ISO to Bolster A-Plus Loss-History Databases to Help Underwriters and Agents Verify Policy Coverage Information

JERSEY CITY, NJ, Oct. 1, 2002 — Insurance Services Office, Inc. (ISO) is bolstering its Automobile-Property Loss Underwriting Service (A-PLUSTM) by developing a new database that will help insurance underwriters, brokers and agents quickly verify coverage and other policy-level information of homeowners and auto policies.

The coverage-verifier database will enable instant checking of both current and previous coverages to identify prospective customers with lapsed or suspended personal property and auto policies. With the coverage-verifier database, insurers will be able to price policies more accurately by applying prior coverage discounts and assigning appropriate pricing tiers for insureds. This information, used in conjunction with loss-history data from A-PLUS, will be valuable for insurers, brokers and agents to evaluate applications from prospective insureds.

The coverage-verifier database will provide independent validation of prior coverage, allowing insurers to avoid binding risks based on erroneous or misrepresented information from prospective customers, while increasing both the submission and retention rates on new business and improving service to prospective customers.

Insurers who provide information to the coverage-verifier database will be able to access a wealth of information to validate proof of prior coverage independently, including:

  • policy in-force status
  • cancellations, lapses and reinstatements
  • information on all insureds listed on the policy
  • coverage period
  • coverages, limits and deductibles
  • driver and vehicle information, such as driver's license numbers and vehicle identification numbers
  • insurance discounts

"Recent studies show that loss ratios can be as much as 25 percent higher when insurance companies assign discounts to policyholders in error or inappropriately price risk factors," said Richard P. Boehning, ISO senior vice president. "The National Association of Insurance Commissioners estimates that nearly 100 million personal-auto and 65 million homeowners policies are in force countrywide ò that's a huge exposure if insurers price these risks inaccurately," he added.

"The coverage-verifier database will offer underwriters, brokers and agents immediate access to an invaluable database to ascertain policy-level coverage information, rate a risk more accurately, make informed pricing decisions, reduce time to process and bind coverage, and virtually eliminate cancellations and expensive resubmissions of applications," Boehning continued.

"Industry interest first prompted ISO to expand the A-PLUS database to include automobile claims-history information that participating insurers provided. Building the coverage-verifier database is the next logical step, and unstinted support from insurers who are willing to provide detailed information can make the new database a reality," Boehning added.

ISO will provide coverage-verifier information through ISO PassportSM, ISO's enterprise-based delivery system that supports Internet access, mainframe-to-mainframe interactive capability and batch processing. ISO Passport leverages advanced search technology to access and retrieve information faster and more efficiently, offering users one-stop shopping for all their underwriting data. In addition, coverage-verifier information will be available to agents, brokers and MGAs of participating insurers through the delivery platforms of ISO's iiX unit.

For more information on the coverage-verifier database, contact Steven Craig at (201) 469-3174, or by e-mail: scraig@iso.com.

ISO is a leading source of information, products and services related to property and liability risk. For a broad spectrum of commercial and personal lines of insurance, ISO provides statistical, actuarial, underwriting and claims information and analyses; consulting and technical services; policy language; information about specific locations; fraud-identification tools; and data processing. In the United States and around the world, ISO serves insurers, reinsurers, agents, brokers, self-insureds, risk managers, insurance regulators and other government agencies.

Release: Immediate

Contacts:
Giuseppe Barone / Erica Helton
MWW Group (for ISO)
201-507-9500
gbarone@mww.com / ehelton@mww.com