Call us Before you Send an Application!
Even if an application is required, call us before you fill it out to see if we can handle the risk first. If we cannot, we will tell you then and you won’t waste your time with unnecessary paperwork. If we can handle the risk, then we can tell you the specific information that will make pricing better or placement easier.
Policy Issued Within 24 Hours
As a managing general agent, JSA has bind authority with many of our carriers, which allows us to control the speed in which you receive policy documents. For our bind authority carriers, we do not have to wait on them to issue policies, we issue them ourselves, in Boone, NC (not overseas). For those which we control, we will get it issued, emailed and uploaded to the agency portal within 24 hours of binding.
In those instances where we do not issue the policy (about 10% of the total) we will send you a written binder within 24 hours of binding. You should never have to wonder if we bound what you requested. For those policies bound online, you will receive a binder via email within 15 minutes of binding.
People you Know, People you Trust
One of the things that bothers us about our industry today is that is seems like every other week we find ourselves working with a new underwriter at our companies and having to try to build a relationship all over again. We’re sure you get frustrated by the same thing with your companies and E&S Brokers. We are very pleased that 70% of our people have been here 5 years or more (some of us a lot more!).
JSA is Here to Stay
Long-term relationships and stability are very important to us. We think they are important to you the agent, as well. The financial position of JSA is obviously vital to us. Since we stand between you and the company, it is also vital to you. After all, you send your clients’ money to us and depend on us to pay the company.
There are many situations, particularly in the London market binding authorities, in which we pay the claims and recover our money from the company. Therefore, we must view our position as if we were the insurance company. Like every other corporation, our CPAs conduct an annual review; however, at our insistence, they review our figures monthly. The statement consistently made by our CPAs as a result of these reviews is:
The liquid assets maintained by JSA are more than sufficient to meet all existing known obligations. Adequate reserves are maintained for all payments to insurance companies. The conservative business philosophy of JSA over the years leads us to believe the reserves will continue to be maintained.
Our Underwriting Staff
We will put our Underwriting Staff up against anybody, anytime, anywhere! There are 30 of us (wow when this was first written there were only 5!). 15 of us do Transportation, 13 of us do the other Property & Casualty Lines, and 2 of us do Personal Lines.
A few of us have been doing this a long, long time…40 yrs plus. Some of us grew up on the company side before the bureaucracy of corporate life drove us to the point of insanity. Some of us actually worked in retail agencies before we learned there is far too much work involved in that occupation. One of us was an outside claims adjuster who got too old to climb up on roofs anymore (don’t tell her I said that).
The point is that between us we have pretty much been there and done that. We understand both of the groups that we are a bridge between…agents and companies.
We are especially proud of the education achievements of many of our staff members; 4 CPCU’s, 10 CIC’s, 2 ASLI, 2 CRM, 4 CISR, 1 ARM, 1 AIC and 11 who hold Insurance Degrees from Appalachian State or East Carolina University.
In short, we find that we actually have more experience and insurance education than our company underwriters. We generally know what we are trying to do and we are not ashamed to admit it when we don’t.
Who Pays for our Mistakes? We Do!
If we give you a firm price and the facts don’t change, that’s the price you pay! If we have made an error, it’s our problem, not yours. We have never, never, ever gone back to ask an Agent for more money because of our mistake.
Have we ever had to pay a company out of our pocket? Yep! The only time we come back to you is if the facts are different – more square footage, a change in payroll, receipts, values, etc.
We Might have the Edge
For many years we have consistently been among the top performers in the nation for our larger company partners. What does this have to do with you? Even though no self-respecting company would ever admit it, you know and we know that companies and Underwriters will do things for some agencies – those that support them and make them money – that they won’t do for others. That edge may be all we need to help you find the coverage and price you need.
Back to our Staff for a Minute
We are totally different personalities. People don’t do business with companies – they do business with people. You choose who to work with, we don’t choose for you. If you want a particular Underwriter, you will get that Underwriter. If you don’t care, neither do we… talk to the Underwriter who is free at the moment. We pretty much run the gamut from unbelievably handsome and drop dead gorgeous to looks like he already dropped dead. From nearly brilliant to dumb like a fox. From so laid back it’s hard to detect breathing to so hyper a paper bag is always handy in case of hyperventilation. The point is..we think you will find one of us who suits your style.
Size isn’t Everything – Is Bigger Better?
While our egos are probably as large as the next guy’s, we have not, and will not reach the point where we don’t want to mess with the small account. We will work just as hard to find you a market for a $500 policy as we will for a $10,000 policy. Just like everyone else, we like writing the big premiums, but in terms of total income, the small ones are more important and much more stable. Don’t hesitate to call us because you think something is too small.
Small Agencies are Big Business with us!
How about small agencies, small towns, premium volume commitments? We have never, and will never ask an Agent for a volume commitment; nor will we ever refuse to do business with an Agent because that Agent does not give us enough volume. You may only need us once a year, or you may need us twice a day. Either way, JSA will be here!
Delivering Our Product
Claims are why we are in business. While we think we’re in sales, it’s only because of claims that people buy what we sell. Finding the markets and prices you need, sending you timely binders and policies, and servicing your business are all important. But until your insured suffers a loss, we have not delivered our product. Because of this, we are very conscious of the need to provide you with excellent claim service. To this end we have a full-time Claims Manager. Her sole responsibility is to deliver our product. Just as with quotes, call us about claims. We will report to you every development in the handling of the claim as it progresses. We believe that communication which keeps the Agent out of the dark is the key to good claims service.
We Love Answering Questions
Are you fairly new to the business? Or do you have new, inexperienced staff members who are hesitant to call, afraid that they will not have all the information they need or be embarrassed by not knowing enough about what they are doing? Everyone has to start somewhere. We consider it a compliment of the highest order when someone calls us and says, “I don’t know what to do with this,” or “How do I handle this?” or simply “Will you help me?” We don’t always know the answers either, but we’ll try our best to find out. You have our number. Relax and give us a call.
No Money Down
We do not require money to bind. If you tell us to bind it, you are responsible for the premium. It’s as simple as that. We send you the invoice when we send you the policy or the binder. A few exceptions may apply with Direct Bill policies. Call JSA today to work with the pros…and not the hassles!
How we Handle Renewals
Renewals are vital to the success of every agency. We know that you have your own system for controlling renewals, but we sleep much better at night knowing we also have a control system to support yours.
Sixty to Ninety days prior to renewal we will send you a letter making you aware of the renewal and asking you for renewal information. We aim to get our renewal quotes out 30 days before the renewal expiration date. There are a few exceptions where we might be waiting on a required application or waiting on the company to send us a quote. With these we will get the quote out as soon as we can. If we don’t hear from you, you can count on hearing from us a day or so before the expiration date. We don’t do this to harass you. We have found that these precautionary calls have saved many renewals from falling through the cracks of being overlooked.