Most of our insurance education focuses on improving product knowledge and developing our technical skills. And there’s nothing wrong with that.
However, more emphasis has been placed on discussing the ethical decisions that insurance professionals have to make daily in their dealings with other industry staff, their clients and the insurance companies they represent.
We work in a society where people pay us for the advice and products we provide to them. They expect us to be fair, honest, trustworthy, and loyal and all the other things they value in their insurance professional. If we breach any of these ethical values, they may well perceive us as being unethical in our dealings with them.
When you hear the word “ethics” what, if anything, comes to mind?
If you said that ethics involves doing the right thing – making the right decision – when in a given situation that offers other possibilities, you are on the right track.
So, it makes sense that if you choose to do the right thing, you are acting ethically and, conversely, if you choose to do the wrong thing, chances are pretty good that you are acting unethically.
There are many definitions of “ethics”, including this one: “Ethics is about fairness, about deciding what is right or wrong, about defining practices and rules that guide responsible conduct between individuals and groups”.
Fairness is a basic ethical value – if you treat people fairly, you reduce the odds of your behaving unethically.
Over the years, philosophers and other scholars have made valiant attempts to provide a generally acceptable definition of ethics. Ethics, like professionalism, is very difficult to define in a fundamental way that will win wide acceptance, but we know it when we see it. Several values are widely recognized as the requisite traits of an ethical person, including:
– honesty and integrity;
– respect and caring for others;
– promise keeping, trustworthiness and fairness; and
– personal accountability.
These ethical values can clearly influence the kind of service insurance organizations provide. A motivated work force that is guided by these ethical values will do much to earn the trust of the insurance buying public. Trust is earned over time through dealing honestly and consistently displaying an attitude that reflects both self-respect and respect for others. If service improves, if ethical values rise, the image of insurance will necessarily improve because image reflects reality.
New Course Making the Right Ethical Decisions
Ethics is all about doing the right thing in a particular situation. As insurance professionals, our clients, insurers and the public (and a lot of other people and organizations) would expect us to do nothing less. In this course, we will look at the following topics as they relate to “Ethics and the Insurance Professional”, specifically:
- Defining “Ethics”
- Establishing Ethical Standards – Sources of Influence
- Basic Ethical Values and What They Really Mean
- The Insurance Broker’s Dilemma
- What a Formal Ethics Program Will Do For Your Brokerage.
Credit Hours: 1
Credit Type: Conformité – Compliance
Credit #: CSF18-12-44571
Accrediting Provinces: QUEBEC
This course is included as part of your ILScorp CSF PDU Subscription.
Complete your PDU requirements by November 30, 2019. CSF accredited online courses for Quebec Life Insurance Agents and Financial Planners!
Reference period from December 1, 2017 to November 30, 2019
With the CSF Accredited Online Courses Subscription you will:
- have 6 months access to over 52 accredited CSF insurance training courses in both text and streaming video formats
- access over 120 PDUs in the categories compliance, insurance of persons, general subjects and group insurance of persons
- save money compared to purchasing individual courses
- have a digital record of your completed course work, which we keep on file for up to seven years
- save time by completing your PDU requirements entirely online, no paperwork or commute
On November 1, 2018, new provisions in the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) related to breach of security safeguards came into force, along with breach of security safeguards regulations.
A privacy breach is the loss of, unauthorized access to, or disclosure of, personal information. Breaches can happen when personal information is stolen, lost or mistakenly shared.
Businesses subject to PIPEDA have certain obligations following a breach. These may include reporting to the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, notifying affected individuals and keeping certain records of privacy breaches.
To be compliant, it’s critical that organizations understand just what the requirements are, when the obligations, record-keeping, reporting and notification are triggered, and ensure they implement policies and procedures aligned with the law.
Most data breaches, whether accidental or malevolent, are in fact caused by an organization’s own employees. Implementing a plan to avoid and handle data breaches by its own employees is an important aspect of an its data breach risk mitigation plan generally and the Digital Privacy Act’s new data beach response requirements means more employee breaches are likely.
PIPEDA Explained Legislated Privacy Standards for Every Business Online Course Series
This 3 Part PIPEDA Series is available as part of the ILScorp General CE Subscription.
PIPEDA PART 1:
Lesson A: Understanding Privacy Laws
Introduction, Definitions and General Requirements
Lesson B: The Principles Begin with Accountability
The 10 Principles of the Privacy Code
Principle 1- Accountability
Lesson C: Identifying Purposes and Consent
Principle 2 – Identifying Purposes
Principle 3 – Consent
PIPEDA PART 2
Lesson A: Principles 4, 5 and 6
Principle 4 – Limiting Collection
Principle 5 – Limiting Use, Disclosure and Retention
Principle 6 – Accuracy
Lesson B: Principles 7, 8, 9 and 10
Principle 7 – Safeguards and Reporting Requirements
Principle 8 – Openness
Principle 9 – Individual Access
Principle 10 – Challenging Compliance
PIPEDA PART 3
Lesson A: The Privacy Commissioner and Complaints
Lesson B: Applications and Audits
Continuing Education Requirements for a Life and/or Accident and Sickness Licensee in Saskatchewan.
(1) Licensees are required to earn a minimum of fifteen credit hours of continuing education in each annual reporting period.
(2) Only credit hours earned in a reporting period are eligible unless written consent is provided by Saskatchewan Insurance Council.
(3) Failure to comply with the continuing education requirements shall result in a suspension of licence until the licensee has earned the required continuing education credit hours.
Definition of Continuing Education
(1) Only courses that provide technical education are considered to qualify as continuing education including courses that directly relate to:
(a) Life or accident and sickness insurance products;
(b) Financial planning provided that:
- a minimum of ten of the fifteen hours required per year is related to life or accident and sickness insurance; and
- a maximum of five of the fifteen hours required per year is related to non-insurance sectors such as securities and mutual funds;
(c) Compliance with insurance legislation and requirements such as Council’s Code of Conduct, Act and bylaws made pursuant to that Act, privacy legislation and anti-money laundering and anti-terrorist financing legislation;
(e) Errors and Omissions Insurance; and
Life/A&S Accredited CE Courses
Courses leading to an approved designation such as Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU), Certified Financial Planner (CFP), Registered Financial Planner (RFP), Certified Health Insurance Specialist (CHS), Certified Employee Benefit Specialist (CEBS), Personal Financial Planner (PFP), Certified International Wealth Manager (CIWM), Elder Planning Counselor (EPC) and such other designations as are approved by Council.
(2) To receive credit for the purposes of continuing education, the licensee must successfully complete the course.
(3) Courses, programs or meetings related to sales promotion, promotion, motivation or computer training do not qualify for credit hours.
(1) The education must take place in a structure dedicated to learning which can include,but is not limited to, classroom, seminar, on-line and self-study.
(1) One hour of instruction is equal to one hour of continuing education credit.
(2) A maximum of 8 credit hours will be allowed in one calendar day.
Reporting Requirement for Licensees
(1) Licensees must file an annual report stating the continuing education courses they have attended.
(2) Licensees must retain certificates issued by course provider(s) for inspection by councilin the event of an audit of the licensee’s records by council.
Provincial Licensing Regulations
At ILScorp we are committed to providing you with the best customer experience – and that begins with keeping you informed.
Canada Post postal workers across the country continue to carry out rotating strikes.
These labour disruptions may impact payments sent to ILScorp via mail.
Below is some important information that will help you stay informed of your group member charges and avoid late payment fees:
You can pay your ILS Group Member invoice, and all other invoices via credit card, by calling the ILScorp offices @ 1.800.404.2211 and speaking directly with one of our friendly customer service representatives.
You can also pay your ILS Group Member invoice, and all other invoices via cheque sent through ICS Courier or an alternate courier of your choice.
It’s important to note that you remain responsible for paying your bills on time even during the labour disruption. Thank you for using this information to avoid possible late payment charges.
In turn, ILScorp has been, and will continue to ship all ILS Textbooks through ICS Courier, to ensure our students receive their study material.
The Role of Insurance Agents and Brokers in the Distribution of Insurance Products
Insurance agents are intermediaries between the applicant for insurance and the insurance company. They are not a party to the insurance contract.
An insurance agent represents the insurance company in dealings with a third party.
Example: The XYZ Insurance Company has entered into an Agency Agreement with Justin Case Agencies. All salespeople who work at Justin Case Agencies are considered to be agents for this insurance company when selling its products. As agents of the insurance company, they are given the authority to accept insurance applications from consumers (third parties) who need insurance.
Note: Sometimes agents will be given additional authority to act on behalf of an insurance company. This additional authority could be for doing things such as issuing policies, making policy changes, and/or settling claims under specific amounts.
Most insurance offices will have an Agency Agreement with more than one insurance company. When selling for Insurer A, they are considered to be agents for Insurer A. When selling insurance for Insurer B, they are considered to be agents for Insurer B.
Insurance agents need to be licensed before engaging in the business of insurance.
The name of the insurance office will usually reflect its agency status (e.g.R. Jone’s Insurance Agency, Fleet Agencies).
Representatives of life insurance companies who sell only life insurance are also called agents.
Insurance brokers are intermediaries between the applicant for insurance and the insurance company. They are not a party to the insurance contract.
Insurance brokers represents the client in dealings with insurance companies. They are considered to be independent middlemen not tied to a particular insurance company.
When placing insurance for the client, the broker will seek out an insurance company that has the insurance policy that will best suit the client’s needs.
Example: The insurance brokerage does not need a formal agreement with the insurance companies it uses to provide their clients with insurance. Instead, those companies will determine at the time a quotation or application for insurance is submitted to them if they are interested in providing that insurance. When the broker has received an insurance quote from two or more insurers, they will select the one that best fits their client’s insurance needs.
Like with agents, sometimes brokers will be given additional authority to act on behalf of an insurance company that writes a lot of business with that broker. This additional authority could be for doing things such as issuing policies; making policy changes; settling claims under specific amounts.
Insurance brokers have a primary duty to their clients and are expected at law to exercise reasonable skill, care and diligence.
Insurance brokers also have a primary duty to ensure that they act ethically at all times in any dealings with an insurance company. An integral part of this duty is to:
– ensure that they always tell the truth about the applicant and/or the risk being submitted for insurance, and
– they must not withhold any information that the insurance company would consider important in making the decision whether to provide the applicant with insurance.
An insurance broker can also serve as an agent for an insurance company.
For the most part, the term “insurance broker” has generally replaced the term “insurance agent.” The rationale is that even though an insurance office may be an agent for two or more insurance companies, they really function as insurance brokers by selecting the best policy from those insurers for their client.
Insurance brokers need to be licensed before engaging in the business of insurance.
Point 9: The name of the insurance office will usually reflect its brokerage status
(e.g. R.W. Insurance Brokers, Cunningham’s Insurance Brokerage).
How to become a licensed general insurance agent or broker
In the spirit of Thanksgiving, here is just 1 of the many reasons to be grateful for your career in insurance.
Your Job is to Help People Protect Their Way of Life and Get Back on Their Feet
In insurance, you are not just a cog in the corporate machine: you are making a difference in people’s lives—and there are simply no words for how good that feels.
Excerpt from 10 Reasons to be thankful you work in Insurance
At the end of the day, the insurance industry provides people with opportunity.
The opportunity to learn, grow and help others achieve their dreams. And, being in the business of helping people, is a great business to be in.
Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving!
ILScorp offices will be closed Monday October 8th, 2018 for the Thanksgiving Holiday.
We’ll be back Tuesday morning, ready to take your calls, answer your questions and register you for online insurance programs.
You can also register for our insurance training programs online, anytime, at ILScorp.com
Have a great long weekend, everyone!