Canadian Underwriter
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News (January 01, 1999)


January 1, 1999   by Canadian Underwriter


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To celebrate their acquisition of P.D. Brunt & Company Ltd., adjusters Sobel Adamsons Clements Ltd. recently held a one-day workshop, at Toronto’s The Albany Club, hosted by law enforcement consultant Glenn Foster. A former homicide detective and author of “How Can I Ge Through To You”, Foster is an expert on the art of investigation and interrogation techniques and shared his findings and interviewing strategies with workshop participants.

Zurich Canada has reached the quality standard level of ISO 9001 certification for the company’s Risk Engineering and Technical Risk Management (TRM) departments. Says vice-president Paul Miller, “Certification says to the world that we rank with the best of our peers in all industries. Among insurance companies we are the only one to pursue this certification on a global scale. We’re very proud.” The initiative was started in January 1998. Over the course of the process, Zurich had to prove it meets high standards in a number of specialized areas in order to qualify. Zurich’s Risk Engineering unit provides risk assessment services for both underwriters and policyholders for international and large national industry customers. Technical Risk Management provides similar services for small and mid-sized commercial customers with local, regional, national or NAFTA operations.

The Insurance Communicators Association held a breakfast meeting recently inviting the Insurance Council of Canada’s MaryLou O’Reilly to address members on the relationship between the industry and Canadian consumers. O’Reilly suggested the industry must commit itself to listening to consumers, noting that the Insurance Council of Canada is making efforts to raise awareness about the industry and its responsibility to Canadians. She also shed light on an ICC document, “I Never Read My Policy Until the River Started Rising”, which details research on Canadian knowledge of the industry. According to the figures, 72% of Canadian admit knowing little or not very much about p&c insurance. Also, half of Canadians don’t understand the meaning of insurance claims, deductibles or premiums, 32% of policyholders have never read their car insurance policy, and 40% of consumers don’t understand home insurance. On the positive side, the study found that Canadians have an understanding of basic aspects of insurance but fundamental misconceptions exist about how companies price, how insurance is structured and regulated and how to make an informed decision.