the annual golf tournament in Sioux Falls through the grant we received each year from our National Trusted Choice. For 2017, we are planning to use that $7,500 TC grant to fund wishes. Our goal is to raise at least an additional $2,500 to add to the $7,500 grant. We got a great start at Farm & Small Town with $770. Fund raising will continue at other events. Hayti (District 2) and Presho (District 5) Fire Departments were 2016 recipients of the $5,000 grants. We had the privilege of awarding the check to Hayti on January 18th at their annual appreciation night and hosted Presho Fire Department at our Farm & Small Town Banquet. Hayti VFD is purchasing bunker gear for 4 new volunteers and Presho VFD is equipping firefighters with grassland bunker gear. Cover page photos show nominating agent Cindy Egeberg from Fischer Rounds-Watertown awarding the check in Hayti. Presho Fire Department was joined by all IIASD agents attending Farm & Small Town. Mike Sprenger, nominated Presho FirePage Department. IIA Newsletter Ad 5 xBankWest-Presho 7 2016 4 gray burst_Layout 1 2/2/2016 12:01 PM 1
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Dare we say, no one does it better! We are the No. 1 writer of Work Comp in South Dakota and are proud of our A- rating from A.M. Best. Our company is propelled by passionate, skilled professionals who work hard every day to make sure we stay on the top of our game. We aim to provide an amazing customer experience to our agents and insureds that builds credibility, trust, and conﬁdence. We aren’t simply trying to be Superman, but rather be better than him.
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Big ‘I’ Briefs Congress on Flood Insurance With the expiration of the NFIP looming in September, the Big “I” and other insurance associations kicked off 2017 with a briefing on flood insurance fundamentals for new congressional staff. The Jan. 25 briefing on Capitol Hill focused on why the peril of flood is different than other hazards, where the nascent private flood insurance market currently stands, how the NFIP operates and why timely reauthorization is important. The briefing featured an insurance agent from the Flood Insurance Producers National Committee—in which the Big “I” participates—and representatives from Bankers Insurance and J.P. Morgan. The NFIP is up for reauthorization on Sept. 30. The Big “I” anticipates that many members of Congress will seek substantial reforms to the program, including a larger role for the private market. However, in the absence of a viable private market alternative for current policyholders, the Big “I” will continue advocating for a long-term extension of the NFIP. The Big “I” supports the slow growth of the private market as a complement to the NFIP and will continue educating Congress on the essential role that agents play in the delivery of flood insurance. Flood insurance and the reauthorization of the NFIP will be a major topic at the Big “I” Legislative Conference, May 3-5 in Washington, D.C. Article By: Jennifer Webb is Big “I” federal government affairs counsel.
What Sales Teams can Learn from the New England Patriots by John Chapin Even if you hate the New England Patriots, you have to admit they have a formula that works. And the truth is, their secret sauce isn’t so secret, in fact, it’s rather simple and obvious. While simple and obvious doesn’t mean easy, here’s how your team can use their formula to dominate their own field of play, provided you’ve got the stomach for it. Ingredients of a Dominant, Winning Team Ingredient #1: A Willingness to Charge into Hell. “Everyone wants to go to Heaven, but no one wants to die.” I’m not sure who said that, but it is the mindset of most people when it comes to achieving almost anything great. When I work with an organization on where they want to go, everyone is all smiles as we create the vision of the Land of Milk and Honey. When we start discussing the plan for what it will take to get there, facial expressions change quickly. Most humans want the weight loss, the great relationship, and the win, without the work. If you want to achieve your version of six straight AFC Championship Games and a record nine Super Bowls, not only do you have to work, but you have to far outwork everyone else. You also have to endure great mental and physical pain to grow and become the person and/or team worthy of the reward. There will be long days, tough calls, tough conversations, rejection, failures, and trials and tribulations that will make the grittiest of individuals cower. Yes, the prize will be worth it, but it’s going to take a lot of blood, sweat, tears, and pain to get there. Buckle up. Ingredient #2: A Winning Culture The winning culture is built on a foundation of working hard and doing your job. As we know, rarely is it the most intelligent or talented that win. It’s the person who shows up early, leaves late, and gets the job done no matter what. Julian Edelman, a seventh round draft pick, shows up at 5:30 a.m. before anyone else. Danny Amendola, undrafted, works his butt off too. Same with Chris Hogan, who had only one year of college football experience and about 150 yards receiving. By the way, he had more yards than his entire college career in one game against Pittsburgh, 180, a Patriot AFC Championship record. The culture also includes perseverance, persistence, mental toughness, a positive attitude, and a team-over-individual mindset. The Patriots had to let two great players go this year because they were poisoning the team. Not easy, but they understand that one negative person, no matter how good, hurts the team in the long run. You are only as strong as your weakest link, and the weakest link hurts everyone involved with or touched by the team. Your weakest link is hurting you, your profits, your other workers, and ultimately your customers. Ingredient #3: A Leadership Team that Isn’t Afraid to Lead Leading includes setting expectations, holding people accountable, being a good example, being willing to work hard and make tough decisions, and not giving in to the whiners and complainers. Recently I was working with a company whose objective was to get all their salespeople to the level of the top two producers. I gave them a process to follow which, when used by other companies, increased their sales by an average of 278% over 12 months. The initial reaction from a member of the management team was, “If we put this together and force our people to learn it, there will be a revolt. They already think we’re pushing them too hard.” When I asked who would object, I was told it would be the lowest performers. I then asked two pointed questions, one, why are they concerned about the opinions of the lowest performers who probably shouldn’t be there anyway and, two, who’s running the company them, or the lowest performers?
The biggest issues I see in the workplace are a lack of accountability and letting negative, low-performers poison the environment. This is baffling to me. No leader worth their salt would put up with negative people who continually miss quota while complaining, questioning management, and causing problems in an attempt to do less work for the same or more pay. They should be shown the door ASAP. It amazes me when owners make decisions based upon how much push back they’ll get from the negative people and those that don’t want to work. How long do you think you’re negative in the New England Patriots locker room? How long are you allowed to skirt your responsibilities and not do your job? Exactly. We all know their motto: DO YOUR JOB. That’s one key reason they are great. True leadership requires that you are willing to work hard, get your hands dirty, deal with the issues head on, and that you get negative, lazy people on board or out quickly. Again, these people kill morale, productivity, the bottom line, and everything you’re trying to accomplish. Negativity and people with a poor work ethic are such as cancer, that if all your people fell in these two categories, you’re better off getting rid of everyone and starting from scratch as a one-person shop than dealing with even one of them. A key aspect of leadership is to provide people with a positive, professional work environment. Ingredient #4: A Process that Works and People Who Buy in and are Committed The New England Patriots have a successful process that works and everyone drinks the Kool-Aid and follows in lock-step like an elite military organization. When you show up in their locker room you’re expected to follow and trust in the process. No questioning, no complaining about the hard work, no distractions from the process, just complete faith that the process works and that those calling the shots know exactly what they’re doing. Your only job is to get in line, follow along, do your job, and go to a record ninth Super Bowl.
When choosing an insurance carrier, make it simple. Go with an established company that is financially solid and trustworthy. United Fire Group (UFG) was named to Forbes’ “America’s 50 Most Trustworthy Financial Companies” list for the second year in a row. The honor is straightforward and simple: trust matters.
UNITED FIRE GROUP, INC. | www.ufgins.com | 800-332-7977 118 Second Avenue SE, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
Agency Risk Management Essentials: Is your website doing more harm than good? Your agency’s website is your “business card” to the world. Well managed, it can be the cornerstone of your operational and marketing strategy. If not, it can and will be used to strengthen a claimant’s E&O case against you. The Swiss Re Corporate Solutions claims team has seen an increasingly emerging issue stemming from this evolving part of your business. Seemingly harmless content on your website, emphasizing competitive advantages or certain expertise, can very quickly and unintentionally increase the agency’s standard of care resulting in a higher duty than normally required. That can be detrimental to your defense in a claim situation. To help mitigate the risk of an increased standard of care, we consulted risk management professionals with expertise in this area. Their suggestions are shown below. We hope you find these useful in creating and reviewing your agency website’s content.
Do clearly specify in which states the agency is licensed.
Don’t say the agency does things or provides services it does not do or provide.
Clearly state the lines of coverage the agency writes (or does not write). For example: not all P&C agencies handle benefits lines.
Don’t say that you can ensure that any claim will be fully covered.
Do clearly state that misstatements or omissions of relevant information by the client can lead to price variation or even declination or rescission of coverage.
Don’t use terms such as “expert”, “specialists”, “best price”, “most comprehensive”, “fully covered”, or “partner”.
Do clearly state that information requested to provide a quote or work on coverage will not be shared with carriers or with any other entity without the applicant’s permission.
Avoid terms promising absolutes such as “immediate response time”, “ALL lines of insurance”, “all risk”, “24/7”, “all carriers”, “addressing ALL of your coverage needs”, “constantly reviewing”.
Be clear: requesting coverage does not guarantee coverage can be provided. Coverage can begin only with specific statement by a licensed member of the agency staff.
Don’t include client testimonials that show the clients’ names and identifying information without being sure the testimonial is specific to their experience thus avoiding an increase in your standard of care. Be sure to have their express written permission, along with a procedure to remove their testimonial if they are no longer a customer.
Do clearly state by including a disclaimer that none of the information provided in the website is a guarantee that insurance will be provided or that the agency is obligated to procure insurance for the website visitor.
Don’t launch a website without carefully reviewing the language, with an E&O risk management eye. Template agency websites or advertising firms simply may not have E&O on their radar. Involve your legal counsel in reviewing the language.
Do obtain express written consent from your carrier(s) or any other entity(s) if you use their name or logo on your website.
Don’t have a quote mechanism (form-fill or Rater) and then fail to respond in a timely manner.
Do use a Privacy Statement on your website and be sure to encrypt any pages that collect Personal Identifying Information, such as an online quote form.
Don’t use open text boxes for customers to type messages to you unless adequately encrypted. You have no control over the information entered in the text box. If a breach occurs during transmission of that message, your agency may be held liable for the release of Personal Identifying Information.
REMEMBER: Risk Management starts before the sale
For Additional Information Please Contact: Megan Linn at (605)224-6234 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
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RE‐PRODUCTION COST INSURANCE
With the dramatic downturn in grain prices, do your grain producers have enough coverage to guarantee their margin? Probably not…UNLESS…they have Production Cost Insurance, a NEW PRIVATE product offered by Global Ag Risk Solutions and exclusively from Heartland Crop Insurance. Finally an insurance product that allows farmers the chance to farm! The product is simple…the goal: Protect the producers 5 year historical margin…How do we do this?
Average 5 year Grain Sales (Including Hedging) ‐Seed 5 year average ‐Fertilizer ‐Chemical
We then insure a portion of the FCMC at a level the insured chooses PLUS 100% of the actual costs of Seed, Fertilizer and Chemical.
NO need to cut back to cheap seed. NO need to cut back on fertilizer rates. NO need to skimp on chemical applications.
Fixed Cost Margin Coverage ‐ FCMC
︠⃝ Covers both Fixed costs and Input costs!
PCI isn’t subsidized by the Federal Government so producers aren’t required to comply with programs managed by the Farm Service Agency (FSA), Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) or Risk Management Agency (RMA). It is up to the producer to make the decision for their operation.
Focuses on the producer’s numbers…NO COUNTY AVERAGES! Revenue at their actual selling or contracted price‐‐ isn’t that the way it should be?
From the moment the application is signed, the worst case scenario is known. No guessing what the Projected or Harvest price ends up at‐ giving the confidence to use the right inputs, and grow the most profitable crop, in good years and bad. We know how tough managing risk in today’s industry can be. Heartland Crop Insurance can provide the answer.
A private, revenue‐based, risk management insurance solution that does what no other insurance can do.
FARM FOR PROFIT‐‐FARM TO SUCCEED—allow your insured’s to sleep well at night, knowing their investment is secure…Production Cost Insurance.
Contact us today to learn more—you owe it to your producers…and yourself! Locally: Lee Friesen – 605‐661‐2520 – SD Marketing Representative Nationally: HeartlandCropInsurance.com or 1‐888‐785‐5566 30
DON’T GET BITTEN BY AN E&O CLAIM YOU COULD HAVE AVOIDED.
Big “I” Risk Management Website
www.independentagent.com/EOHappens Big “I” members whose agency E&O insurance is written by Swiss Re through the Big “I” Professional Liability Program have access to an exclusive risk management web site. Log on today to fish for E&O claims frequency data, real-life case studies and analysis, sample client letters, sample agency procedures, agency E&O self assessments, podcasts on important E&O topics, and much more.
DON’T BE ON THE HOOK FOR: Failing to procure coverage requested by the client Not adequately identifying client exposures Failing to provide timely notice of a claim to the carrier Misrepresenting or not explaining policy provisions Providing inaccurate information to carriers Failing to properly add additional insureds or loss payees
POWER IN PARTNERS
DIAMOND Risk Administration Services PLATINUM Farmers Mutual of Nebraska Financial Markets Inc. Great Plains Brokerage Nationwide Mutual Insurance Co. QBE NAU GOLD Acuity CGB Diversified Services, Inc. Columbia Insurance Group Continental Western Group Dakota Claims Service Doss & Associates EMC Insurance Co. Farmers Mutual Hail of Iowa Graber & Associates Great American Insurance Co. Intek Cleaning and Restoration International Ag Insurance Solutions Le Mars Insurance Co. Liberty Mutual Insurance Midwest Family Mutual North Star Mutual Insurance Co. Pro Ag Rain & Hail, LLC SFM Mutual Insurance Co. The IMT Group United Fire Group Western National Insurance SILVER Accident Fund Ins Co. of America American West Insurance ArmTech Insurance Services Auto-Owners Insurance Avera Health Plans Buckeye Insurance Group Farmers Alliance Mutual NCMIC Finance Corporation North American Software Associates Northwest GF Mutual Insurance Progressive Insurance Co. Rainbow International Restoration of Sioux Falls Risk Placement Services Rural Community Insurance Services SafeCo Swiss Re State Auto Insurance Co. BRONZE Berkley Risk Administrators Bjornson/Sentinel E & L Expansion Capital Group LLC Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance Co. Insurance Alternatives, LLC Missouri Valley Mutual Insurance Co.