What does an Insurance Underwriter do?
Insurance underwriters are the main connection between an insurance company and an insurance agent. Using computer software programs, they evaluate insurance applications and determine whether an applicant should be approved for a policy and for the coverage amount and premiums.
Underwriters analyze risk factors for the candidate such as medical documents and financial situations. Typically, insurance underwriters specialize in either, casualty, life, or health insurance. They work in offices normally on a full time basis.
How to become an Insurance Underwriter
Insurance underwriters usually need a bachelor's degree with courses in economics, business, mathematics, and finance. However, candidates that have strong computer skills and a background in insurance-related work may be considered for employment.
Once an applicant is hired, they usually train under an experienced underwriter. Most employers expect an underwriter to take coursework to become certified because of the importance of remaining current in new technology, changes in state and federal regulations, and new insurance policies.
Institutes offer the Charter Property and Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) designation for those with 3 years experience and offer a training program for beginner underwriters.
Job Description of an Insurance Underwriter
The duties of an insurance underwriter is to determine whether to provide insurance to a candidate and under what terms to include, coverage amounts and premiums. They must take the information of the candidate and enter it into their computer software program. They evaluate the recommendations provided by the program and make a decision on whether to approve or reject an applicant.
He or she must determine the client risk, such as, credit scores and medical documents. They investigate an applicant further and if necessary contact medical or field representatives for more information that would be relevant to the client.
Insurance underwriters may have more specific duties depending on their specialty such as life, health, property and casualty, or a further specialization. An insurance underwriter should be skilled in mathematics, analytical, and decision making. They should also be detail oriented and have interpersonal skills.