26 April, 2016
The difficulty of choosing the right insurance broker or company
As specialists in the charity insurance sector we constantly talk to prospective clients who are seeking to review the insurance requirements for their charity.
There are a plethora of companies purporting to be able to offer charity insurance so we had a quick look at the those appearing on the first page of Google for “Charity Insurance” to see who are our competitors and what type of advice our prospective clients might be receiving.
There were 10 companies including us on the page after taking out all the duplicates from a list of 17. The choice in terms of advice was as follows:
Access Insurance Services (Us!) Independent Advice – We act for You. Chartered Insurance Broker. Range of Insurers and some special and exclusive schemes.
- Competitor 1 – An insurance company who sell their own policies and act for themselves.
- Competitor 2 – Sells the policy of one insurer and act for the insurer in placing business.
- Competitor 3 – An Insurance Broker owned by an Insurance Company.
- Competitor 4 – (One of our suppliers and not really competing against us) – An Insurance Company specialising in Charity Insurance who direct potential clients to Insurance Brokers.
- Competitor 5 – (One of our suppliers who also trades direct to customers) – An Insurance Company who sell their own policies and act for themselves.
- Competitor 6 – An Insurance Broker dealing with several insurers.
- Competitor 7 – An Insurance Broker selling the policy of one insurer and act for the insurer in placing business.
- Competitor 8 – An Insurance Broker selling the policy of one insurer and act for the insurer in placing business.
- Competitor 9 – An Insurance Broker selling the policy of one insurer and act for the insurer in placing business – This policy does not cover Abuse Insurance – a significant failing as many charities will need the cover.
Also listed was the Charity Commission. Their advice was as follows:
How to insure your charity
Search for insurance providers on-line. Or you can:
- use a reputable insurance broker
- join a membership organisation for charities that offers insurance packages to its members
How do you choose?
The choice is fairly narrow. An insurance company will only act in their own interests. By this I mean for themselves as they are required by the FCA to provide appropriate products and services. However this means there is only their own policy that they can sell and your requirements may be far wider than this. An insurance broker selling the policy of one insurer is generally acting for that insurer in placing business with them and in the event of a claim thus ruling out independent advice.
A real concern is that the policy may be totally unsuitable where the advice is not being given. A situation that happens a lot is where a policy for a charity who have some involvement with children or vulnerable adults could exclude abuse cover when it is imperative that the charity has that protection.
You need to find a specialist who understands the market and can give you advice that is tailored to your needs. The specialist needs to act as if they were your own insurance department – looking at your risk exposures and finding the right risk transfer solution. The issue you have with a single solution provider is that the right risk transfer solution might not be available. A Chartered Insurance Broker is the obvious choice.
The Chartered Insurance Institute upholds professionalism in the industry and states:
“Increasingly, consumers – who have grown weary and sceptical following years of financial scandal and falling standards in commercial and retail life – are actively seeking out Chartered practitioners. As a Chartered body of more than a century’s standing the CII grants Chartered titles to individuals and organisations which meet strict qualifying criteria.
Our own status amongst 200 other quality brokers is to be found on this link and you can search for other members too: Access Insurance – Chartered Insurance Brokers