Choosing the right insurance broker
Like any other professional who you would go to in search of advice – such as doctors, lawyers and accountants – brokers are highly-qualified, objective insurance advisers and go through years of education and on-the-job training to earn those qualifications.
When selecting a broker, look out, particularly, for them to have earned their Qualified Practising Insurance Broker (QPIB), or Certified Insurance Professional (CIP) status. If in doubt, ask. Brokers will be happy to let you know of their qualifications and explain what it takes to attain them.
NIBA member brokers are also duty bound to adhere to the Insurance Brokers Code of Practice. The Code sets out the minimum service standards you can expect when you use an insurance broker and outlines what you need to do in the unlikely event you have a complaint to make.
On top of this, brokers are required to show evidence of continued professional development on an annual basis in order to maintain their qualifications.
All brokers listed on the Need a Broker website fulfil the above criteria, so you can feel confident your insurance needs are in safe hands.
What’s the difference between a broker and an insurance company agent/adviser?
Agents or advisers representing a particular company are only able to provide advice on that company’s insurance products. Because brokers are not allied to any one company, but can instead explore a whole range of products and services available on the market, they are best placed to offer tailored advice in your best interest.
Think of it this way: an insurance broker’s foremost duty is to his or her client. They work for you, not for an insurance company.