Is employer-sponsored insurance really a good deal for workers?

In a great historical irony, the evident faults of employer-sponsored insurance are helping fuel a new appetite for Medicare-for-all, a single-payer system where everybody gets health coverage from the government. But the work-based system, for all its flaws, could also be the biggest barrier to enacting single-payer. Shifting 160 million people from the coverage they currently get through their jobs to a new government plan is a lot of disruption — and disruption, especially in health care, has historically made a lot of Americans nervous.

Spotlight

Promutuel Assurance

Promutuel Assurance is one of the largest property and casualty insurers in Quebec. Recognized for its financial strength, high quality products and excellent customer service, it has 1935 employees serving more than 630,000 policyholders. Promutuel Assurance's mission is to promote and offer insurance products that meet the expectations of its insured members. In this respect, it provides a personalized service of quality and encourages the mutual values ​​that guide its actions for 166 years.

OTHER ARTICLES
Insurance Technology

How Are Insurance Firms Using Artificial Intelligence (AI)?

Article | July 20, 2022

In the insurance industry, artificial intelligence (AI) has become a buzzword. Nonetheless, despite the fact that we are still in the early stages of AI implementation, the industry has made significant progress. The Need for AI in Insurance Insurance is a long-established and highly regulated industry. Perhaps as a result, insurance companies have been slower to adopt technological change than other industries. Insurance is still dominated by manual, paper-based processes that are time-consuming and necessitate human intervention. Even today, customers must deal with time-consuming paperwork and bureaucracy when filing a claim or enrolling in a new insurance policy. Customers may also pay more for insurance if policies are not tailored to their specific needs. Insurance is not always a pleasant customer experience in an age when most of our daily activities are online, digitized, and convenient. Having said that, we are beginning to see a global push by insurance companies to enhance their technological capabilities in order to do business faster, cheaper, and more securely. There have been several notable examples of insurers investing heavily in Artificial Intelligence solutions in recent years. If AI technology is fully applied to the insurance industry, McKinsey estimates a potential annual value of up to $1.1 trillion. How are insurers implementing AI? There are numerous examples of insurers around the world using AI to improve both their bottom line and the customer experience. There are also a slew of start-ups offering AI solutions to insurers and customers. I'll discuss a few interesting cases here. The Future of Artificial Intelligence in Insurance AI has the potential to transform customers' insurance experiences from frustrating and bureaucratic to quick, on-demand, and more affordable. Customized insurance products will attract more customers at lower costs. If insurers apply AI technology to the mountain of data at their disposal, we will soon see more flexible insurance, such as on-demand pay-as-you-go insurance and premiums that adjust automatically in response to accidents, customer health, and so on. Insurance will become more personalized as insurers use AI technology to better understand what their customers require. By accelerating workflows, insurers will be able to save money. They will also discover new revenue streams as artificial intelligence-driven analysis uncovers new business and cross-selling opportunities.

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Insurance Technology

5 Things Contractors Can Do About Insurance During Covid-19

Article | August 9, 2022

With the major impact of the COVID-19 outbreak, contractors appreciate the need for insurance coverage even more. You may be safely covered by Force Majeure and pandemic clauses in your policies. However, you may still be wondering how to deal with the associated costs related to the COVID-19 outbreak risks. In this article, let’s look at some of the steps you can take to handle your insurance position during the pandemic.

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Core Insurance, Risk Management

The Age of Sustainable Fixed-Income Investing Has Arrived

Article | September 22, 2022

Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) considerations have increasingly entered the mainstream of investment discussions, both through routine incorporation into traditional investment processes and through distinct sustainable or impact investing styles. Recent and current global conditions, such as extreme weather events, the inequitable effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, rising distrust of government institutions, and geopolitical challenges to a rules-based world order, have accelerated this trend, emphasizing the direct relevance of ESG and sustainability to understanding long-term market risks and opportunities. Until recently, equity investors were more concerned with ESG and sustainability than their fixed-income counterparts. That is, however, beginning to change, and at a rapid pace. ESG and sustainability have gained significant traction among bond investors, particularly since the implementation of COVID-19, and are now widely regarded as essential components of fixed income investing. For example, global sustainable debt issuance reached a new high of over US$1.6 trillion in 2021 and is expected to rise further in the coming years. Notably, we believe that ESG integration and sustainable fixed-income investing require a very deliberate, thoughtful approach — one that varies significantly from one fixed-income sector to the next. ESG and sustainability: At a high level, researchers believe that increased awareness of ESG and sustainability benefits global markets in two ways: 1. ESG integration allows market participants to think more holistically about the types of financially material risks and opportunities — such as physical, reputational, and (geo)political — that should ideally be reflected in asset valuations and taken into account during the routine portfolio construction and management process. 2. Furthermore, the conversation about sustainable investing is encouraging more market participants to look beyond narrow, issuer-specific investment thesis to consider how market participants' behaviors affect the broader systems and structures (e.g., climate stability, institutional strength) whose long-term viability is critical for the long-term health of economies and markets. We, like many others, believe that a stable global climate, clean air and water for all, adherence to the rule of law, strong institutions with broad public legitimacy, and broad-based access to economic opportunity are valuable public goods from which market participants would benefit collectively over time. As a result, a central goal of sustainable investing is to assist markets in evolving toward rewarding participants for exercising responsible stewardship of these public goods, which are critical to pursuing favorable long-term outcomes for the real people who are the ultimate beneficiaries of markets. This framing of sustainability highlights why fixed income is so important in moving global markets and economies in a more sustainable direction.

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Core Insurance, Risk Management

5 Essential Features of Policy Management Tools

Article | September 22, 2022

The worldwide marketplace is undergoing a host of structural changes and insurance companies are consistently working to capitalize on them. The past few years posed a number of new challenges. For an industry whose primary promise is to “be there when customers need us,” delivering top-notch timely services is not only crucial for business continuity but the most urgent goal. Inspiring trust through every process of the policy lifecycle is a significant factor for insurers to be able to maintain goodwill in the market. Recent pressures proved that the industry needs a systemic metamorphosis and digital solutions may be able to provide them. This is also why many industries are jumping on the bandwagon of digital transformation and insurance is no different. With a barrage of new technologies, solutions and software, it has become easier to automate processes and eliminate inefficiencies that hamper day-to-day-operations. One such area of transformation is insurance policy management. Forward-looking insurers today, can start by rethinking their policy management framework. The Importance of Automated Policy Management Simplifying all internal processes is a priority for many insurance providers worldwide. Much of the insurer’s business outcome hinges on streamlined workflows, seamless document management and effective use of different tools. In policy management, mitigating risk is another significant aspect that impacts the bottom line. Today, insurers are heavily investing in new technologies like artificial intelligence and machine learning, robotic process automation, data analytics and much more. Policy management entails the comprehensive process of administering policies. From pre-sale to renewal to claims, at every stage of the policy lifecycle, insurers must ensure a smooth process at every stage. Some of the stages of policy management that can be enhanced by using automated policy management tools which include: Member services Loss mitigation Risk assessment Claims processing Policy issuance Policy renewal Policy cancellation Compliance It’s clear that insurance policy administration system (pas) encompasses all the main business processes of an insurance company and the importance of policy management is enough to invest in high-quality solutions that span the policy lifecycle. The Must-Haves of Policy Management Software A smart insurance policy management simplifies the process for both the insurer and the insured. For insurers, it should be able to optimize resources and save time in administering policies. For example, life insurance policy management system can help a provider scale their operation, introduce flexibility and administrative simplicity. Here are the components of a policy management solution that is a must-have for every insurance provider. For the insured, the solution can help organizations not only provide a smooth experience Policy Issuance, Update and Cancellation The most significant must have that an effective policy management solution should have, is the ability to digitalize every aspect of policy administration. This includes being able to generate documentation, centralize records and oversee all operations across the policy lifecycle. For instance, everything should be synced so that any updates are made universally across all documents. This eliminates doing manual changes to all the records. In addition, with technologies like robotic process automation (RPA), repetitive tasks can be automated and reduce the time it takes to process documentation. Underwriting Underwriting is a process where individuals or firms take financial risk for a fee. In insurance, underwriters are responsible for evaluating the degree of risk to the insurer’s business. It is in essence a manual process that comprises extensive research and assessment of the prospective policy holder. For instance, medical underwriting consisted of ascertaining the charges to levy or even whether to provider coverage to them based on an applicant’s health condition. Even though underwriting is a time-consuming process, it doesn’t have to be tedious. Underwriters need to access data that is spread across a range of different platforms and sources. Automated policy management enables organizations to accelerate the process of data collection and collation. This is why, automation in underwriting functionalities is one of the most important features of a policy management software that is a must-have. Estimates and Quotes Holistic policy management tools are incomplete without quote estimate capabilities. Quoting allows insurers to generate leads. With automated quoting features, insurers can provide estimates without having to directly contact customers, saving time and money in cold calling. In addition, it helps insurers to gather the information they need to then target their leads and tailor solutions that meet consumer expectations. Quality policy management systems include these capabilities. They work by letting customer input their information and receive a quote estimate based on it. For insurers, in addition to providing leads, it lets them engage customers from the start itself. Policy Renewal Renewals is a critical stage in the policy lifecycle. Overseeing renewals and reducing customer churn is something every insurer must prioritize. Renewals handling amplifies the importance of policy management software that offer renewals management tools. Renewals management features allow insurers to alert policy holders about the ending of their coverage and provides a timely reminder to renew it. Since renewals management tools offer ready information for insurers to access, customers need to update fewer fields. It not only reduces customer churn but contributes to an easy, fast, and customer-friendly process. Claims Processing Claims processing is when an insurer reviews a claim process to verify and authenticate the claim made by the policy holder. As a core business process, claims management and processing needs intelligent systemization. Insurance policy management tools that integrate claims processing will enable insurers to automate the settlement process. Modern policy management tools sync different systems so insurers have a centralized database and can simplify tasks like assigning claims, detecting fraud, record payments issued and automatically generate reports. Regulations and Compliance Insurance is a heavily regulated industry and insurers must keep up with the many compliance and location-specific regulations to avoid hefty fines. Regulatory policies are also subject to change and can often realign processes to protect consumers. This may sometimes cause insurers financially. However, complying with new regulations is a business necessity and policy compliance management solutions help immensely. Insurers must be able to monitor any changes in global and local policies or keep an eye out for announcements regarding the change in rates or regulations. Many insurers have a team to do this but maintaining a team is costly and causes operational complexities. Modern policy management tools offer the automation capabilities that eliminate the need for extensive overhaul or insurers to keep up with new regulations. These policy compliance management tools help in detecting breach and minimizing it. They also enable better resource allocation as teams no longer need to monitor new and upcoming regulations and plan for implementing the change. Customer Support Customer support is one of the most critical aspects of policy management. Beyond software and applications, being able to meet your customers’ demands, address their concerns throughout the customer lifecycle is vital in order to meet business objectives on time. With digitalization transcending platforms and devices, policy management tools today need to be able to keep up to meet customer demands. This is why mobile-ready policy management solutions are a must. They allow insurers to respond to customers quickly and keep channels of communication open and flowing. In addition, features like quoting estimates and claims processing that accelerate policy administration and management in a streamlined manner are bound to keep customers happy and reduce churn. Some policy management tools come with marketing automation capabilities as well as a CRM that lets insurers deliver a great experience right from buying decision to ongoing support. Conclusion There is no denying that digitalization is the future and insurers need to be ready to adapt to new challenges and evolving demands from consumers. Policy management tools not only enable insurers to overhaul their core process but simplify it and eliminate operational inefficiencies. The importance of policy management cannot be understated. Age-old challenges and bottlenecks of managing millions of policies can be mitigated with comprehensive policy management solutions. The above components are the most critical process your organization should look to simplify. These essential features ensure you are able to optimize resources, improve operational efficiencies, streamline processes and translate all these into enhanced customer experiences. Frequently Asked Questions How does insurance policy management differ from other policy management tools? Insurance policy management is a specialized solution that caters to insurance companies and enables them to manage renewals, claims, underwriting and all other processes associated with managing an insurance policy for their customers. Other policy management tools help organizations frame policies and management internal policy documents. What is an insurance policy lifecycle? An insurance policy lifecycle starts with generating a quote for the customer, onboarding the customer’s application, and finally setting the payment of premiums and renewals. When a policyholder claims insurance, the insurer has to process the claim, verify its authenticity then accept the claim fully or partially or reject it. What are the ways the insured can choose to pay for the insurance policy? The insured can either pay a lump sum amount or choose to pay monthly, yearly or quarterly. These payments are called premiums and are calculated based on certain condition set by the insurer.

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Spotlight

Promutuel Assurance

Promutuel Assurance is one of the largest property and casualty insurers in Quebec. Recognized for its financial strength, high quality products and excellent customer service, it has 1935 employees serving more than 630,000 policyholders. Promutuel Assurance's mission is to promote and offer insurance products that meet the expectations of its insured members. In this respect, it provides a personalized service of quality and encourages the mutual values ​​that guide its actions for 166 years.

Related News

Risk Management

Nearmap Announces Agreement to Acquire Betterview, a Complementary Property Intelligence and Risk Management Platform

Nearmap | December 07, 2023

Nearmap, one of the world's largest location intelligence and aerial imagery solutions providers, has signed an agreement to acquire Betterview, a leading property intelligence and risk management platform in the insurance industry. Founded in Australia in 2007, Nearmap expanded operations into the U.S. in 2014 to help companies better visualize the truth on the ground to make more informed business decisions. Today's announcement marks a significant milestone in the advancement of the Nearmap global growth strategy. This will reinforce the company's position as a leading source of imagery intelligence, data and solutions, and expand and complement its expertise and capabilities for insurance customers and partners. "The Nearmap acquisition of Betterview is transformative for the industry," said Andy Watt, CEO of Nearmap. Integrating the Betterview platform and AI solutions into the Nearmap technology stack will enable better visualization of the truth on the ground with a richer, more powerful set of AI capabilities that combine the best of both companies. This is a significant milestone in our ongoing efforts to innovate solutions for insurance carriers, and expand our presence within the property and casualty space. [Source -PR Newswire] Betterview is an established and trusted source of property intelligence and risk management for the insurance industry, applying artificial intelligence and computer vision to help identify and mitigate property risk, improve and automate underwriting and inspection workflows, and provide a more productive, seamless customer experience. "Combining the offerings of two best-in-class providers will deliver greater impact for insurers," said Betterview Co-Founder and CEO David Lyman. "The acquisition of Betterview by Nearmap will increase access to premium imagery and cutting-edge, scalable property intelligence solutions for the insurance industry." "We are optimistic about the outcomes this acquisition will bring to our customers, the potential for developing even greater products together, and the impact it will have on the future of the insurance industry," said Betterview Co-Founder and COO Dave Tobias. Nearmap and Betterview will harness the power of the leading image intelligence and property risk-management technology solutions — including a historical archive for change analysis, comprehensive post-catastrophe imagery, and AI attributes — to provide customers and partners with greater certainty and clarity, through More efficient development of insurance solutions and capabilities Faster and more accurate underwriting, property condition identification, and overall mitigation of risk Enhanced visualization and interpretation of over 100 AI-powered property attributes Deeper analytics, with more recency, and regularity through insights easily accessible within a browser, via API or business intelligence tools, or seamlessly integrated with existing underwriting or claims core systems From imagery to insights to answers, this acquisition aligns with the Nearmap long-term global vision to be the source of truth that shapes our livable world. Completion of the acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions. The financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed. Jefferies served as exclusive financial advisor to Betterview. About Nearmap Nearmap provides easy, instant access to high-resolution aerial imagery, city-scale 3D content, AI data sets, and geospatial tools. Using its own patented camera systems and processing software, Nearmap captures wide-scale urban areas in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand several times each year, making current content instantly available in the cloud via web app or API integration. Every day, Nearmap helps thousands of users conduct virtual site visits for deep, data-driven insights—enabling informed decisions, streamlined operations, and better financial performance. Founded in Australia in 2007, Nearmap is one of the largest aerial survey companies in the world. About Betterview Betterview is the Property Intelligence & Risk Management Solution the insurance industry depends on to identify and mitigate property risk, improve underwriting and inspection efficiency, and build a more transparent customer experience. Applying Artificial Intelligence (AI) and computer vision to aerial imagery and geospatial data, Betterview generates the most accurate property information insurers trust to automate pricing, underwriting, and renewals while focusing strategic action on critical properties, helping transform property insurance from Repair and Replace to Predict and Prevent.

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Core Insurance

NAIC Members Approve Model Bulletin on Use of AI by Insurers

NAIC | December 06, 2023

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Membership voted to adopt the Model Bulletin on the Use of Artificial Intelligence Systems by Insurers during the 2023 Fall National Meeting. The bulletin reflects the work of the NAIC Innovation, Cybersecurity, and Technology (H) Committee, chaired by Maryland Insurance Commissioner Kathleen A. Birrane. Michael Conway, Commissioner of the Colorado Division of Insurance, and Doug Ommen, Commissioner of the Iowa Insurance Division, are co-vice chairs of the committee. "This initiative represents a collaborative effort to set clear expectations for state Departments of Insurance regarding the utilization of AI by insurance companies, balancing the potential for innovation with the imperative to address unique risks," said Commissioner Birrane. As the insurance sector navigates the complexities of AI, the NAIC's Model Bulletin on the Use of Artificial Intelligence Systems by Insurers provides a robust foundation to safeguard consumers, promote fairness, and uphold the highest standards of integrity within the industry. [Source -PR Newswire] The H Committee, comprised of representatives from 15 states, began drafting the bulletin in 2023 with the goal of establishing comprehensive regulatory standards to ensure the responsible deployment of AI in the insurance industry. The bulletin addresses critical issues related to the usage of AI, such as potential inaccuracies, unfair biases leading to discrimination, and data vulnerabilities. While not a model law or regulation, the AI model bulletin serves as a guiding document, fostering uniformity among state insurance regulators regarding expectations for insurance carriers deploying AI. The bulletin comprises four key sections, each addressing crucial aspects of AI usage by insurers. It emphasizes the importance of responsible governance, risk management policies, and procedures to ensure fair and accurate outcomes for consumers. The bulletin reminds insurance carriers that decisions impacting consumers that are made or supported by advanced analytical and computational technologies, including AI, must comply with all applicable insurance laws and regulations, including unfair trade practices. The bulletin also sets forth state insurance regulators' expectations on how insurers should govern the use of such technologies by or on behalf of the insurer to make or support such decisions, including the creation and implementation of a written AIS Program, commensurate with an assessment of the risk in accordance with the guidelines established by the NAIC's 2020 Principles of Artificial Intelligence, and to ensure that decisions impacting consumers made or supported by AI are accurate and do not violate unfair trade practice laws or other applicable legal standards. The bulletin also advises insurers of documentation that a state Department of Insurance may request during an investigation or examination. The initial draft was presented to the working group on June 29, 2023, and subsequently exposed for public comment periods, allowing for extensive input from industry stakeholders, consumers, and legislators. The process involved two exposure periods, with the first public comment period ending on Sept. 5, 2023, and the second ending on Nov. 6, 2023. The review process also included in-person comments during the 2023 Summer National Meeting in Seattle, WA, and during the 2023 Fall National Meeting in Orlando, FL. Significant updates were made to the model bulletin based on the feedback received. These updates addressed concerns raised during the review process, including a shift in focus toward outcomes, revisions to key definitions aligned with National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) standards, and updates to language on third-party contracting and testing and validation protocols. Commissioner Birrane expressed gratitude for the collaborative efforts of the H Committee, drafting groups, and all stakeholders involved. The completion and adoption of the model bulletin mark a significant step forward in adapting regulatory frameworks to the evolving landscape of AI in the insurance industry. About the National Association of Insurance Commissioners As part of our state-based system of insurance regulation in the United States, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) provides expertise, data, and analysis for insurance commissioners to effectively regulate the industry and protect consumers. The U.S. standard-setting organization is governed by the chief insurance regulators from the 50 states, the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories. Through the NAIC, state insurance regulators establish standards and best practices, conduct peer reviews, and coordinate regulatory oversight. NAIC staff supports these efforts and represents the collective views of state regulators domestically and internationally.

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Insurance Technology

Integrity and Hemati Insurance Agency Join Forces to Strengthen Expansive Services for Agents

Integrity Marketing Group, LLC | December 05, 2023

Integrity Marketing Group, LLC a leading distributor of life and health insurance, and provider of wealth management and retirement planning solutions, today announced it has partnered with Hemati Insurance Agency, an independent marketing organization based in Austin, Texas, and led by Eric Hemati. Financial details of the partnership were not disclosed. "Eric comes to Integrity with two decades of experience and a deep understanding of this business, but he knew there would be more opportunities for growth through our partnership — he wanted to help even more people and offer the strongest support and products possible to his agents," explained Bryan W. Adams, Co-Founder and CEO of Integrity. "We created Integrity precisely to give leaders, like Eric, the meaningful foundation and cutting-edge resources they need to take an agency to the next level. Now that Hemati Insurance Agency is partnered with Integrity, it can tap into an amazing network of expertise and experience. Our partners are positioned to help one another expand and thrive, which stems from our philosophy that a rising tide lifts all boats. I can't wait to see the 'Integrity Effect' of powerful growth make an impact on Hemati Insurance Agency — this business will be one to watch!" After spending several years in the field, Hemati brought a valuable agent perspective when founding Hemati Insurance Agency in 2003. The company provides clients across the country with life and health insurance products. In order to help protect more families, Hemati focuses on optimizing the agent experience by constantly expanding its support, mentorship and technology offerings. This commitment led to a partnership with Integrity. "Integrity is a force multiplier! Its vision of bringing together world-class services, technology and leaders to elevate agents' potential is an approach I resonated with immediately," shared Eric Hemati, Principal of Hemati Insurance Agency. Integrity has also created the dream team of partners in the insurance space — these are the leading players in the industry who have founded some of the country's most successful agencies. The opportunity to tap into their wisdom and collective experience is a game-changer for any entrepreneur. My agents are thrilled to utilize Integrity's best-in-class products, especially LeadCENTER and MedicareCENTER, which take the guesswork out of prospecting and allow us to help more people faster and more efficiently. This partnership is a major milestone for our business and significantly accelerates our growth. With Integrity's support, our future looks exceptionally promising. [Source -PR Newswire] By developing thoughtful solutions and best-in-class products, Integrity offers resources that make an agent's job more effective and fulfilling. Its end-to-end insurtech platform offers proprietary access to groundbreaking products such as Ask Integrity, a revolutionary AI-powered and voice-activated customer relationship management technology, and LeadCENTER, an on-demand platform which instantly connects qualified leads anywhere in the country with agents ready to serve. Integrity partners receive additional world-class resources and support, including strategic leadership guidance, richly insightful data and analytics, and ongoing product innovation to keep agents at the forefront of industry developments. Integrity empowers agents to reach more families through its holistic approach to life, health and wealth solutions. The Integrity partner network, comprised of many of the country's leading insurance and financial services companies, recognizes the growing need for cross-industry initiatives to offer comprehensive planning and services to every consumer. This prestigious group is collaborating on best practices and innovations that benefit all stakeholders. Their ingenuity and commitment help more Americans plan for the good days ahead. About Integrity Integrity, headquartered in Dallas, Texas, is a leading distributor of life and health insurance, and provider of innovative solutions for wealth management and retirement planning. Through its broad partner network of agents and advisors, Integrity helps millions of Americans protect their life, health and wealth with a commitment to meet them wherever they are — in person, over the phone and online. Integrity's proprietary, cutting-edge technology helps expand the insurance and financial planning experience for all stakeholders using an omnichannel approach. In addition, Integrity develops products with carrier partners and markets them compliantly through its nationwide distribution network. Providing best-in-class service to our clients and consumers is at the center of Integrity's holistic approach to life, health and wealth protection. The company and its partners focus on helping families and individuals prepare for the good days ahead, so they can make the most of what life brings. About Hemati Insurance Agency Hemati Insurance Agency has rapidly become a key and influential player in the insurance industry. The Austin, Texas-based agency focuses on empowering its agents, thereby ensuring the best possible service for its clients. Hemati Insurance Agency consistently provides in-depth training, resources and support designed to help its team of hundreds of agents work more efficiently and effectively. It is also committed to delivering a wide range of personalized solutions that help protect more than 20,000 American families annually.

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Risk Management

Nearmap Announces Agreement to Acquire Betterview, a Complementary Property Intelligence and Risk Management Platform

Nearmap | December 07, 2023

Nearmap, one of the world's largest location intelligence and aerial imagery solutions providers, has signed an agreement to acquire Betterview, a leading property intelligence and risk management platform in the insurance industry. Founded in Australia in 2007, Nearmap expanded operations into the U.S. in 2014 to help companies better visualize the truth on the ground to make more informed business decisions. Today's announcement marks a significant milestone in the advancement of the Nearmap global growth strategy. This will reinforce the company's position as a leading source of imagery intelligence, data and solutions, and expand and complement its expertise and capabilities for insurance customers and partners. "The Nearmap acquisition of Betterview is transformative for the industry," said Andy Watt, CEO of Nearmap. Integrating the Betterview platform and AI solutions into the Nearmap technology stack will enable better visualization of the truth on the ground with a richer, more powerful set of AI capabilities that combine the best of both companies. This is a significant milestone in our ongoing efforts to innovate solutions for insurance carriers, and expand our presence within the property and casualty space. [Source -PR Newswire] Betterview is an established and trusted source of property intelligence and risk management for the insurance industry, applying artificial intelligence and computer vision to help identify and mitigate property risk, improve and automate underwriting and inspection workflows, and provide a more productive, seamless customer experience. "Combining the offerings of two best-in-class providers will deliver greater impact for insurers," said Betterview Co-Founder and CEO David Lyman. "The acquisition of Betterview by Nearmap will increase access to premium imagery and cutting-edge, scalable property intelligence solutions for the insurance industry." "We are optimistic about the outcomes this acquisition will bring to our customers, the potential for developing even greater products together, and the impact it will have on the future of the insurance industry," said Betterview Co-Founder and COO Dave Tobias. Nearmap and Betterview will harness the power of the leading image intelligence and property risk-management technology solutions — including a historical archive for change analysis, comprehensive post-catastrophe imagery, and AI attributes — to provide customers and partners with greater certainty and clarity, through More efficient development of insurance solutions and capabilities Faster and more accurate underwriting, property condition identification, and overall mitigation of risk Enhanced visualization and interpretation of over 100 AI-powered property attributes Deeper analytics, with more recency, and regularity through insights easily accessible within a browser, via API or business intelligence tools, or seamlessly integrated with existing underwriting or claims core systems From imagery to insights to answers, this acquisition aligns with the Nearmap long-term global vision to be the source of truth that shapes our livable world. Completion of the acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions. The financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed. Jefferies served as exclusive financial advisor to Betterview. About Nearmap Nearmap provides easy, instant access to high-resolution aerial imagery, city-scale 3D content, AI data sets, and geospatial tools. Using its own patented camera systems and processing software, Nearmap captures wide-scale urban areas in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand several times each year, making current content instantly available in the cloud via web app or API integration. Every day, Nearmap helps thousands of users conduct virtual site visits for deep, data-driven insights—enabling informed decisions, streamlined operations, and better financial performance. Founded in Australia in 2007, Nearmap is one of the largest aerial survey companies in the world. About Betterview Betterview is the Property Intelligence & Risk Management Solution the insurance industry depends on to identify and mitigate property risk, improve underwriting and inspection efficiency, and build a more transparent customer experience. Applying Artificial Intelligence (AI) and computer vision to aerial imagery and geospatial data, Betterview generates the most accurate property information insurers trust to automate pricing, underwriting, and renewals while focusing strategic action on critical properties, helping transform property insurance from Repair and Replace to Predict and Prevent.

Read More

Core Insurance

NAIC Members Approve Model Bulletin on Use of AI by Insurers

NAIC | December 06, 2023

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Membership voted to adopt the Model Bulletin on the Use of Artificial Intelligence Systems by Insurers during the 2023 Fall National Meeting. The bulletin reflects the work of the NAIC Innovation, Cybersecurity, and Technology (H) Committee, chaired by Maryland Insurance Commissioner Kathleen A. Birrane. Michael Conway, Commissioner of the Colorado Division of Insurance, and Doug Ommen, Commissioner of the Iowa Insurance Division, are co-vice chairs of the committee. "This initiative represents a collaborative effort to set clear expectations for state Departments of Insurance regarding the utilization of AI by insurance companies, balancing the potential for innovation with the imperative to address unique risks," said Commissioner Birrane. As the insurance sector navigates the complexities of AI, the NAIC's Model Bulletin on the Use of Artificial Intelligence Systems by Insurers provides a robust foundation to safeguard consumers, promote fairness, and uphold the highest standards of integrity within the industry. [Source -PR Newswire] The H Committee, comprised of representatives from 15 states, began drafting the bulletin in 2023 with the goal of establishing comprehensive regulatory standards to ensure the responsible deployment of AI in the insurance industry. The bulletin addresses critical issues related to the usage of AI, such as potential inaccuracies, unfair biases leading to discrimination, and data vulnerabilities. While not a model law or regulation, the AI model bulletin serves as a guiding document, fostering uniformity among state insurance regulators regarding expectations for insurance carriers deploying AI. The bulletin comprises four key sections, each addressing crucial aspects of AI usage by insurers. It emphasizes the importance of responsible governance, risk management policies, and procedures to ensure fair and accurate outcomes for consumers. The bulletin reminds insurance carriers that decisions impacting consumers that are made or supported by advanced analytical and computational technologies, including AI, must comply with all applicable insurance laws and regulations, including unfair trade practices. The bulletin also sets forth state insurance regulators' expectations on how insurers should govern the use of such technologies by or on behalf of the insurer to make or support such decisions, including the creation and implementation of a written AIS Program, commensurate with an assessment of the risk in accordance with the guidelines established by the NAIC's 2020 Principles of Artificial Intelligence, and to ensure that decisions impacting consumers made or supported by AI are accurate and do not violate unfair trade practice laws or other applicable legal standards. The bulletin also advises insurers of documentation that a state Department of Insurance may request during an investigation or examination. The initial draft was presented to the working group on June 29, 2023, and subsequently exposed for public comment periods, allowing for extensive input from industry stakeholders, consumers, and legislators. The process involved two exposure periods, with the first public comment period ending on Sept. 5, 2023, and the second ending on Nov. 6, 2023. The review process also included in-person comments during the 2023 Summer National Meeting in Seattle, WA, and during the 2023 Fall National Meeting in Orlando, FL. Significant updates were made to the model bulletin based on the feedback received. These updates addressed concerns raised during the review process, including a shift in focus toward outcomes, revisions to key definitions aligned with National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) standards, and updates to language on third-party contracting and testing and validation protocols. Commissioner Birrane expressed gratitude for the collaborative efforts of the H Committee, drafting groups, and all stakeholders involved. The completion and adoption of the model bulletin mark a significant step forward in adapting regulatory frameworks to the evolving landscape of AI in the insurance industry. About the National Association of Insurance Commissioners As part of our state-based system of insurance regulation in the United States, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) provides expertise, data, and analysis for insurance commissioners to effectively regulate the industry and protect consumers. The U.S. standard-setting organization is governed by the chief insurance regulators from the 50 states, the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories. Through the NAIC, state insurance regulators establish standards and best practices, conduct peer reviews, and coordinate regulatory oversight. NAIC staff supports these efforts and represents the collective views of state regulators domestically and internationally.

Read More

Insurance Technology

Integrity and Hemati Insurance Agency Join Forces to Strengthen Expansive Services for Agents

Integrity Marketing Group, LLC | December 05, 2023

Integrity Marketing Group, LLC a leading distributor of life and health insurance, and provider of wealth management and retirement planning solutions, today announced it has partnered with Hemati Insurance Agency, an independent marketing organization based in Austin, Texas, and led by Eric Hemati. Financial details of the partnership were not disclosed. "Eric comes to Integrity with two decades of experience and a deep understanding of this business, but he knew there would be more opportunities for growth through our partnership — he wanted to help even more people and offer the strongest support and products possible to his agents," explained Bryan W. Adams, Co-Founder and CEO of Integrity. "We created Integrity precisely to give leaders, like Eric, the meaningful foundation and cutting-edge resources they need to take an agency to the next level. Now that Hemati Insurance Agency is partnered with Integrity, it can tap into an amazing network of expertise and experience. Our partners are positioned to help one another expand and thrive, which stems from our philosophy that a rising tide lifts all boats. I can't wait to see the 'Integrity Effect' of powerful growth make an impact on Hemati Insurance Agency — this business will be one to watch!" After spending several years in the field, Hemati brought a valuable agent perspective when founding Hemati Insurance Agency in 2003. The company provides clients across the country with life and health insurance products. In order to help protect more families, Hemati focuses on optimizing the agent experience by constantly expanding its support, mentorship and technology offerings. This commitment led to a partnership with Integrity. "Integrity is a force multiplier! Its vision of bringing together world-class services, technology and leaders to elevate agents' potential is an approach I resonated with immediately," shared Eric Hemati, Principal of Hemati Insurance Agency. Integrity has also created the dream team of partners in the insurance space — these are the leading players in the industry who have founded some of the country's most successful agencies. The opportunity to tap into their wisdom and collective experience is a game-changer for any entrepreneur. My agents are thrilled to utilize Integrity's best-in-class products, especially LeadCENTER and MedicareCENTER, which take the guesswork out of prospecting and allow us to help more people faster and more efficiently. This partnership is a major milestone for our business and significantly accelerates our growth. With Integrity's support, our future looks exceptionally promising. [Source -PR Newswire] By developing thoughtful solutions and best-in-class products, Integrity offers resources that make an agent's job more effective and fulfilling. Its end-to-end insurtech platform offers proprietary access to groundbreaking products such as Ask Integrity, a revolutionary AI-powered and voice-activated customer relationship management technology, and LeadCENTER, an on-demand platform which instantly connects qualified leads anywhere in the country with agents ready to serve. Integrity partners receive additional world-class resources and support, including strategic leadership guidance, richly insightful data and analytics, and ongoing product innovation to keep agents at the forefront of industry developments. Integrity empowers agents to reach more families through its holistic approach to life, health and wealth solutions. The Integrity partner network, comprised of many of the country's leading insurance and financial services companies, recognizes the growing need for cross-industry initiatives to offer comprehensive planning and services to every consumer. This prestigious group is collaborating on best practices and innovations that benefit all stakeholders. Their ingenuity and commitment help more Americans plan for the good days ahead. About Integrity Integrity, headquartered in Dallas, Texas, is a leading distributor of life and health insurance, and provider of innovative solutions for wealth management and retirement planning. Through its broad partner network of agents and advisors, Integrity helps millions of Americans protect their life, health and wealth with a commitment to meet them wherever they are — in person, over the phone and online. Integrity's proprietary, cutting-edge technology helps expand the insurance and financial planning experience for all stakeholders using an omnichannel approach. In addition, Integrity develops products with carrier partners and markets them compliantly through its nationwide distribution network. Providing best-in-class service to our clients and consumers is at the center of Integrity's holistic approach to life, health and wealth protection. The company and its partners focus on helping families and individuals prepare for the good days ahead, so they can make the most of what life brings. About Hemati Insurance Agency Hemati Insurance Agency has rapidly become a key and influential player in the insurance industry. The Austin, Texas-based agency focuses on empowering its agents, thereby ensuring the best possible service for its clients. Hemati Insurance Agency consistently provides in-depth training, resources and support designed to help its team of hundreds of agents work more efficiently and effectively. It is also committed to delivering a wide range of personalized solutions that help protect more than 20,000 American families annually.

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