A special report from Dave Hausch, NAIIA President...
I am writing this from the Canadian Independent Adjusters Association meeting in Toronto, Canada. It was their first annual Claims Innovation Conference & Exhibition for insurance industry claim leaders. I can report that they have taken our lead in bringing in an advisory council.
The morning session started with industry experts and insurance carriers Q&A panel about where they see the industry trending which was very similar to our NAC - Q&A that we do at our meetings. They have a lot of licensing issues for their adjusters between the different provinces. Similar to the challenges that we have between licensing states in the United States.
The main impression I came away with from the session was that they see the need for independent adjusters increasing, not decreasing, over time. All of the carriers stated they were using Guidewire. They are looking to Guidewire to allow their vendors to integrate with their systems. They believe the next big step between the independent services and the carrier staff will be inputting the data one time. They are hoping that Guidewire will create a secure bridge between them and their vendors, to assist in claims processing, and decrease duplication.
The other issue that came up repeatedly was resources in times of catastrophic losses, basically not having enough people. Their vendor partners are understaffed for major events and raised questions regarding how to properly staff and be prepared. Their first desire is to use all Canadian resources, and when necessary, bring up support staff from the United States.
Their second session put the four heads of the four largest independent adjusting firms in Canada, on the panel, to review the same questions answered by the insurance carrier staff. The independent adjusting firms reviewed CAT preparation and adjuster licensing issues. The focus of what the Canadian Independent Adjuster’s Association should be looking at, to help provide a solution.
The Canadian IA firms stated they are not looking for U.S. adjusters to be the first wave, but do need our staff when they have large events. In Canada 65% of all claims are handled “cradle to grave,” and their challenge using U.S. CAT adjusters, is that are not prepared to handle full adjustment claims in a CAT situation.
The afternoon schedule included educational sessions. The first was about Bill C45. The law that will legalize the use of marijuana across all of Canada. It goes into effect on October 17, 2018. Each Province will regulate the law. Many of the conversation and concerns that we have had regarding Colorado and Washington were similar to what they were discussing. Those challenges will now be a nationwide concern for Canada.
The next speaker was Sam Kodsi, for The Future of The Black Box Technology. It was an excellent presentation. He volunteered to do a presentation in the United States if anyone is interested. The company is called Kodsi Forensic Engineering with a website of www.kodsiengineering.com. Their relations manager is Mr. Sami Shaker. That is who you would contact if you would like to have him do a presentation for anyone in the U.S. They do presently work in New York and Michigan. It was a very good presentation and something that benefit our member firms.
Additionally, they had a speaker from Mitchell Investigations. It was very similar to Michelle Stuart with JAG Investigations. The last presentation was by Paul Kovacs, from the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction. They believe that the storm damage in the future will not be an increase of two- or three-fold. They are estimating a ten-fold growth due to climate change.
That topic was a bookended to the conversation from the start of the day, focused on how to have enough resources to handle the spike in volume from major weather events. Mr. Kovac stated that the need is closer than we think, possibly within the next decade and definitely within the next generation.
At night, there was a dinner with the exhibitors. Similar to our dinner on the exhibit floor where the food and drinks are intermingled between the exhibit booths to get everyone to visit.
My take away from the CIAA is they have many of the challenges we do in the states. They refer to the states all the time and look to us as a resource. Anyone that has a connection to a Canadian IA firm or carrier, I would encourage you to reach out and see how you may be a resource to them in their times of need.
Dave Hausch, President
August 28, 2018