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Just what is an insurance producer anyhow?

An insurance producer (also called an agent or insurance broker) is an individual licensed by a State's Insurance Division or Department to sell insurance in that State. There are different categories of insurance and a producer must be licensed in each category he or she wishes to transact business. Health Insurance is one category.

An initial course of instruction is required, an insurance licensing exam must be successfully passed, and all licensing fees must be paid before an individual becomes a producer and can conduct insurance business. The license must be renewed on a regular basis and requires completing several hours of continuing education courses on ethics, law, and product knowledge.

An insurance producer must also be appointed by at least one insurance company to transact business on its behalf. He or she may be appointed with several insurance companies or health plans.

An insurance producer is usually an independent businessperson rather than an employee of an insurance company. A producer is usually paid a small commission every time you make an insurance premium payment. It is in the producer's best interest to provide good service and maintain you as his or her client because of this.

The producer's role is twofold. He or she helps the insurance companies and health plans sell their products. He or she also helps educate clients on their health plan choices, assists in submitting and following up on applications, and providing ongoing service.