We all need a job or career that uses our talents and abilities and leaves us satisfied because we’re making a contribution to society. Such opportunities are found in the general insurance industry. The industry is made up of insurance companies, agencies and brokerages, adjusting firms, risk managers, government agencies and industry related associations to which many insurance professionals belong. The general insurance industry in Canada employs 115,000 people. The jobs and careers in the industry are varied and diverse. Independent adjusters make a difference in peoples’ lives. An independent adjuster is a qualified, independent business person who investigates, quantifies, negotiates and resolves the amount of loss in an insurance claim. The adjuster completes these tasks on behalf of insurance companies and government insurers who require the expertise of a licensed, experienced adjuster for personal contact with their insured.
To get a job in this field, an individual must have a sound educational background indicating a desire and ability to learn. On the job training and special courses help individuals progress their skills and abilities on the path to becoming licensed.
Since individuals working in this area mostly deal with the general public, they must possess or acquire an understanding personality. A basic knowledge of automobiles, residential and commercial construction and elements of law are needed. One must have the ability to organize and maintain records of activities. In time, this ability spills over into the organization of investigations. Oral and written communications skills are also important.
A Typical Day
A bonus of the profession is the variety in the daily routine which ranges from the examination and photographing of an accident scene and vehicles and securing witness statements on an auto loss to the investigation of a fire scene and the review of findings of police and fire officials. Discussions with insureds regarding the amount of their loss, the contractors and garages regarding damages, the detailed review of documents, prepares one for report writing in which the findings are communicated to the insurance company.
All independent adjusters must be licensed to operate. Licensing requirements vary by province, (check the Career and Education section on our website), however normally it is necessary to complete eight specified courses through The Insurance Institute of Canada, and in some areas to pass an oral exam.
Licensing qualifications are obtained while the candidate is employed by an independent adjusting firm. You may begin and even complete the required courses prior to being hired by an independent adjusting firm, however, there will still be a training period. Courses are taught at the Insurance Institutes, Community Colleges and can be taken by correspondence. For further information on the courses contact your local Insurance Institute.
Professional recognition comes to those who are diligent in their study and acquire experience and qualifications and, the remuneration is directly related to those efforts. Personal satisfaction is achieved when dealing with the general public involving resolution of complicated and sometimes tragic situations.