Thursday, February 13, 2014

Consumer question: Don’t my agent and insurance company have to make sure I’m getting their best rates and coverage?

Although you’d think that would be a good way to keep you as a customer, the answer is “no.” The best time to ask about the most cost-effective coverage is at the time of application. It’s always good to ask your agent to offer multiple options for the type of coverage you are looking for.

You can always ask questions about your rates and coverage during the policy period and you are free to change insurers anytime you wish to. Choosing insurance is not like choosing a cell phone plan, where they lock you in for two years.

Generally speaking, you want to be the one asking questions about how to save money or improve coverage on your insurance policies. Most insurers are not going to offer up ways for you to save money once you’ve bought a policy. Think of it this way: You are the custodian of your policies, and it’s up to you to be aware of what they cover and to ask questions when you need clarification and help. You also have the freedom to find other coverage.

Remember, if you feel like your insurance company is not doing its job, you can call our consumer experts at 800-562-6900 or file a complaint online.

It's always a good idea to make sure your insurance agent or broker is licensed to sell insurance in Washington.