Industry News

  • Gain the Confidence You Need to Talk About Cyber

    November 26, 2018

    Cyber101 is an educational resource created by PIA and The PIA Partnership to help educate PIA members and their clients about the seven most common cyber risks faced by small and mid-sized businesses, as well as the business practices and insurance coverages that can reduce those risks.

    Cyber 101 focuses on seven key areas of risk: fraudulent funds transfer, extortion/ransomware, social engineering, business interruption, data breach/privacy, network security, and website media liability. Agents can learn more about each risk with additional resources such as interactive claims examples that demonstrate loss risks to clients, 1-page PDFS explaining the risk, and 30-minute webinars. PIA agents can also personalize and provide their clients with general cyber educational resources.

    Visit Cyber 101 today to gain the knowledge you need about the seven most common cyber risks faced by businesses.

    For additional information about The PIA Partnership, please visit

    http://www.ThePIAPartnership.com

    Thank you to the current PIA Partnership companies: Central Insurance Company, Encompass Insurance, Erie Insurance, Liberty Mutual Insurance, MetLife Auto & Home, National General Insurance, Progressive Insurance, Selective Insurance Group, State Auto Insurance Companies, and The Hanover Insurance Group.

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  • PIA, National Underwriter Announce 2019 Agent Survey

    November 14, 2018

    For the third year in a row, PIA is partnering with the National Underwriter to conduct an all-new survey of independent agents. The 2019 National Underwriter/PIA Independent Agent Survey will be sent out starting next week.

    The inaugural Agent Survey, which debuted in March 2017, provided the most comprehensive look ever offered at the demographics, books of business, selling practices and pain points of independent agents in the U.S. The 2018 Agent Survey yielded additional valuable insights for agents and carriers alike.

    PIA members will receive a link to the survey starting next week.

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  • The Hartford Difference

    November 14, 2018

    The Hartford is one of the largest flood insurance writers in the country, having written flood insurance through FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program for over three decades.

    The Hartford wants to be your go to flood market for both personal lines and commercial lines. Their dedicated flood sales and transfer teams want to earn your business by making it easy to do business and providing exceptional service for both you and your customers.

    If you would like more information about the program, attend a free webinar on Friday, November 16 at 2:00 P.M. Eastern to learn more about PIA’s national partnership with The Hartford and its flood insurance program. Joseph M. Surowiecki, Jr. of The Hartford will cover program details as well as answer any questions you may have about PIA’s long-standing flood insurance program with The Hartford.

    Register today.

    Can’t wait for the webinar? Learn more now.

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  • Flood is the Nation?s Most Common and Costly Disaster

    November 6, 2018

    The Hartford is one of the largest flood insurance writers in the country, having written flood insurance through FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program for over three decades.

    The Hartford wants to be your go to flood market for both personal lines and commercial lines. Their dedicated flood sales and transfer teams want to earn your business by making it easy to do business and providing exceptional service for both you and your customers. Flood producers enrolled in PIA’s Flood Program with The Hartford have benefitted from sales support, marketing materials and preferred commission rates.

    If you would like more information about the program, attend a free webinar on Friday, November 16 at 2:00 P.M. Eastern to learn more about PIA’s national partnership with The Hartford and its flood insurance program. Joseph M. Surowiecki, Jr. of The Hartford will cover program details as well as answer any questions you may have about PIA’s long-standing flood insurance program with The Hartford.

    Register today.

    Can’t wait for the webinar? Learn more now.

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  • PIA Meets With Federal Regulators

    October 16, 2018

    PIA National Immediate Past President Tim Russell is joining PIA staff members this week to meet with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) concerning the future of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). PIA is also meeting this week with representatives of the Federal Insurance Office (FIO) concerning terrorism risk insurance and the Department of Labor (DOL) regarding possible future revisions to the overtime rule.

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  • PA DOI Brochure on Short Term Health Plans

    August 28, 2018

    Recent rule changes enacted by the federal government mean insurers now can sell short-term policies that last up to 12 months, renew them for up to 36 months, reject people with pre-existing conditions, and place lifetime limits on what the coverage pays for.

    The Pennsylvania Insurance Department has published a brochure to help people understand the differences between coverage offered under Affordable Care Act (ACA) plans and short-term policies, and ask the right questions. States can still regulate short-term health plans. Legislators in California recently passed a ban on sales of short-term plans. New Jersey, Massachusetts, New York, Maryland, Hawaii and other states have severely restricted or banned short-term plans.

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  • Writing Flood Insurance Has Never Been Easier

    May 14, 2018

    Now in its 14th year, the PIA and The Hartford program offers easy enrollment for PIA members who want to earn great flood insurance commissions while working with a top-flight Write-Your-Own flood insurance company. The program is available to PIA members and their policyholders in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

    If you would like more information about the program, attend our free webinar on Friday, May 18 at 2:00 P.M. Eastern to learn more about PIA’s national partnership with The Hartford and its flood insurance program. Joseph M. Surowiecki, Jr. of The Hartford will cover program details as well as answer any questions you may have about PIA’s long-standing flood insurance program with The Hartford.

    Register today.

    Can’t wait for the webinar? Learn more now.

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  • Looking for a New Flood Insurance Market?

    May 1, 2018

    Take this opportunity to reevaluate your agency’s flood insurance program and consider PIA’s program with The Hartford.

    Now in its 14th year, the program offers easy enrollment for PIA members who want to earn great flood insurance commissions while working with a top-flight Write-Your-Own flood insurance company. The program is available to PIA members and their policyholders in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

    If you would like more information about the program, please attend our free webinar on Friday, May 18 at 2:00 P.M. Eastern to learn more about PIA’s national partnership with The Hartford and its flood insurance program. Joseph M. Surowiecki, Jr. of The Hartford will cover program details as well as answer any questions you may have about PIA’s long-standing flood insurance program with The Hartford.

    Register today.

    Can’t wait for the webinar? Learn more now.

     

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  • PIA Welcomes Nationwide Agents to Ranks of Independent Insurance Agents

    April 19, 2018

    WASHINGTON – The National Association of Professional Insurance Agents (PIA), a national trade association that represents independent insurance agents, has issued a statement welcoming Nationwide Insurance agents who will be transitioning into the independent agency insurance distribution system.

    On April 16, Columbus, Ohio-based Nationwide announced its intention to shift entirely to an independent agency distribution model by July 1, 2020. The company is one of the largest carriers that currently sells products through both exclusive and independent agents.

    “This is another illustration of the fact that the independent agency system is the insurance distribution system of choice,” said PIA National President Timothy G. Russell.

    Nationwide said in a press statement that there are approximately 2,000 existing agents who have been operating under the Nationwide brand that will have the opportunity to transition to an independent agency model between now and July 1, 2020. The company already has relationships with more than 10,000 independent agents across the United States.

    “PIA would like to welcome all the Nationwide agents who will be moving to what we believe is the superior independent agent system. We encourage the agents who will be joining our ranks to take advantage of many business-building programs offered by PIA that help add to an agency’s bottom line. In addition, PIA advocates for you in Congress and throughout the industry. You can rest assured that, to paraphrase Nationwide’s slogan, PIA is also on your side.”

    Founded in 1931, PIA is a national trade association that represents member insurance agents and their employees who sell and service all kinds of insurance, but specialize in coverage of automobiles, homes and businesses. PIA members are Local Agents Serving Main Street America SM.PIA’s web address is www.pianet.com.

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  • PIA Federal Legislative Summit This Week!

    April 19, 2018

    Professional Insurance Agents from around the country are converging this week on Washington, D.C. for the annual PIA Federal Legislative Summit (FLS). The Summit will be held April 24-25.

    PIA members will advocate for solutions that enable agents to better serve their clients and communities by encouraging Congress repeal the Federal Insurance Office (FIO), protect a strong and stable crop insurance program, and reinstate fair and just compensation in healthcare.

    PIA thanks our FLS Platinum sponsors The PIA Partnership and Progressive Insurance; our FLS Gold sponsor, Crop Risk Services; and Silver sponsors NAU Country Insurance, Liberty Mutual Insurance, and State Auto Insurance Companies.

    For more information, visit the FLS webpage at www.piafls.com.

    /news/insurance-news/2018/pia-federal-legislative-summit-april-24-25-1

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  • NFIP Extended Until July 31 As Part of Omnibus

    March 27, 2018

    Authorization for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) has been extended until July 31, 2018, as part of the fiscal 2018 omnibus appropriations bill that was passed by Congress and signed by President Trump on Friday March 23.

    PIA issued a statement noting that we are alarmed that Congress has decided to decouple the NFIP—that is separate it—from the funding of the federal government, rather than continue it to September 30 along with the rest of the omnibus.

    “In the absence of a must-pass legislative vehicle to which it can be attached, the program will now be in danger of expiring for an extended period during hurricane season, putting millions of flood insurance policyholders at risk,” said PIA National Vice President of Government Relations Jon Gentile. “In the wake of the devastating 2017 hurricanes, Congress should take no chances with the homes and businesses of policyholders.”

    PIA will continue to advocate for Congress to pass a long-term reauthorization of the program that recognizes the essential role independent agents play in providing expert advice to consumers. “Given the decision to decouple the program and the approach of another hurricane season, failure to reauthorize the NFIP by July is not an option,” Gentile said.

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  • PIA Federal Legislative Summit April 24-25

    March 27, 2018

    PIA members will converge on Washington, D.C. April 24-25 for the 2018 PIA Federal Legislative Summit (FLS). The annual PIA Federal Legislative Summit is a gathering of PIA members from around the country who come together to meet with their members of Congress and advocate their positions on issues of importance to Professional Insurance Agents.

    “Our annual legislative summit is a key opportunity for PIA members to solidify their relationships with members of Congress, in order to continue to advance our issues,” said PIA National President Tim Russell.

    PIA members will advocate for solutions that enable agents to better serve their clients and communities by encouraging Congress repeal the Federal Insurance Office (FIO), protect a strong and stable crop insurance program and reinstate fair and just compensation in healthcare.

    PIA thanks our FLS Platinum sponsors The PIA Partnership and Progressive Insurance; and our FLS Gold sponsor, Crop Risk Services.

    For more information, visit the FLS webpage at www.piafls.com.
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  • PIA Federal Legislative Summit April 24-25

    March 13, 2018

    flsbanner2018.jpg

    PIA members will converge on Washington, D.C. April 24-25 for the 2018 PIA Federal Legislative Summit (FLS). The annual PIA Federal Legislative Summit is a gathering of PIA members from around the country who come together to meet with their members of Congress and advocate their positions on issues of importance to Professional Insurance Agents.

    “Our annual legislative summit is a key opportunity for PIA members to solidify their relationships with members of Congress, in order to continue to advance our issues,” said PIA National President Tim Russell.

    PIA members will advocate for solutions that enable agents to better serve their clients and communities by encouraging Congress repeal the Federal Insurance Office (FIO), protect a strong and stable crop insurance program and reinstate fair and just compensation in healthcare.

    PIA thanks our FLS Platinum sponsors The PIA Partnership and Progressive Insurance.

    For more information, visit the FLS webpage at www.piafls.com.

    FLS 2018 Platinum Sponsors

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  • NFIP Extended Until March 23

    February 13, 2018

    With the signing of the budget deal by President Donald Trump, the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) has been reauthorized until March 23. The NFIP has been reauthorized through stopgap measures since September. This is the fifth such stopgap extension.

    “While it is disappointing that the NFIP lapsed again, though this time only for a few overnight hours, we’re pleased with the extension to March 23,” said PIA National Vice President of Government Relations Jon Gentile in a statement. “Congress must use the time between now and then to move away from short-term measures and provide a long-term reauthorization of this program,”

    The NFIP originally expired on September 30, 2017, after its 5-year authorization ended. It was then extended until December 8th, then again until December 22nd, then extended again until January 19, and again until February 8.

    “The NFIP is a program that requires certainty. It is also in great need of reforms. PIA will continue our advocacy for a long-term reauthorization of the program that recognizes the essential role independent agents play in providing expert advice to consumers,” Gentile said.

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  • Administration?s Proposed Budget Cuts Crop Insurance

    February 13, 2018

    PIA is opposed to the steep cuts to crop insurance once again included in the Trump Administration proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2019, which was released Monday Feb. 12. PIA issued a statement.

    The Administration’s budget proposes a $26 billion cut to crop insurance over the next 10 years. The cuts come in the form of an adjusted gross income (AGI) limit for crop insurance of $500,000, a reduction in the average of premium discounts for farmers by 14 percentage points, and a reduction in subsidies to crop insurance companies by asking Congress to legislate a 12 percent cap for underwriting gains.

    The budget proposals run counter to remarks President Trump made to the American Farm Bureau’s annual convention on Jan. 8, when he expressed support for crop insurance premium subsidies in the upcoming Farm Bill.

    “We thought the president had come around to supporting crop insurance, but the Administration’s proposed budget tells a different story,” said Jon Gentile, Vice President of Government Relations for PIA National. “These proposed cuts would not only hurt farmers and the agriculture community, but also would harm the independent insurance agents who work diligently to sell and service crop insurance policies on behalf of the Federal Crop Insurance Program.”

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  • The National Underwriter/PIA 2018 Independent Agent Study Results

    February 5, 2018

     

    NU/PIA Survey Cover

    Results of the 2018 National Underwriter/PIA Independent Agent Study have just been released, in the February 2018 issue of the National Underwriter.

    In 2017, PIA National forged an alliance with the National Underwriter and Flaspöhler, part of NMG Consulting, to conduct the inaugural Independent Agent Study – a research project designed to annually take the pulse of independent Property & Casualty insurance agents throughout the U.S. and provide insight into the demographics, books of business and challenges they face. Agents also reveal their most highly rated carrier partners.

    The expanded questionnaire — crafted by Flaspöhler, P&C carriers, PIA and NU — is distributed to NU’s proprietary lists of independent agents nationwide as well as PIA’s national membership (in return for the exclusive right to publish highlights of the study findings), resulting in the most reliable and scientifically sound sample in the history of this study.

    The 2018 study is a follow-up to 2017’s highly successful survey.

    In the coming months, PIA will also report the results of a separate set of questions that were asked only of PIA members who participated in the overall survey. These questions are PIA-specific and are proprietary to PIA.

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  • Results of the 2018 National Underwriter/PIA Independent Agent Survey

    February 2, 2018

    Click here to enlarge survey results.

     

    Click here to read the February issue of NU.

    NU/PIA Survey Cover

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  • Will Your Clients Be Prepared in an Emergency?

    January 30, 2018

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    Being prepared for an emergency means having emergency kits ready to go! The PIA Branding Program has released a new consumer-friendly issue paper covering emergency preparedness tips for your clients.

    This one-page paper features key tips your clients should consider if they run into an emergency that Mother Nature may bring. Each paper is available in multiple formats (1) ready-to-send with PIA logo and branding, (2) customizable so that it can be personalized by PIA members with their photo/logo and contact information, and (3) an infographic for social media. Social media copy is also provided for each paper.

    Log on here and download yours! Start sharing this content with your clients today or utilize the text on your agency's website, email, or blog.

    The PIA Branding Program provides a collection of free advertising and marketing materials PIA members can customize and use in their local market and beyond.

     

    Funding for the PIA Branding Program is provided in part by PIA’s Pinnacle Partners: Bankers Insurance Group, Encompass Insurance, Erie Insurance, Nationwide Independent, Progressive Insurance, State Auto Insurance Companies, The Motorists Insurance Group, and Wright Flood.

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  • Three-Day Government Shutdown, Three Week Reprieve

    January 24, 2018

    The three-day federal government shutdown ended with Monday’s compromise in Congress extending funding until February 8.

    On Monday January 22, the Senate agreed 81-18 to end debate, approving a temporary funding plan through Feb. 8—the culmination of days of deal making that unfolded as both parties traded blame for the government closure that began at 12:01 a.m. Saturday. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said he and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had “come to an arrangement.” Later Monday, the House passed the continuing resolution 266-159, and President Trump signed it. PIA issued a statement.

    This leaves almost three weeks for the parties to resolve deep differences on the issue of immigration, the major stumbling block that led to the three-day shutdown.

    The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) did go into technical shutdown during the three days, but it has been reauthorized until February 8. During the three-day shutdown, FEMA had requested that agents and other industry professionals begin implementing its guidance.

    A government shutdown would not have affected payment of flood insurance claims, and the insurance that people have would remain in effect. Where the effect of a shutdown is felt is with real estate closings, where lenders require flood insurance. The National Association of Realtors estimated in a 2011 study that the inability to write new policies affected 1,332 homes sale closings per day, or roughly 40,000 per month. The association derived the estimate from a 33-day period during the height of summer home sales in 2010 when the NFIP had not been reauthorized.

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  • Are You Prepared for Ice Jam Flooding?

    January 24, 2018

    As part of PIA’s ongoing partnership with The Hartford’s flood insurance program, we are proud to provide PIA members with the latest Flood Agent eNewsletter produced by The Hartford for its flood insurance agents. This month’s contents address important facts about ice jam flooding, the NFIP reauthorization update, and claim capabilities on FloodPro.

    In addition to The Hartford’s eNewsletters, PIA members visiting PIA’s Flood Insurance Marketing Support Center can download flyers to help their personal lines and commercial lines clients prepare for floods, deal with the aftermath of flooding, and how to prepare for a visit by an adjuster.

    PIA thanks The Hartford for making these excellent materials available to all PIA members, regardless of their participation in PIA’s flood insurance program with The Hartford.

    PIA members who want to earn great flood insurance commissions while working with a top-flight Write-Your-Own flood insurance company should consider the PIA/Hartford flood insurance program. To learn more visit www.pianet.com/hartfordfloodinsurance or contact Joseph M. Surowiecki, Jr. of The Hartford at 860-547-5006 or joseph.surowiecki@thehartford.com.

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