Member Spotlight: Alleviating Clients’ Burdens With the Claims Advocacy Team
| By ToniAnn Longinetti, JC Contreras, Patti Scheppy and Miriam Kasseris | Nov 14 2023
At Gallagher, our private client advocacy team has over 50 years of combined experience in the claims industry, with a diverse range of expertise in both commercial and high net worth (HNW) spaces. Our team members have worked as adjusters for carrier partners, provided extensive broker support for HNW clientele and specialized in areas such as entertainment and aviation claims.
The Role of the Claims Advocacy Team
The claim advocacy role involves providing support to clients with low to mid-high complexity losses throughout the claim process. We frequently act as a liaison between clients and carriers and strive to generate the best possible claims outcomes by analyzing and presenting findings to the carrier. Additionally, the role includes working with carriers to revisit coverage positions following denials or inaccurate loss valuations to ensure fair resolutions for our clients.
A claims advocate’s day-to-day activities involve reviewing and prioritizing pending claims, heavy communication with a strong emphasis on customer service, analyzing and evaluating claims positions, preparing and presenting claim documentation, collaborating with internal teams and engaging in continuous learning. We also act as an expert and educator for internal teams on a variety of different claim topics.
Our role has certainly evolved to adapt to emerging technologies. At Gallagher, our National Risk Control (NRC) team has embraced new tools and platforms that enhance our ability to serve our clients more efficiently and effectively. We leverage these technologies to streamline processes, improve communication and provide great service for our clients. By staying up to date, we are able to stay ahead of the curve in this constantly evolving landscape.
Training Needed for a Claims Advocate
A claims advocate should ideally have a strong background in insurance claims handling and a deep understanding of insurance policies and coverage. They should be knowledgeable about the claim process and have experience in negotiating and resolving complex claims. Additionally, training in communication, customer service skills and emotional intelligence is important to effectively support clients and bridge communication gaps with insurance carriers.
Continuous professional development and staying updated on industry trends and regulations is also crucial for a claims advocate to provide the best possible assistance. Our team has combined industry designations such as CAPI, AIC, CPRIA and ARM designations, but there is no one size fits all approach, and often the best training is hands-on experience.
Service: The Ultimate Goal
A big focus, especially for our private client team, is to provide exceptional and personalized service to our clients. We understand that time is a precious asset, and we take on the role of facilitators and negotiators for our busy clients. By effectively giving back time to them, we alleviate a significant burden and become their trusted quarterback, handling many aspects of the claims process on their behalf. This allows them to focus on their work or other interests, knowing that we are taking care of their claim.
Nobody wants to deal with a claim, and we often work with clients who are facing difficult situations or inconvenient problems. Our goal is to help alleviate that burden, giving them the freedom to pursue their other interests and priorities.
The most rewarding aspect of this role is the ability to achieve a "win" and create success stories. When we can secure a higher settlement or overturn an unfair claims decision, it brings a tremendous sense of purpose and accomplishment. If you enjoy helping people, conducting research and acting as a resolution expert to fight for the best interests of our clients, this can be a fantastic career choice for anyone entering the industry.
Tags: Commentary , Claims